Personal Capital Review 2017

Last updated on July 25th, 2017

I write this Personal Capital review as a long-time user. I’ve used Personal Capital for several years to track our income, expenses, and net worth. I hope this review will help readers better understand the service.

Personal Capital is best described as a “financial account aggregator.” After connecting your bank account, credit cards, mortgage or auto loans, investment accounts, and any other financial accounts, the free service will summarize your financial situation and offer personal financial planning guidance.

Personal Capital is similar to Mint’s online budgeting service, but much more comprehensive. Like Mint, Personal Capital provides a comprehensive budgeting solution. Unlike Mint, Personal Capital provides a robust set of tools and resources to help you manage your investment portfolio, asset allocation, taxes, and retirement planning. All of these services are provided free of charge.

More than 1,400,000 users are now using the free Personal Capital platform to track more than $350 Billion in assets. In addition to the excellent free financial tools, Personal Capital is a Registered Investment Adviser (RIA) managing nearly $5 Billion in assets under management.

Here is a brief introduction by the founder, Bill Harris, on the purpose of Personal Capital:

Your Personal Capital Dashboard

After opening a free account, you first link your financial accounts to the online interface. This involves authorizing each account within Personal Capital. I found this to be extremely easy and efficient on the desktop version of the program. You simply click a small plus arrow, specify the type of account, and fill in the online credentials.

After linking your accounts, they remain linked until you unlink them or change any of the account information (password, login info, etc.). Each day, your account information is automatically updated in real time.

The site then aggregates all of your financial information into a colorful series of charts and graphs to help you make sense of your income, expenses, and investments, allowing you to better understand your financial situation.

Personal Capital Review

The online interface provides information about your:

  • Income
  • Spending
  • Net Worth
  • Asset Allocation
  • Investment Fees
  • Investment Returns

Within each category, you can explore all of the nitty, gritty details.

Personal Capital Budgeting

Personal Capital allows you to easily create a budget, set a monthly spending target, and view your progress in real time.

If you select your income profile within the Personal Capital dashboard, you can see all forms of income broken down by date and source. If you have multiple bank accounts, you can see the deposit information for each account, as well as the aggregate total income.

Personal Capital Budget

Similarly, you can track your spending down to the penny. Every credit card swipe. Every debit card swipe. Every bank transaction. All can be viewed in your account dashboard in real time.

You can also analyze each purchase and categorize spending by date, merchant, and category.

Personal Capital Cash Flow Review

Personal Capital also allows you to stay on track of bill payments. You can view previous payments made and upcoming bills that are due, as well as the minimum payment required and the total balance outstanding.

Personal Capital Bill Function

 

These different features all blend seamlessly for an excellent user experience. Because of the robust features, I now prefer the Personal Capital interface to Mint’s online interface.

Retirement Planner and Investment Checkup Tools

Personal Capital recently released their retirement planning tool, which allows you to know exactly where you stand relative to your retirement goals. Now you can build, manage, and forecast your retirement savings in one convenient location. The tool pulls in your actual financial data from the accounts you’ve linked to Personal Capital and lets you add your personal information and expected life events. The tool can help assess the following information for you:

  • Your Retirement Readiness – Using your actual financial data from the accounts you’ve linked to the Personal Capital Dashboard, you’ll see how prepared you are for retirement based on your target retirement date.
  • Expected Income – The Retirement Planner automatically calculates your expected monthly income and projected Social Security benefits. You can easily add in other sources of income such as rental income, pensions, inheritances or other windfalls.
  • Upcoming Goals – Planning for college? Buying a new home? Getting married? Adopting a child? Input these events into the Retirement Planner, and the tool will evaluate if you can afford these large expenses and still stay on track for retirement.

The “Investment Checkup” tool is also worth mentioning. You must complete a basic risk profiling questionnaire, along with a few other basic questions about your investment goals. Upon completion, Personal Capital presents a graph showing their recommended portfolio and asset allocation.

