Hargreaves Lansdown Review UK: How They Work, Trading Fees, Pros and Cons

If you’ve considered using an investment platform or stockbroker in the UK, you’ve probably heard of Hargreaves Lansdown. An established broker, it’s a member of the FTSE 100 index and manages around £120 billion in assets.

Hargreaves Lansdown Review

However, choosing the best investment platform depends on your experience, investment volumes, and tax considerations. We’re here to guide you.

This review provides an unbiased look at the Hargreaves Lansdown platform, covering its key features, commissions and fees, available products, customer reviews, and our expert opinion.

What is Hargreaves Lansdown, and How do they Work?

Hargreaves Lansdown is a major UK financial company founded on July 1st, 1981. It’s listed on the London Stock Exchange as part of the FTSE 100 index and manages over £120 billion in investments. It is trusted by 1.7 million clients.

Based in Bristol, the company provides brokerage services across the UK. They offer funds, shares, and similar products to retail investors in the UK, Canada, and Europe, allowing them to manage different investments in one place.

How They Work

  • Account Services: Hargreaves Lansdown provides an account to manage your investments, providing access to various investment options, trading tools, market updates, and calculators.
  • Trading App: Their user-friendly trading app, compatible with iOS and Android, allows you to monitor your portfolio and make transactions on the go.
  • Website: The website is easy to navigate, offering investment guides and market insights.

Costs and Fees
While Hargreaves Lansdown is a trusted member of the UK’s financial services industry, it charges relatively high commissions and fees, which may discourage investors with smaller portfolios.

Investment Options
Hargreaves Lansdown provides access to over 3,000 funds, bonds, ETFs, and shares across UK, Canadian, and European markets. Despite higher fees, it remains a trusted and safe broker, offering a comprehensive range of financial products.

Main Features of Hargreaves Lansdown Platform

Here’s a summary of the key features offered by Hargreaves Lansdown:

Main FeaturesDescription
RegulationRegulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Academy (FCA)
Markets and Available ProductsFunds, Shares, Investment trusts, Exchange-traded Funds (ETFs) and Gilts and bonds
Financial Compensation Claims in case of bankruptcyUp to £85,000
Account types/ ProductsStocks and shares, ISA Share dealing account, Lifetime ISA (LISA) Self-invested personal pension (SIPP) Junior SIPP Junior ISA (JISA) Active Savings
Minimum DepositThe minimum deposit for the HL Fund and Share Account is £1 Minimum sum investment into the Fund is £100
Deposit methodDebit card and Bank transfer
Deposit and Withdrawal FeesNone
Trading PlatformProprietary in-app and web-based trading platform
Base Currency£
Foreign Currency ExchangeFirst £5,000 – 1% FX fee; Over £5,000 – 0.75% FX fee; Over £10,000 – 0.50% FX fee; Over £20,000 – 0.25% FX fee

Regulation and Investors’ Protection: Hargreaves Lansdown

When selecting a broker, prioritizing regulation and security is crucial to protecting your investments. A well-regulated broker operates under stringent guidelines set by financial authorities, providing safety for your funds. Security measures like encryption, two-factor authentication, and segregated client accounts are vital to protect your assets from fraud, platform failures, or misuse

Hargreaves Lansdown Regulation UK

Hargreaves Lansdown operates under one of the UK’s strictest regulatory frameworks. It is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the main body responsible for ensuring financial stability and transparency in the UK. This oversight imposes rigorous standards on the company, making it a secure and trustworthy option for UK investors.

Hargreaves Lansdown’s Protection Scheme | Is My Money Safe?

Beyond being regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), Hargreaves Lansdown ensures clients’ funds are held in segregated accounts. This separation means that, if the company were to fail, client funds are returned directly rather than considered part of the company’s recoverable assets. Furthermore, investments are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), which offers up to £85,000 in compensation if bankruptcy occurs, securing your money.

In addition, Hargreaves Lansdown maintains a treasury committee responsible for managing clients’ funds within FCA guidelines. They carefully select, appoint, and monitor the third-party institutions that hold clients’ assets. Stocks are held in nominee accounts with Hargreaves Lansdown Nominees Limited, a non-trading company, preventing it from incurring liabilities while ensuring the parent company is fully liable for any nominee default.

These comprehensive regulations, authorities, and committees make Hargreaves Lansdown a safe haven for your investments, whether in a pension, stock, or savings account.

Hargreaves Lansdown: Product offerings

Hargreaves Lansdown insight

Hargreaves Lansdown Limited, a broker platform and financial institution, offers various forms of individual savings and pension accounts with access to various investment options.

Here is a detailed list of products that Hargreaves Lansdown gives you access to:

Individual Savings and Pension Accounts
Hargreaves Lansdown provides various accounts, including Stocks & Shares ISAs, Junior ISAs, SIPPs, and Fund & Share Accounts. Here’s a quick overview of the different investments available:

Funds
These pooled investments are managed by professionals and spread across shares and bonds Hargreaves Lansdown offers access to over 3,000 funds, with market-beating discounts and free insights from their research team. There are no commission fees for buying or selling.

