Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox: which should you choose to invest with?

4 min Read Published: 23 Jun 2022

Hargreaves Lansdown vs MoneyboxIf you are looking for the best place to invest your money, you may be comparing Hargreaves Lansdown* and Moneybox. In this review we look at the key features of both platforms, so you can decide which is best-suited to you.

What are the benefits of investing with Hargreaves Lansdown, one of the largest investment platforms in the UK, compared with investment app Moneybox?

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - which is better?

Hargreaves Lansdown Moneybox
Minimum investment £1 (Fund and share account)

£100 to open an ISA or SIPP (or £25 per month if investing regularly)

£1,000 (HL Portfolio+)

Fees (platform charges) On the value of your portfolio between £0-£250,000 there is a 0.45% annual charge.

Between £250,000-£1m - 0.25% per annum charge

Between £1m-£2m - 0.10% per annum charge

Over £2m - 0% per annum charge

£1 monthly subscription (waived for first 3 months)

0.45% annual platform fee

(No monthly subscription for SIPP, 0.45% platform fee up to £100,000, 0.15% over £100,000)

Products available Active Savings

Cash ISA

Fund and share account

ISA, GIA (General Investment Account), Lifetime ISA, Junior ISA, SIPP, Junior SIPP

Simple saver and notice accounts

Cash Lifetime ISA

ISA, Lifetime ISA, Junior ISA, General Investment Account and SIPP

Number of portfolios 6 (HL Portfolio+) 3
Ethical portfolios n/a 3
Read our full review Hargreaves Lansdown Moneybox


Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - minimum investment

You can open a Hargreaves Lansdown fund and share account from as little as £1. A Hargreaves Lansdown ISA or SIPP requires a minimum investment of £100, or alternatively, you can start with a regular contribution of £25 per month. If you decide to invest in one of its ready-made portfolios (HL Portfolio+) then you'll need to start with a minimum investment of £1,000. While Moneybox doesn't have a minimum requirement, it does however have a monthly subscription fee of £1, although this is waived in the first 3 months. It doesn't charge a monthly subscription fee for its SIPP (see table above).

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - fees

In addition to Moneybox's subscription fee, it has a platform fee of 0.45%, which falls to 0.15% on balances over £100k within its pension product. Hargreaves Lansdown also has a sliding scale of platform fees, starting at 0.45% for investment balances up to £250,000, but this drops to 0.10% on any balance between £1m-£2m (there is no charge on any balance over £2m). See the above table for the full breakdown. It also has a separate fee model for share dealing, charging 0.45% for ISAs (up to a maximum of £45 per year), with dealing fees starting at £5.95 for 20 deals made in the previous calendar month, going up to £11.95 for 9 deals or fewer.

A differentiator between the two platforms is the additional fund charges for the ready-made portfolios, with Hargreaves Lansdown's HL Portfolio+ costing significantly more as they include actively managed funds, compared with Moneybox's passive portfolios. These range from 1.26% for the Hargreaves Lansdown Conservative Income portfolio up to 1.39% for its Adventurous Growth portfolio. By contrast, Moneybox has investment charges of between 0.12%-0.58% on average for its portfolios.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - products

Hargreaves Lansdown is characterised by the level of choice it offers, with the capacity to invest directly in more than 3,700 funds, shares, corporate and government bonds, ETFs and investment trusts. It also has an Active Savings account, cash ISA, as well as a stocks and shares ISA, GIA, Lifetime ISA (LISA), JISA, SIPP and Junior SIPP. By contrast, while Moneybox also has a range of savings accounts, including a cash LISA, it only has a stocks and shares ISA, GIA, JISA, LISA and SIPP. While this range is likely to be sufficient for the majority of users, investors with more experience may prefer the extra choice available with Hargreaves Lansdown.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - portfolios

While Hargreaves Lansdown allows investors to create their own investment portfolios, offering guidance through its Wealth Shortlist of recommended funds, it also has Master Portfolios, which consist of 5 example portfolios that the individual investor can tailor to their own requirements. Alternatively, the HL Portfolio+ range has 6 ready-made portfolios, with risk-rated options - Conservative, Balanced and Adventurous - with either a growth or income focus. These stand out from the ready-made portfolios offered by many other investment platforms as they are populated by active funds rather than passive vehicles.

For Moneybox, there is a more streamlined offering, with three portfolios: Cautious, Balanced and Adventurous. These are built from a range of tracker funds, although there is also the option for more confident investors to create their own portfolios from a choice of 25 underlying funds.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - ethical portfolios

While Hargreaves Lansdown doesn't have specific ready-made ethical portfolios, it does have an overarching "responsible investment" strategy, which includes trying to proactively encourage positive change in the companies it invests in through its own funds, as well as providing access to ethical funds for those who want to create their own portfolio. On the other hand, Moneybox has ethical portfolios that sit alongside its main range, mimicking the risk-rating structure but investing solely in passive funds with a SRI or ESG focus.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox - performance

With so many investment options available with Hargreaves Lansdown, it is difficult to draw a direct comparison between it and Moneybox. Even looking specifically at the ready-made portfolios - HL Portfolio+ and Moneybox Cautious, Balanced and Adventurous - the fact they are managed completely differently, with Hargreaves Lansdown combining its own actively run multi-manager funds to furnish its portfolios while Moneybox uses passive ETFs to construct its options, makes that tricky.

As such, you can find the past performance on the fund factsheets for Hargreaves Lansdown's portfolios, or in our full Hargreaves Lansdown review. For Moneybox, there is information on its longer-term track record in our Moneybox review, but below we list the returns for 2020 and 2021:

Moneybox returns in 2020/2021

Moneybox Portfolio Returns in 2020 Returns in 2021
Cautious 3.8% 5%
Balanced 8.4% 18.3%
Adventurous 8.6% 22.7%

Summary: Hargreaves Lansdown vs Moneybox

Hargreaves Lansdown* and Moneybox represent quite different propositions and are likely to attract different types of investors. As an app-only platform, with no minimum investment and pared back investment choice, Moneybox may appeal to a younger audience and perhaps those new to investing. That said, it has delivered strong returns over recent years and the fact it invests in tracker funds means costs are kept low.

By contrast, Hargreaves Lansdown has a wealth of choice, with options to invest directly in shares and funds, as well as having ready-made portfolios and a half-way house between the two with its Master Portfolios. It does, however, require a minimum investment of £1,000 if you wish to invest in one of its ready-made portfolios.


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