AJ Bell Youinvest Review – A Comprehensive True Analysis

Editorial Team
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AJ Bell Youinvest is the investment platform offered by AJ Bell, a public limited company listed on the London Stock Exchange and a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index. AJ Bell Youinvest is one of the earliest online borker services and claims to be the first platform offering online SIPP in the UK which is its flagship Self-Invested Personal Pension(SIPP) account.

The company holds about £52.3billion worth of assets under their managementbelonging to over two hundred and thirty thousand clients.

Prices

In terms of annual charges, AJ Bell Youinvest users have to pay 0.25% custode charge for shares which includes investment trusts, ETFs, gilts, and bods. The custody charge for shares is capped at £25 per quarter for SIPPs, and £7.50 per quarter for ISAs or Dealing accounts.

Coming to the charges based on funds, 0.25% custody charge is applicable on the first £250,000 of funds (including unit trusts, OEICs and structured products), 0.10% on the value of funds between £250,000 and £1m, and 0.05% on the value of funds between £1m and £2m. Funds above £2m have no custode charge at AJ Bell Youinvest.

In terms of trading, AJ Bell Youinvest charges £4.95 and £9.95 to trade shares and investment trusts online, depending on the frequency £1.50 to trade unit trusts and open-ended investment company funds online.

Security 

Being regulated by the FCA, the clients of AJ Bell Youinvest are covered under the FSCS scheme. This means that even if AJ Bell Youinvest went out of business, the clients will be compensated under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). This compensation is covered up to £85,000 of investments per person, per platform. This claim requires no claim management company can be done by the clients online, for free. Compensation for investment falling in value or poor performance is not covered under this scheme.

Features

Investing on AJ Bell Youinvest is simple and straightforward. Removing all the unnecessary functionalities present on other websites, AJ Bell Youinvest has been successful in enhancing the customer experience by providing support for investment choices such as detailed market analysis, stock research and tips.

AJ Bell Youinvest also provides a weekly shares magazine for members with more than £4,000 in their Youinvest account. The frequent traders of AJ Bell Youinvest are offered various types of incentives.

The easy trading at AJ Bell Youinvest is the result of features that allow to quickly buy a stock at a specific price, set stop-loss to sell the holdings at a particular price in case the value suddenly falls, and much more. As a result, the experienced traders find the AJ Bell Youinvest platform quite rejuvenating.

In terms of research, AJ Bell Youinvest provides a low-cost portfolio for the users who do not want to indulge themselves in stock and hare research. This portfolio comes with a choice of ready-made multi-asset portfolios.

Another popular feature available on the AJ Bell Youinvest platform is the Mywealth feature that allows you to view every single one of your assets and liabilities on a single page, including bank accounts, credit cards and loans and investment accounts with other providers.

While most traders would find the platform sufficient for their needs, the advanced traders might want to use some other platform for their need to use complex instruments such as CFDs.

Pros

  • The services usually charged for on other platforms are available for free at AJ Bell Youinvest.
  • AJ Bell Youinvest is subject to FCA Regulations which ensures further safety to the clients under the FSCS cover.
  • The trading costs offered at AJ Bell Youinvest are highly competitive.
  • The opening of an account at AJ Bell Youinvest requires no minimum deposit.

Cons

  • No demo account available
  • Limited payment options
  • Fewer ETFs as compared to other brokers

Account Types

Unlike most of its competitors who offer just one or two account types, AJ Bell Youinvest has four different account types. The variety in these account types allows AJ Bell Youinvest to provide the exact functionality according to the client’s needs and goals. The types are:

Dealing Account: The minimal age requirement to open a dealing account with AJ Bell Youinvest is 18 years. There is no limit on the annual savings that an individual can do at AJ Bell Youinvest. This allows individuals to invest in a wide array of funds, shares, and bonds. This account is usually subject to capital gains tax.