Personal Capital Investment Checkup

The tool explains the risk and return characteristics associated with your portfolio. You can compare the recommended portfolio to your current investments to see the differences in asset allocation, performance, and overall risk. In addition, Personal Capital includes a fee analyzer that will list the fees that you currently pay on your investments. This feature is supposed to calculate hidden fees that are often overlooked, as well as management fees and expenses.

In addition, Personal Capital includes a fee analyzer that will list the fees that you currently pay on your investments. This feature is supposed to calculate hidden fees that are often overlooked, as well as management fees and expenses.

Personal Capital Fees

The services I’ve just described are completely free, but Personal Capital does offer an optional asset management service.

Personal Capital is a registered investment advisor providing the free services to attract more affluent site users – particularly those with investable assets of at least $100,000. If a user has $100,000 or more, Personal Capital offers professional financial advice and the ability to work with a financial advisor (typically well trained with credentials). Personal Capital makes money by taking a percentage of the assets under management, or AUM.

The annual fees for their investment services are as follows:

  • $0 – $1,000,000: 0.89% of account balance
  • For clients that invest $1 Million or more:
    • First $3 Million: 0.79% of account balance
    • Next $2 Million: 0.69% of account balance
    • Next $5 Million: 0.59% of account balance
    • Over $10 Million: 0.49% of account balance

There is no obligation to pay for this service, and there are quality alternatives on the market providing asset management services for less than 0.25% annually.

Personal Capital Security Review

The security is very good overall, with numerous protections in place to protect your financial accounts.

Personal Capital requires you to register each electronic device that you use. They will send you an email or call your cell phone to register each device. After registering a device, there is another layer of security that is used when linking financial accounts to your Personal Capital account. You must sign in and verify the original online account in addition to your Personal Capital login. Data is encrypted with AES-256 with multi-layer key management, including rotating user-specific keys and salts.

There are also strict internal access controls. The account information you enter within Personal Capital isn’t stored in plain text, and no individual at Personal Capital has access to your credentials. Your bank and brokerage credentials are encrypted and stored at Yodlee (a financial technology veteran), not in Personal Capital’s database. All information is encrypted as read-only, which prevents anyone from accessing your full accounts and initiating any withdrawals or transfers from within Personal Capital’s service.

Personal Capital operates under SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) jurisdiction and is audited for compliance with SEC cybersecurity regulations. Furthermore, Personal Capital’s website encryption is rated “A” by the independent Qualys SSL Labs (a stronger rating than most major banks or brokerages).

The Good

  • Comprehensive Service – Personal Capital allows you easily manage your entire financial life using one secure interface. You can calculate your net worth, set a budget, manage investment accounts, and plan for retirement.
  • Friendly Reminders – Personal Capital includes an automated email feature that summarizes weekly changes in your net worth. You can choose to receive other alerts and bill payments reminders as well.
  • Valuable Tools – At no additional cost, Personal Capital provides numerous tools to help you make better financial decisions. These tools can help reduce your taxable income, improve your asset allocation, lower your investment fees, and track your investment performance over time.
  • Technology  – The interface is very intuitive and Personal Capital can be used on a computer, tablet, or smartphone. The Personal Capital app integrates seamlessly, making it easy to check your accounts on the go.
  • Ease of Use – Getting started and syncing accounts is incredibly easy with Personal Capital. In addition, the graphs and charts provide valuable financial information that is easy to read and understand.

The Bad

  • Investment Management Fees – Their investment management service isn’t horribly priced, but it’s higher than other online competitors. 

The Ugly

  • Bugs and Glitches – Early on, Personal Capital had some technical issues on the site that made the user experience a little bit irritating. However, over the last 2-3 years, they have improved the interface and usability. Since ironing out the early bugs, I have not witnessed technical issues when linking or managing my accounts. Some users still report issues when linking certain financial accounts, but this is becoming increasingly rare with each update.

Personal Capital Review Summary

I love the free services provided by Personal Capital. There is nothing else on the market that offers comparable value for the low price of $0.00.

I don’t pay for their investment advice, but I know many readers are happy with the service. The management fees are comparable to many financial advisors, so I’ll leave that decision up to you.

Bottom line – grab a free account today and get started. You won’t be sorry.

