Curiosity: why go with (example...) H/Lansdown, St James' Place?

Something I wondered recently after seeing someone here be with Hargreaves Lansdown.

What makes you be with costlier providers like them and St James' Place rather than go elsewhere?

I was with H/Lansdown for years but as I learned more & the important of fees (although not the be all & end all), I found I could get the exact same funds I was investing in elsewhere for about half of what H/L were charging me - so I jumped. 

So just wondered what kept people investing with costlier providers? Is it because you can't get your investments elsewhere? Don't care for fees? They offer something really great that I've overlooked when I jumped ship?


  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,969
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    Within the MSE bubble, there's plenty of choosing providers based primarily (or wholly) on price, but for the population at large the criteria do often encompass (perceptions of) customer service, reputation, scale, marketing, etc, and the likes of HL and SJP are more prominent on those measures....
  • Rich1976
    Rich1976 Posts: 484
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    Customer service, a decent app and website . Basically HL do what they should do without any ( or very few errors) in the 17 years I’ve been with them. Their charging structure is easy to understand. For instance they do not charge for swapping funds or for investing regularly. They also take the annual charge straight from the fund without the need for a separate direct debit or other faff to pay them.

    i was with Vanguard for a period of a few months based purely on fees and their reputation but their customer service was no where as good as HL and the amount of basic errors they made were really disappointing.

    ive looked at Interactive Investor but didn’t like their website and found it difficult to find funds unless you knew the names of them and that weren’t in their top funds they were promoting .

    also looked at AJ Bell but they charge a £1.50 regular investing fee which when you add to their 0.25% annual fee I calculated would only save me about 0.10% compared to what I pay HL for the same fund. They also require a separate payment to be made for the charges I think which would mean I would need to make more money available just to pay this or reduce the amount I invest monthly to compensate.

    so those are my reasons. I’m sure others will come back with counter arguments but it is not like inertia has stopped me moving. I have looked in great detail but appreciate the hassle free, stress free experience HL provide.
  • wmb194
    wmb194 Posts: 3,131
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    HL's terrible* and I don't rate its website or app but it's useful for certain things e.g., it doesn't charge a fee to hold corporate bonds.

    *I spent a couple of days figuring out why I couldn't withdraw a bond's coupon payment. I thought it just needed to clear or something but it turned out that I needed to transfer it from an income(?) account to a capital account and then I could withdraw it, all hidden away in the web interface. Absolutely ridiculous.
  • masonic
    masonic Posts: 22,914
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    edited 23 December 2023 at 6:43PM
    I'm quite tempted to transfer to HL for their generous cashback offer. I think I can afford to pay £80 extra for my SIPP for a year, and I'd actually save money on my S&S ISA if I moved it there now that Interactive Investor is giving back less and charging more. I have to wait for the clawback period for my last SIPP transfer incentive to expire before moving again.
  • I recently moved investment trusts from CSD to HL.
    I love the customer service from HL, which so far has been second to none and their monthly investment scheme is great value. I invest in ITs monthly into each of my accounts free of charges. The cost saving is not to be sniffed at.
    I like the website too - easy to navigate and much more user friendly than some others.
  • TBC15
    TBC15 Posts: 1,443
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper

    For some reason a few people feel comforted having an extra hand in their pocket.

  • ColdIron
    ColdIron Posts: 8,690
    First Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic First Post
    TBC15 said:

    For some reason a few people feel comforted having an extra hand in their pocket

    Care to expand upon that?
  • boingy
    boingy Posts: 1,171
    First Post Name Dropper
    I use HL because they offer a handy £25 monthly DD that qualifies for bank switches. I don't invest. I just draw the £25 back out each month and turn off the DD when I don't need it.

    If anyone here invests with them please check their fees and think again... :D 
  • jaypers
    jaypers Posts: 654
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    I really like HL. Whenever I’ve need help they are easy to contact and just reliable generally. Probably a silly notion but with investments I feel a little more reassured being with a company such as them rather than a bargain basement outfit. 
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