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Written by: Edith B. Updated: Dec 2022
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Things to consider

There are many aspects to assessing a broker’s services in general, maybe even too many to list. Below, we’ll focus on the most important criteria that should be taken into account when determining whether a broker is good for beginners.

A beginner-friendly broker should have:

  • an excellent web and mobile trading platform
  • low fees
  • great educational tools
  • good customer service
  • an easy account opening process
  • low minimum deposit

Legitimacy is also very important, but since we recommend only legit brokers regulated by top-tier financial authorities, this is one thing you don’t have to worry about.

More and more people are looking to become a player on financial markets either as traders or investors. However, when researching the basics, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of information available online.

This is where BrokerChooser offers a helping hand. The reason is simple: choosing the right service, especially when you are taking your first steps in trading, is highly important.

In this article we’ll check whether Vanguard is the right choice for a starting trader.

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Stock Fee Calculator

Confused about fees? Use this tool to see what the commission fee of a specific stock trade would be at Vanguard. To check and compare fees at other brokers, go to our main Fee calculator page.

Before doing so, check out our Privacy Policy and our General Terms and Conditions.

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The current version of the calculator only handles whole share transactions, it does not calculate with fractional share trades.

Is Vanguard good for beginners
Is Vanguard good for beginners?

Based on our scoring methodology, Vanguard is a broker that we can recommend for beginners.

Let's take a look at its services one by one, following the criteria we set above, to get the whole picture.

  • 💻 Vanguard's web platform has some good things to offer: Clear fee report. Two-step (safer) login. Price alerts. However, some things may not be suitable for beginners. Areas of improvement: Limited customizability (for charts, workspace). Some features are hard to find.
  • 📱 The mobile platform of Vanguard is reasonably well-designed: User-friendly. Two-step (safer) login. Good search function. This may be helpful for the first steps in your trading journey.
  • 🕖 Account opening: Fully digital. No minimum deposit. Low minimum deposit. When it comes to the actual process however, there are more seamless experiences at other brokers that Vanguard could look to as an example. Areas of improvement: Slow account opening time.
  • 📚 Educational videos. Good educational tools. However, Vanguard's education materials could be improved.Areas of improvement: No demo account. No trading platform tutorial videos.
  • 📞 When you need help, one thing you should have immediate access to is customer service. Vanguard's customer service generally scored well on these points: Phone support. Fast response time. Relevant answers.
  • 💰 Low minimum deposits and low-cost transactions are attractive for new traders. Vanguard's deposit and withdrawal processes have some good things to offer: No deposit fee. User-friendly. Free withdrawal (via ACH). Nevertheless, its services could be improved in other areas: Credit/Debit card not available. $10 fee for wire transfer withdrawals.

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Is Vanguard good for beginners
Overview of Vanguard's services

Let’s take an overall look at how Vanguard compares to its peers when it comes to platforms, fees, account opening and education tools. Our scores are on a scale of 1.0 to 5.0, from worst to best.

Vanguard services vs. similar brokers
Vanguard J.P. Morgan Self-Directed Investing Ally Invest
Web platform score 3.4 stars 2.9 stars 3.5 stars
Mobile platform score 4.4 stars 3.9 stars 3.3 stars
Fees Low Low Low
Account opening score 4.2 stars 5.0 stars 4.2 stars
Education score 3.5 stars 2.5 stars 3.5 stars
Customer service score 4.5 stars 2.3 stars 3.9 stars
Deposit and withdrawal score 2.4 stars 2.2 stars 2.1 stars

If you wish to read more about Vanguard, click 'Visit Broker' to go to the broker's website. We also have a detailed review of the broker that you can read by clicking on the 'More' button.

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Is Vanguard good for beginners
Is Vanguard legit?

We hear more and more stories each day about clients who lost their money to scammers from Telegram or through unregulated services. BrokerChooser only features brokers that have top-tier financial regulators. As such, Vanguard is a legit and trusted broker.

If you’d like to know more, check out our deeper dive into Vanguard's legitimacy.

Is Vanguard good for beginners
Where can I find more information?

If Vanguard is not the right broker for you, go ahead and check out our picks for Best Brokers for Beginners in 2023 for some alternatives.

Also, if you feel that some things weren’t clear when it comes to the brokerage world, no worries. We have lots of content to cover your questions. You can find our articles in the Education section of our site.

For example, if you want to know how to buy shares online and how the whole process works, there’s an article about that. If you’d like to learn more about investing in stocks or what short selling is, we have articles about these topics too.

We have also written a few materials that focus on recent events in the news, like what a short squeeze is.

We hope you found all of the information above useful. If you have any questions, we’d love to hear from you, just write to us at [email protected]. See you there!

Author of this article

Edith Balázs

Author of this article

Edith is an experienced financial journalist having worked for 20+ years as a correspondent for Bloomberg, Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal covering macroeconomics, stock, currency and fixed-income markets. She holds a Master's degree in American Studies and Journalism.

Edith Balázs

Senior Editor

Edith is an experienced financial journalist having worked for 20+ years as a correspondent for Bloomberg, Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal covering macroeconomics, stock, currency and fixed-income markets. She holds a Master's degree in American Studies and Journalism.

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology