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Hargreaves Lansdown investment platform review

We analyse the charges levied by Hargreaves Lansdown and ask whether the investment platform provides good value for investors

In this article
What is Hargreaves Lansdown? Is Hargreaves Lansdown good or bad? What do customers say about Hargreaves Lansdown? What are Hargreaves Lansdown's charges? Who is Hargreaves Lansdown good for?
Who is Hargreaves Lansdown expensive for? What accounts and services does Hargreaves Lansdown offer? Is your money safe with Hargreaves Lansdown? Get top money-saving tips from Which?

What is Hargreaves Lansdown?

Founded in 1981, Hargreaves Lansdown has grown to become a FTSE 100 company, making it one of the largest listed firms in the UK.

Is Hargreaves Lansdown good or bad?

To get an idea of how good or bad Hargreaves Lansdown is, we asked its customers.

Which?'s rating for customer satisfaction is based on feedback from real customers. We ask investors to rate their current platform for the quality of its online tools, customer service, and investment opportunities. We also ask if it meets their needs, is value for money and whether they'd recommend it to someone else.

However, to be named a Which? Recommended Provider (WRP), customer satisfaction alone won't suffice; we also consider platform fees.

Which? members can exclusively read the results of our unique customer satisfaction survey.

Members can log in to read our analysis. If you're not already a member, join Which? and get full access to these results and all our reviews.

Aspect of service Star rating
Online tools Logged out padlock
Customer Service Logged out padlock
Investment information Logged out padlock
Available investments meet my needs Logged out padlock
Value for money Logged out padlock

What do customers say about Hargreaves Lansdown?

We’ve spoken to real-life investors who use Hargreaves Lansdown and this is what some of them had to say:

  • 'On the rare occasions I have telephoned Hargreaves Lansdown, the person taking the call has been professional and obviously well trained as my query has been answered immediately.'
  • 'Disappointed that they continued to recommend investments in Woodford right up to its collapse. That is the only issue having invested with them for 10 years.'
  • 'HL are very professional but they are not perfect.'

Check out our guide on the best and worst investment platforms to see how Hargreaves Lansdown compared.

What are Hargreaves Lansdown's charges?

Annual charges

  • Annual fund charge of 0.45% on funds up to £250,000;
  • 0.25% on the portion of funds between £250,000 and £1m
  • 0.1% on anything between £1m and £2m
  • 0% for anything above that.

Trading charges

  • £5.95 - £11.95 to trade shares and investment trusts online, depending on the frequency of trades
  • Free trading for unit trusts and open-ended investment company funds

We’ve estimated the cost of investing various sums in Hargreaves Lansdown over the course of a year in the table below. The costs assume you only buy funds (shares work out slightly cheaper with some companies), and make four purchases and four sales each year.

Amount invested Annual cost
£5,000 Logged out detail
£10,000 Logged out detail
£25,000 Logged out detail
£50,000 Logged out detail
£100,000 Logged out detail
£250,000 Logged out detail
£500,000 Logged out detail
£1m Logged out detail

Source: Analysis by Which? Money correct as of April 2020

Read our comparison of investment platform charges to see how much investing with Hargreaves Lansdown costs for a range of portfolios.

If you're thinking of using Hargreaves Lansdown to take an income from your pension in a drawdown plan, read our comparison of pension drawdown charges

Who is Hargreaves Lansdown good for?

If you're happy to pay for a premium service, Hargreaves Lansdown offers solid core services with bells and whistles that are appreciated by its clients.

For those with smaller portfolios, Hargreaves Lansdown could cost you more than its cheaper rivals, but this might be a relatively small premium if you really value the service.

Who is Hargreaves Lansdown expensive for?

Investors with smaller portfolios could pay lower fees with Which? Recommended Providers AJ Bell and Vanguard.

If you have a larger portfolio, Hargreaves Lansdown could prove costly. Its fees are calculated as a percentage of your portfolio value, so you could end up paying thousands of pounds a year more than broker charging a fixed fee, such as Interactive Investor, Halifax Share Dealing or The Share Centre.

However, it's fairly competitive when it comes to share trading. 

    What accounts and services does Hargreaves Lansdown offer?

    The information below gives an at-glance view of the key things that the accounts and services Hargreaves Lansdown offers. 

    Elements marked with a  are offered by Hargreaves Lansdown those marked with a  are not. 

     

     Advisory services

     

    Advisory services allow you to access professional investment advice.

     

     Annuities

     

    An annuity is an insurance product which allows you to swap your pension savings for a guaranteed regular income that will last for the rest of your life.

     General investment account

     

    A general investment account that can hold different types of investments but doesn’t give tax-free benefits like pensions and Isas.

     

     Income drawdown 

     

    Income drawdown allows you to take money out of your pension to live on in retirement.

     

     Junior Isa

     

    A junior Isa is a tax-free savings account for under 18s.

     

    ✓ Lifetime Isa

     

    A lifetime Isa is a tax-free savings or investment account designed to help people aged 18-39 buy their first home or save for retirement.

     

     Savings accounts

     

    A savings account is somewhere you can put your money so it can grow in value.

     

     Sipps

     

    A Sipp is a pension where you have complete control over the investments you put your savings into.

     

     Stocks and shares Isa

     

    A stocks and shares Isa is a tax-free account that allows you to put your money in a range of investments.

     

    ✘ Banking services

     

    Banking services allow you to operate bank accounts, make transfers and make payments.

    Is your money safe with Hargreaves Lansdown?

    If Hargreaves Lansdown went out of business, you would be compensated by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

    The FSCS will cover up to £85,000 of investments per person, per platform. You can claim for free online: there’s no reason to use a claims management company.

    You won’t be compensated for investments falling in value, or a company in which you hold shares goes bust, unless this poor performance resulted from bad advice given by a regulated Independent Financial Advisor that has since gone bust. 

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