Personal Capital Review 2017
Summary
Personal Capital allows you to track and monitor your income, expenses, and investment accounts, all for free. Highly Recommended.
Pricing10
Features9.7
Ease of Use9.5
Customer Support7.8
Strengths
Easy-to-use interface
Full-featured mobile app
Excellent budgeting tools
Weaknesses
Occasional bugs
9.3
Overall
Comments
  1. Pingback: Blooom Review 2017 | The Automated Investing Solution for 401(k) Plans

    • Elia
    • July 2, 2017
    Reply

    Thank you for the wonderful review. I’m considering switching over to PC from mint and have a few questions I was hoping somebody could answer.

    1. I have a mortgage with homestreet bank. Will PC sync with this? It’s been broken with mint for over two years.
    2. When computing investment performance, will PC account for transactions in the past? Or will it be based on the date I sync my accounts?

      • Jacob
      • July 3, 2017
      Reply

      Hi Elia,
      1) That’s a very specific inquiry that I can’t help with, but I would recommend that you create and account and try it out. It’s free.
      2) You should be able to sync past financial transactions after creating your account. I’m not entirely sure because I’ve had an account for several years now.

    • Donna
    • June 29, 2017
    Reply

    I stumbled across this blog while trying to learn more about PC, and have found it very informative, thank you all, for your comments. I was unaware of robo and the various investment options available and basically always left the investing to the so called pros and assumed they were getting me the best returns. However, apparantly, based on some of the comments, I have been overpaying for financial planning for the past 40 years, as I pay a minimum of 1.2% on top of trade costs and fund fees, and sometimes more with a private advisor. I am more of a hands off investor but since I am just starting retirement I began to take a closer look at services available. My concerns with PC is the newness as opposed to a long standing presence of other financial service companies who charge more. My impression is that their investing model, and evaluation is geared more toward of those in their 30 – 40’s but will it work effectively for someone in their 60’s? I realize that there is no guarantee wherever you invest, but I have always thought that the fees charged correlated to the reputation and performance of the company’s investment model, was I flawed in my assumption? Can a service that charges reduced fees provide the same level of financial guidance and performance as those that charge double? Is this the one time you get what you pay for not true?

  2. Pingback: Our Minimalist Lifestyle: Living on $1,000/month | Cash Cow Couple

  3. Pingback: Participating in the markets |

    • Steveark
    • May 25, 2017
    Reply

    I have used Personal Capital’s free site for about three years and have given them a portion of my investment portfolio to manage for a year and a half. I pay .79% since I put enough in to get the first price break. I’m pretty satisfied with their net of fees performance and the phone calls with my assigned advisers. They’d love to get the rest of my portfolio but I’m comparing them to Vanguard and Betterment and plan to ride through one market correction and recovery to determine which portfolio is overall more robust. They did give me and my wife a pair of nice ipad 4 mini’s which concerned me because I know that is coming out of my fees more or less plus I hate Apple (I’m an engineer, we just don’t like Apple stuff). But if I had to consolidate right now I’d go with Personal Capital. As far as the free tools, there is nothing comparable that I know. If you are early retired like me then it is really cool to check your net worth and see it is increasing even though you aren’t working full time anymore!

      • Jay
      • June 17, 2017
      Reply

      Hi Steveark,

      Great advise. I am almost in the same boat as yours but I do not have enough idea on how I can make myself retire early with barely $1m investment.

  4. Pingback: What is a Budget and Why is it Important? | Cash Cow Couple

  5. Pingback: PersonalCapital Calling | WhatllB Blog

  6. Pingback: Expenses Exposed - A Shocking Look at Our First Year of Marriage

  7. Pingback: How to Save Your First $1,000 and Tips to Start Saving Money - Really Make Cents

  8. Pingback: Setting Financial Goals: The Complete Guide | Cash Cow Couple

    • GP
    • April 10, 2017
    Reply

    Hi
    Day 2 of using PC. I have 2 questions:
    1. Does the retirement planner project 401K contributions automatically or do I need to add it as a recurring Income Event? What about other assets like ?
    2. Does it consider the mortgage and auto loan repayments while calculating retirement spending goals automatically or do I need to include it while putting in the spending goal number?