Shares
Buy shares to gain a stake in a company and earn dividends. Hargreaves Lansdown offers a low-cost way to buy shares in the UK, US, Canada, and Europe, with free info and alerts. Limit orders and stop-loss tools are included at no extra cost.

Exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
ETFs are like funds, but they trade on stock exchanges like shares. Choose from over 1,300 ETFs and related products with free trading tools and no annual management fee. The cost per trade is tiered based on the number of deals made in the previous month:

  • 0-9 trades: £11.95 per deal
  • 10-19 trades: £8.95 per deal
  • 20+ trades: £5.95 per deal

Investment Trusts
These companies trade on the stock exchange, pooling investments across shares, property, and other assets. Hargreaves Lansdown offers over 400 Investment Trusts and Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), with free trading tools.

Gilts and Corporate Bonds
Invest in government (gilts) or corporate bonds to earn interest. Hargreaves Lansdown provides access to over 700 bonds with no annual fees.

Cash
You can open your account with a cash deposit and decide on investments later. Your deposit is safe and can grow with interest.

Hargreaves Lansdown provides a wide array of investments to build your portfolio efficiently and securely.

Hargreaves Lansdown: Account Types and Fees

Hargreaves Lansdown Account Types
Hargreaves Lansdown Account Types

Hargreaves Lansdown offers a variety of investment and savings accounts tailored to different needs and stages in life, each with specific features and conditions:

Hargreaves Lansdown Stocks and Shares ISA Account

This is a tax-efficient way to invest in a wide range of assets, such as stocks, funds, and bonds. It is designed to help individuals grow their wealth while benefiting from tax-free gains and income.

  • Contribution Limit: £20,000 per year.
  • Tax Benefits: Tax-free growth and withdrawals.
  • Fees:
    • Funds up to £250,000: 0.45%.
    • Shares: 0.45%, capped at £45 annually.

👉 Find out the best Stocks and Shares ISA platforms!

Hargreaves Lansdown Lifetime ISA (LISA):

  • Age Requirement: Available to individuals aged 18 to 39.
  • Contribution Limit: £4,000 per year, part of the overall £20,000 ISA limit.
  • Government Bonus: 25% on contributions, valid for first home purchases or retirement savings.
  • Fees: Similar to Stocks and Shares ISA.

Hargreaves Lansdown Fund and Share Account

  • Contribution Limits: Unlimited.
  • Flexibility: Allows trading of shares, funds, and other securities.
  • Tax: Use tax-free dividends, capital gains, and personal savings allowances.

Hargreaves Lansdown Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP)

  • Tax Relief: Up to 45% (47% for Scottish taxpayers).
  • Withdrawals: 25% can be withdrawn tax-free; the rest is taxed as income.
  • Fees:
    • Funds up to £250,000: 0.45%.
    • Shares: 0.45%, capped at £200 annually.

Hargreaves Lansdown Junior Accounts (Junior ISA and Junior SIPP)

A tax-efficient savings and investment account for children under 18. Parents and guardians can save up to £9,000 annually to support the child’s future financial needs.

  • Contribution Limit for Junior ISA: £9,000 per year.
  • Junior SIPP: Operates similarly to adult SIPPs but is managed by guardians until the child turns 18.
  • Fees: For Junior SIPP, similar to adult SIPP rates, Junior ISA has no account charges, ensuring all contributions go directly toward the child’s future.

Hargreaves Lansdown Other Services Offered

  • Hargreaves Lansdown Cash ISA – A cash ISA is a type of savings account that allows you to earn interest-free of UK income tax. You can put up to £20,000 into your cash ISA in a tax year. This is the maximum amount you can put in all your ISAs within the 2023/2024 tax year.
  • Ready-made Portfolios – Hargreaves Lansdown’s ready-made portfolio is an easy way to start investing if you’re looking to invest but unsure where to start. The portfolio is an all-in-one type. Overall, the financial institution provides a portfolio of funds, and you are responsible for the amount you want to invest in each fund.
  • Hargreaves Lansdown Wealth Shortlist – The wealth shortlist selects funds in various sectors. Hargreaves Lansdown believes that they have the best potential within their sectors. This helps potential investors build a well-balanced and diversified portfolio.
  • Foreign Currency Exchange—With the Hargreaves Lansdown foreign currency exchange, you can transfer more than 40 different currencies, which will be converted to their base currency. This service is available online or over the phone with a representative.
  • Spread Betting and CFDs—Hargreaves Lansdown allows you to trade CFDs and spread bets through its partner, IG Group.
  • Annuity – Annuity is a retirement product and one of the methods to withdraw from your pension pot. The program allows you to swap some or all of your pension for a regular income that guarantees you payment for life.
  • Drawdown—This is a retirement payment option in which you take a variable income from the pension pot while keeping some invested. You can take up to 25% of the pension pot at once as a tax-free lump sum.
  • Fund Finder—This feature on the Hargreaves Lansdown platform allows you to search for a particular fund by sector, fund type, unit type, provider, and more.
  • Hargreaves Lansdown Transfer—This financial institution allows you to transfer investments to or away from their platform at no charge. You can transfer existing Pensions, ISAs, and Investments to any broker free of charge or to Hargreaves Lansdown with zero fees. You can perform this transfer online or by sending the transfer form by post.