Individual Savings Account (ISA): Like dealing account, only a person above the age of 18 years can open an Individual Savings Account. The maximum annual limit for this account, in terms of savings, is £20,000. The account can be accessed at any times which means that there is unabated access to the funds in this account. This account type is void of any government or employer contribution.

Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP): Irrespective of the age, any person can open and operate a Self-Invested Personal Pension(SIPP) account with AJ Bell Youinvest. The maximum deposit limit of this account is £40,000 per year with a 20% tax relief which is equivalent to a 25% bonus. In addition to this, a user can also access and claim higher rates of tax relief.

Furthermore, the SIPP account can also contain top-up by the employer which is subject to the individual employers. The investment options available to the owners of this account are funds, shares, bonds, and trackers. Other terms associated with this account are that a SIPP account is subject to income tac and the funds present in a SIPP account can not be accessed by the owner until the age of 55. There are some exceptions that are made in case of ill health.

Junior ISA: If you are aged between 19 and 39, you can open a Junior ISA account with AJ Bell Youinvest. The maximum limit per year is £4000 and the general limit for all ISAs is  £20,000. A maximum of £1000 or a 25% bonus is enjoyed by the owners. The investment options are stocks, shares, bonds, and trackers. The funds can be accessed by the owner only at the age of retirement which is 60 years. In case a user accesses the funds before that, there is a penalty of 25% apart from the reason that you want to buy your first house. In case of a terminal illness, exceptions are there.

Customer Support

 The different emails available at AJ Bell Youinvest makes it quite easier to bifurcate the queries which allows them to provide better customer service. The official email for customer service is  [email protected], [email protected] is the official mail for dealing with services, and for the queries related to transfers, the email is [email protected].

Apart from this, AJ Bell Youinvest also provides customer support via online webchat. The timings for this webchat service is 8 AM to 5 PM on the weekdays.

To provide added security for the users, AJ Bell Youinvest leverages secure messaging functions for any communication between them and the user happening via the online form. This form is only available to the registered users and can be accessed only after a user is logged in to the platform.

The support over the call at AJ Bell Youinvest is available from 8 AM to 5 PM on the weekdays. The users can reach the service desk in this timeline at +44 (0) 345 5432 600.

For dealing services, call +44 (0) 345 3733 479, available from 8 am to 7 pm (Monday – Friday).

Payment Method

AJ Bell Youinvest offers only a few methods for fund transfers restricted to just debit cards, bank wires transfers, and personal checks. Payment through checks can take upto days which makes it an annoying process whereas the payment through debit cards are usually instant. AJ Bell Youinvest also offers the possibility of leveraging direct debit to set up regular payments. However, the absence of online payment solutions such as PayPal r Neteller is felt by some users who are heavily dependent on these methods.

The information regarding the various payment options available at AJ Bell Youinvest is mentioned below:

  1. Card Types: The payment through credit/debit card are the fastest means of funding your AJ Bell Youinvest account. The transactions done using this method are instantaneous and reflect immediately in the account. There is no limit on the transaction size and there is no fee charged on the transactions. However, this method is only suitable for deposits.
  2. Bank Wire Transfers: the Bank Wire Transfer method can be used for deposits as well as withdrawals. Just like payment with cards, there are no charges on transactions with Bank Wire Transfers at AJ Bell Youinvest. However, this method is relatively slow as it usually takes up to three working days to complete the transaction. The minimum limit for a deposit through Bank Wire Transfer is £25 while there is no upper limit to the transactions.
  3. Cheque: AJ Bell Youinvest is one of the few companies that accept transfer of funds through cheques. However, five business days is the normal processing time for transactions being completed via cheques. Just like Bank Wire Transfers, there is no maximum amount and a minimum amount of £25 is required. One key difference between transfers using cheque and Bank Wire Transfers is that no fee is charged when a transaction is being done via cheques but in case of Bank Wire Transfers, the bank charges a fee to the user.
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