    Thanks in advance

      • Jacob
      • April 11, 2017
      Reply

      I believe you should manually enter each of those items.

    • Andrea
    • March 2, 2017
    Reply

    I have officially moved some assets to PC and was just looking around for any reviews (better late than never?) because I was worried all night that I’d made a bad decision. Anyway, there’s alot of info here and I appreciate everyones input. While PCs fees are higher than some, they’re lower than where I’ve been for the past 7 years or so and that is one my bigger reasons for giving them a try. I will have a meeting with a dedicated advisor next week and have a better idea of my decision then, but as of now – my concern is that I have equities with 800% gains and the like – PC has advised me many times that I am not diversified enough and although I agree – the only way to pay for more diversity is to sell and pay the cap. gains taxes – I have faced this dilemma for years now and can only wonder what plan they will suggest. Anyway, now I’m rambling, I’ll try to give any input I have over the next couple of months in case it helps someone. Also, I am a long-time quicken and quickbooks user as well – I’m sure I will still keep my personal software updated as well as PC dashboard…

      • Bobby
      • April 17, 2017
      Reply

      How was your experience? I’m considering the same transition and was a little wary because I’m not familiar with them. Thanks.

    • Mike
    • January 29, 2017
    Reply

    Hi Jacob,
    Terrific review, thank you. Our company uses ADP payroll services. Do you know if PC can download from any payroll companies to include deductions for healthcare, etc?
    Thanks,
    Mike

      • Jacob
      • February 1, 2017
      Reply

      Hi Mike, not sure about that specific inquiry.

    • Aj
    • January 21, 2017
    Reply

    Great article and PC review Jacob.
    I have been using PC free service from beginning the started. Pretty happy and last week I had initial meeting to consider moving some asset under PC RIA.
    I”m just planning to move some asset but I was told that PC advisor will review /recommend investment 401K/IRA even not under.
    I have 2nd meeting next week where they will show me why I should use them and what they can offer.
    All my investment is in vanguard index funds which is supper low (avg .10).
    I ‘m wondering if moving partial invest under PC RIA control is good idea? How was their holistic approach for other investments which are not under PC advisor managed? I’m nervous about moving taxable investment to PC RIA. Any word of advise and caution will be highly appreciated.

    • Ash
    • January 17, 2017
    Reply

    I use their free service and I like it – Prior to using this service, I was tracking all of my accounts on a spreadsheet but that meant having to login to 20-25 different sites.

    Also, their notifications are pretty good – Just received one that said “You’ve saved 92% of the average tax-deferred investments (like IRA & 401K) for your age group among Personal Capital users”

    • Dave Sander
    • January 11, 2017
    Reply

    I just signed up for PC’s paid services this evening…before I read these comments! I happened to get on the dashboard and it said my mutual fund fees were too high at .39%. I’ve just emailed my advisor to ask how that statement gels with their fee being well higher than the fees I already pay. We’ll see what he has to say.
    Overall, I do like the idea of someone managing the investments for me. I’ve been doing it myself for a while and I haven’t done poorly, but I’m not very diversified. I’ve tried in vane to get specific advice from professionals on how best to diversify on my own. At $125K in retirement accounts to manage, some firms won’t even talk to me because my balance isn’t high enough (Edward Jones, etc.). Currently everything is in Fidelity, which is free, but I haven’t been able to get much advice from them either. They give a number of generalizations but nothing too specific. So, I moved over the bulk of the funds to PC and I’ll see what happens. I still have my 401(k) and pension with Fidelity and I can always move things back if I don’t like the way things are going.

