Vanguard vs Nutmeg: What do they offer and how much do they charge?

3 min Read Published: 07 Nov 2023

Vanguard vs NutmegIf you are choosing between investment platforms Vanguard and Nutmeg, it is useful to compare their key features, including the services they offer and the fees they charge. In this article, we put their propositions side by side, helping you work out which might be the best place to put your money.

We also have a reader offer with Nutmeg, which provides 12 months fee-free management (terms and conditions apply).

Vanguard vs Nutmeg - which is better?

Vanguard Nutmeg 
Services LifeStrategy funds

Target Retirement funds

Personal financial advice for retirement planning

Fixed Allocation portfolios

Fully Managed portfolios

Socially Responsible portfolios

Smart Alpha portfolios

Thematic investing

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

Managed ISA

ISA, GIA (General Investment Account), Lifetime ISA, Junior ISA and SIPP
Minimum investment £500 or £100 monthly investment £500 (£100 for JISA and LISA)
Platform fees 0.15% annual account fee (capped at £375)

0.45% annual account fee for its Managed ISA (capped at £1,125)

Additional underlying fund charges

On the value of your portfolio up to £100,000 - 0.75%

Over £100,000 - 0.35%

Additional underlying fund charges

Customer reviews (Trustpilot) 4.1/5.0 3.6/5.0
Money to the Masses offer n/a No management fees for 12 months (terms and conditions apply)

Vanguard vs Nutmeg - services

Vanguard is best known for its popular Lifestrategy range, which offers 5 risk-rated portfolios at a low cost. It also has Target Retirement funds as well as financial advice for those planning their retirement. It recently launched a Managed ISA offering a range of 5 risk-rated ready-made portfolios. The portfolios are aimed at those new to investing or who perhaps prefer to let somebody else make the investment decisions for them. It's worth bearing in mind though that Vanguard's portfolios are made up of only Vanguard's own funds.

Nutmeg, meanwhile, has 10 risk-rated portfolios in its Fully Managed and Socially Responsible offerings. For those looking for lower costs, the Fixed Allocation portfolios have limited intervention in terms of management, with the assets reviewed once a year. At the other end of the spectrum, Nutmeg's Smart Alpha portfolios are managed by a team from J.P.Morgan Asset Management and are adjusted in line with market and conditions. In October 2023 Nutmeg launched three thematic investment styles – Technological Innovation, Resource transformation and Evolving Consumer. Nutmeg's thematic investment option provides a globally diversified, risk-adjusted portfolio with a tilt (up to 20% of equity exposure) towards your chosen theme. The majority of the portfolio is actively managed by Nutmeg's investment team, whilst the 'tilted' part of the portfolio is made up of the ETFs which will be reviewed annually.

Vanguard vs Nutmeg - products

Both Vanguard and Nutmeg have similar product ranges, offering ISAs, GIAs, Junior ISAs and SIPPs. However, Nutmeg additionally has a Lifetime ISA, which allows people to save for their first home or retirement. If you are particularly interested in a Lifetime ISA, read our article "Lifetime ISAs explained - are they the best way to save?", which outlines the criteria you need to meet and the advantages and disadvantages of this vehicle.

Vanguard vs Nutmeg - minimum investment

Vanguard and Nutmeg have a minimum investment requirement of £500, although this falls to £100 for Nutmeg's Junior ISA and Lifetime ISA. Additionally, Vanguard has the option to make a regular £100 investment instead of paying a £500 initial lump sum.

Vanguard vs Nutmeg - platform fees

Vanguard is known for having particularly low fees, charging a flat fee of 0.15% irrespective of the amount invested, although there is a cap of £375 per annum for accounts worth over £250,000. This makes it markedly cheaper than Nutmeg's platform fees, although the range of funds you are invested in will be more diverse than with Vanguard, which constructs its portfolios solely from its in-house fund range.

Vanguard vs Nutmeg - customer reviews

Both Vanguard and Nutmeg are well reviewed by their users, scoring 4.1 and 3.6 out of 5.0, respectively, according to independent customer review site Trustpilot. Vanguard was praised for its low cost and the ease of use of its site, while Nutmeg received good reviews for its customer service proposition.

Summary - Vanguard vs Nutmeg

If you are looking to keep costs down, Vanguard's highly competitive pricing structure is hard to ignore. However, if you prefer to not be limited to Vanguard funds for your underlying portfolio, Nutmeg includes a range of different investment houses. It also has the option to go for its Fixed Allocation or Smart Alpha portfolios, which might be better suited to certain types of investors.

For more information on both platforms, read our Vanguard review and Nutmeg review.