Compare investment platforms

Find the lowest cost investment platform for your pattern of investing. Compare charges for 15 top online platforms for DIY investing in the UK, including Hargreaves Lansdown, Fidelity and Bestinvest. Get a tailored comparison based on your investment amounts, trading behaviour and timeframe – plus other factors to help you decide.

Please check the notes to understand the calculations used and assumptions made.

This tool compares general investment accounts. You can also compare platforms for Stocks and Shares ISAs or SIPP pensions.

Please remember that the value of investments and the income from them can fall as well as rise. You may not get back the full amount invested. The information on this page is not a personal recommendation to invest; if in doubt, please seek financial advice.

Understand the results from this tool

To provide you with these results we’ve made calculations based on your inputs, and used some assumptions to ensure a fair comparison between platforms.

In real-world conditions it’s not possible to forecast exactly what you will be charged and how much you will get back. The figures in the table are for comparison purposes only to help you choose a platform.

Here is how we have worked things out:

  1. Assumed rate of return. Although investment growth is not guaranteed, the aim of investing in stocks and shares is to increase your portfolio value over time – and the longer your investment timeframe, the greater the probability you will make a positive return (particularly when you reinvest dividends and other income received).

    Of course, since many platform charges are based on the value of your portfolio, this growth will also increase the charges that you pay. So, in order to better estimate your platform charges we have included a rate of growth in your projected portfolio value.

    If you use the simple cost comparison, we assume 5.4% annual growth based on the average annual total return from the FTSE 100 index over the last two decades.

    If you use the more detailed comparison, you can set your own percentage rate of growth. You might find our asset allocation guide helpful in setting realistic expectations.
  2. Total platform charges. This is an aggregate of all the charges we estimate you will incur over the whole time period using each platform for the investing pattern you indicated if using the more detailed comparison, or the assumed behaviour if using the simple cost comparison (see note 5). We have calculated fees inclusive of VAT where applicable.

    If you are investing in funds, annual fund management charges are not included in this calculation. Platforms can negotiate charges directly with funds and some may be slightly lower than others. Fund charges will affect your ongoing costs and estimated returns.

    Regular platform charges
    Charges are calculated assuming an annual equivalent rate. If a platform applies charges quarterly or bi-annually, we assume that these are collected every 3 or 6 months from the date of comparison. Some platforms may collect this charge on specific dates. Any setup costs are offset against the annual percentage return.

    Occasional charges
    We have assumed that the costs associated with fund and share dealing are spread out throughout the year using a fixed distribution model (for example, if you select 3 share trades per year, we assume they take place in months 1, 5 and 9). The frequency and distribution may be different in practice. Our estimates for share dealing costs do not include Stamp Duty and the PTM levy.

    We've assumed a maximum of 9 share trades in a month, so we haven't attempted to calculate lower trading costs that some platforms provide for frequent traders. If you input more than 108 trades in a year, your charges will be overestimated.
  3. Projected portfolio value after platform charges. This is a projection of how much your portfolio could be worth at the end of your comparison timeframe with platform charges taken into account. The calculator assumes that no withdrawals are made during the investment period. Growth is calculated and compounded monthly, and charges are deducted as described in note 2 above.

    There are a lot of assumptions used in this projection (for example, a continuous and even rate of growth) and we haven't included the charges for selling all your holdings or any fees for transferring funds back to you. We also don't know your tax position so we haven't taken into account any Income Tax or Capital Gains liabilities. Therefore please use this figure only to help you compare the effect of platform costs and not as an indication of the amount you should get back.
  4. Platform charges as percentage. This is simply the total charges over the period (2) expressed as a percentage of the projected portfolio value (3), and is provided as a summary of the comparison. It doesn't imply that a percentage based fee is charged throughout, as the platforms may have very different ways of structuring their charges – a brief description of the charge structure is shown when you expand the ‘More Details’ box for each platform.
  5. Assumed investment behaviour for the simple cost comparison. If you use the simple cost comparison option, we assume your lump sum is held in funds and your regular contributions are used to buy more units in one fund you already hold. No share dealing charges are taken into account.

    To tailor the comparison to a different investing pattern please use the more detailed comparison option.
  6. General assumptions. All calculations are performed on the following basis:
    • Contributions are made at the beginning of month
    • Any per-deal charges for share trading or fund purchase are applied at the beginning of month
    • Growth is calculated at the end of the month (using monthly equivalent, i.e. growth rate ^1/12) then compounded monthly throughout the year
    • For regular contributions, if you select “funds” or “shares” as the destination, we assume the whole amount goes into a single fund or share that's already owned within the portfolio. If you select “funds and shares”, we assume half the amount goes into one fund and one share that's already owned.
    • If you input a lump sum plus a regular contribution, we assume the first contribution is taken after one month.
  7. Feedback. If you have any questions or comments about this tool please contact us, we'd be pleased to hear from you.

Apply for an investment account

Wherever possible in the table above we have provided you with a direct link to apply for an account on the platform of your choice. YourWealth receives a fee if you go ahead and open an account via that link. This does not affect the order of results in the table – they are displayed in order of cost so you can make a fair comparison.

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