      • Jim D
      • March 8, 2017
      Reply

      Hey Dave. PC’s fees are yearly. So that would be $4,450 on an investment of $500K. If you mutual fund fees are monthly ($23,400) or quarterly ($7,800) that could be the difference. I’ve got $1.5M in my IRA that I’ve been managing by myself for quite a while. My annual fees would be around $11,800, or just a little less that $1k/mo. So the equation is, can they make more than what we would do self-directed + the fee? They claim to be able to, but would love to hear from anyone who’s used them for a while…

      • Jim Wright
      • January 16, 2017
      Reply

      To get some good ideas about diversification, do a search for “Ultimate Buy and Hold Strategy”. Paul Merriman’s information will come up including diversified allocations for taxable and non-taxable accounts using Vanguard Funds, Fidelity Funds etc. Based on portfolio theory of (semi) non-correlated asset classes. Good luck!

    • Gary
    • December 29, 2016
    Reply

    I really value the information posted here by new and long time users. Particularly Jacob’s comments. I have dozens of accounts scattered across across Vanguard, Fidelity, Wells Fargo, American Express, etc, etc. PC looks good, but I see no way to download data. Downloaded data has saved my bacon on many occasions when Quicken failed, Cloud storage files went away, or software “upgrades” left my earlier data unreachable.
    Can PC allow me be save data to my computer.

      • JR
      • April 4, 2017
      Reply

      You can download transaction data if you go to the transactions tab. From there you can select the “CSV” icon a the top and download. I generally use Firefox when doing this download – I believe in the past this functionality was not available with internet explorer and other browsers although they may have fixed that.

    • Terry
    • December 4, 2016
    Reply

    Just came across your site here Jacob and could be me writing so many of the questions/comments here. I am considering PC and this has sure answered some of the questions i had as well as coming up with some questions i should have had !! Thanks for the site and i will certainly be following it. Terry

    • Don
    • November 24, 2016
    Reply

    Nice site and your explanations are clear and concise. I am amazed by the interest in Personal Capital. I had to give it a try, I had looked at Mint and many others over the years. Nothing seemed to work quite right or give me what I was looking for, an aggregating view (Personal Capital does very well) and some personal accounting for taxes (neh, not sure it’s there).
    I did just have a 2nd or 3rd conversation with the paid side and I don’t think it’s for me. But I can see that it could be really valuable for many people and so I feel positive about it in general. I wouldn’t hesitate with at least a small account to test the waters. I have found that since the regulations restrict so much about what a firm can tell you about it’s results that the only way to really see how a program works is to try it. I have tried many, most do not work the way I thought they would, both in good and bad ways.
    I worked with Pershing many years ago and found them to be a very upstanding firm.
    Has anyone found any sort of bill paying approach for the fee program? Once they have you money, can you pay your bills?

      • JsH
      • December 23, 2016
      Reply

      No. There is no bill paying and that’s a good thing. There is nothing you can accomplish from the PC site other than view and manipulate the data into information.

  9. Pingback: Best Financial Blog List 2016

    • Cat
    • August 31, 2016
    Reply

    This is a great review. Came across it as I am trying to decide of their services are worth it for me. I do love PC’s dashboard and the way it consolidates all of my accounts into one. I’ve used Betterment as well, but feel that they lack choices, but I guess that’s the point of robo advisors is to keep it simple and automated. It would be nice to have a fiduciary and an expert manage my money to get the best return, but is the fee worth it? I’m still deciding.

      • Jack
      • November 29, 2016
      Reply

      Have you decided yet? I’m having a hard time making that decision. If you have decided, I would appreciate knowing what conclusion you came to and how you got to it. Thanks in advance.

  10. Pingback: Picking the Right Mortgage to Match Your Needs.

  11. Pingback: Investing Risk - Sure Dividend Sure Dividend

    • Carey
    • July 12, 2016
    Reply

    Nice review. I just started using Personal Capital and it seems like a useful tool for retirement planning and tracking personal wealth. I am quite enthused about the free services.