Hargreaves Lansdown: Other Trading Fees

DescriptionCharge
UK Stamp Duty0.5% on purchase of UK shares (rounded up to the nearest £5 for residual shares)
Panel on Takeover and Mergers£1 on UK shares deals over £10,000
Irish Stamp Duty1% on purchases of Irish shares
French Financial Transaction Tax0.3% on some French shares
Italian Financial Transaction Tax0.1% of the trade value, a minimum charge of £20
Telephone share dealing1% of the trade value, minimum charge of £20, and Maximum charge of £50
Direct Debit investment for FTSE 250 shares and selected investment trusts and ETFs£1.50 per stock per month
Automated sales to cover charges (selling fund units or shares to cover fees)£1.50 per deal for shares. No charge for fund
Quarterly statement and valuation (paperless)No charge
Quarterly statement and valuation (paper)£20 + VAT per year

Hargreaves Lansdown: Deposit and Withdrawal Options

Hargreaves provides easy, free, and straightforward deposit and withdrawal methods.

Deposit Methods

  • Debit Card: If you can access your Hargreaves Lansdown account online, you can add money using your debit card by selecting the ‘add money’ tab. This method is instant.
  • Telephone: You can contact the help contact Hargreaves Lansdown on 0117 988 9965 with your debit card details.
  • By Post: You can send a cover letter quoting your client’s number, and the cheque will be payable to ‘HLAM Client A/C.’

Withdrawal Methods

  • Bank transfer – Provided your bank accepts Faster Payment, you can withdraw from the Hargreaves Lansdown app or website. The maximum amount you can request online per day is £9,999.
  • Telephone: Hargreaves Lansdown must have cleared your Nominated Bank Account on record and set up your security details to use this method. You can contact them on 0117 980 9950 to request the withdrawal.

Hargreaves Lansdown: Client Support

Hargreaves Lansdown offers highly-regarded and exclusive customer support via:

  • Phone: 8 a.m. till 5 p.m. on business days and 9:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m. Saturday.
  • Via message on their website

You can also book an in-person meeting with Hargreaves Lansdown’s financial advisor at their London office, by telephone, or through one of their Bristol representatives.

Hargreaves Lansdown Trading Platform

Hargreaves Lansdown Trading platform
Screenshot of HL Platform

Hargreaves Lansdown has a well-designed and easy-to-navigate trading mobile app and website. The mobile app is compatible with Android and iOS devices. The app is secured with touch and face ID to prevent security breaches.

With the trading platforms, you can access your Hargreaves Lansdown online account and buy, sell, and manage transactions.

On the other hand, the platform is a little bit outdated compared to other available options and brokers, which makes it more user-friendly. Still, it functions.

Hargreaves Lansdown: User Reviews and Opinions

As an old financial institution still holding to its traditional styles of investment strategy, Hargreaves Lansdown has a 4.2 out of 5-star rating on Trustpilot. And about 59% five-star ratings from 8,000+ reviewers.

Hargreaves Lansdown user reviews Trustpilot

The majority of the reviews describe the platform’s versatility and excellent customer service. However, it loses star ratings because it is expensive to manage for both small and large portfolios.

Also, the Hargreaves Lansdown app has 500,000+ downloads on the Google Play Store and over 12,000 reviews and ratings, showing 4.6 out of 5-star ratings.

Our Opinion about Hargreaves Lansdown

Hargreaves Lansdown is a safe investment platform associated with the top-tiered financial security FCA. It’s everything you could ask for in a financial institution. It offers a good range of account types and investments and an excellent customer support team.

However, it could be more competitive regarding commission fees and dealing charges. It’s an expensive platform to manage portfolios and transactions.

Therefore, if you’re looking for a trusted and reliable platform with a track record of excellence in investment, Hargreaves Lansdown ticks all the boxes. But check out other broker options if you need a low to free commission and no-frills in town.

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FAQs about Hargreaves Lansdown

Is Hargreaves Lansdown too expensive?

Some Hargreaves Lansdown fees and commissions are higher than those of their competitors, while others are lower. Also, the commission fees depend on the plan you want to invest in.

Can I still make a subscription to my ISA if I move to another country?

If you still reside within the European Economic Area (EEA) and can prove your eligibility for an ISA, you can invest money in or apply for an HL stock and shares ISA. If you move outside this area, Hargreaves Lansdown will no longer accept your subscription. This might have changed since Brexit.

Is Hargreaves Lansdown Trustworthy?

Yes! It’s one of the UK’s most reputable and oldest financial institutions, with a track record of excellence and commitment to serving its customers. It’s also an FCA-registered financial platform and listed FTSE 100 company. Everything is very transparent. 

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