    I found it interesting that you picked up on the cost of their paid investment services as a drawback as that was also something that immediately caught my attention. Interestingly, when I run the 401k fee analyzer, it tells me that my annual fees are .67%, slightly above the Personal Capital benchmark of .50%. The website tells me that this difference will result in 3 years of lost retirement to fees. So if .50% is their benchmark, and anything about that is eating into my retirement, why would I want to pay them an even higher .89% annual fee? It just doesn’t make sense…

      • Joe
      • July 26, 2016
      Reply

      Carey,

      Not to “One Up” you, but I just decided to self manage my retirement funds at Vanguard. I go the expense ratio down to 0.18%. Once when I logged onto Personal Capital it said my fees were too high and my Personal Capital Advisor could help reduce them – for a fee of 0.89%! So it they could drop my expenses to zero, I would still 0.69% more in the hole to them! No wonder financial advisors are so suspect regarding their character. And online versions are not always much better.

      Joe B

        • Michael
        • October 14, 2016
        Reply

        Joe,
        Personal Capital claims that by investing in the direct indexing (personalized basket of stocks) rather than ETFs you get a better performance than that of an ETF portfolio at one of the robo-advisors. If that is true, the combination of better performance and no ETF fees could potentially produce better P&L.

          • Carey
          • July 20, 2017
          Reply

          It doesn’t work that way though. You can’t ignore underlying fund performance when determining that fees are “excessive” and then turn around and say “it is ok to pay us higher fees because our products will perform better.” That is the definition of getting suckered.

    • Don Hilario
    • June 8, 2016
    Reply

    nice, thanks for sharing.
    the free account aggregation tool is their strength.
    their quality of Financial Advisors is low.

    i reached out to them a year ago to inquire –
    it was distasteful.
    after they qualified me they connected me to an FA from CO, meanwhile the initial contact (likely an unregistered cold caller or CSA equivalent) was from SF (I know this because of the area codes, but that’s beside the point). I have no problem with virtual/mobile locations but both the FA and CSA were trying to come off like they were in an office setting together. Strike 1.

    Then the FA sounded like he was reading a questionnaire from Investopedia; following some lame template of how to close me. Strike 2.

    Lastly, while I was on the phone with the FA – I pulled him up on BrokerCheck, I loved how he was also employed as a sports-betting agent. Strike 3.

    free service does not equal quality. lesson re-affirmed.

    thanks again for sharing.

    • Paul Mc.
    • May 23, 2016
    Reply

    Does Personal Capital have the ability to track rental real estate? I have several rental homes.

      • melissa
      • June 16, 2016
      Reply

      i just started using it and yes it does. you can add the property as a Home, and also add the mortgage.

    • Bruce mesnekoff
    • May 21, 2016
    Reply

    Thanks for Information about Personal Capital Review . Your Article is impressive and very informative. I am now regular visitor of your website and bookmarked it.

    • mtb
    • May 14, 2016
    Reply

    HI – Great Discussion here!! Do you or does anybody know that if I start to use PC’s Advisory services and place funds under their management, if I would be able to see the details of those funds in QUICKEN. I still use QUICKEN for budgeting and checkbook balancing, etc, and it would sure be nice to see my whole Net Worth tracked there, as it currently is. Anybody know anything about a Pershing/Mellon Hook for Quicken that would capture the PC-managed details? Thanks!

      • Bill
      • July 5, 2017
      Reply

      Yes, you get a Pershing login and can use it to access your holdings in Quicken (or using the Pershing app).

      • melissa
      • June 16, 2016
      Reply

      I would love to know, too. I am a power user of Quicken and considering using PC. Please, someone that has started using Adisory, tell us!

        • Charlie
        • August 23, 2016
        Reply

        I have used Quicken since 1992, PC only for about 8 months and only recently to much degree. PC does have many similarities to Quicken – transaction detail, categorization, total net worth and more. Quicken though provides a bit more granularity. For example, I don’t think you can “split” categorization in PC the way you can in Quicken. I’m kind of hoping I can dump Quicken for PC as Quicken is increasing over-featured and costly.

  12. Reply

    Thanks for the review, good to know that they take security very seriously. Unfortunately for us Canadians, Personal Capital doesn’t work. Would love to be able to use this great tool more though.

      • Ken
      • September 15, 2016
      Reply

      Hi Tawcan,
      Could you please expand on your comment “PC doesn’t work”

        • Shannon
        • October 21, 2016
        Reply

        Personal Capital does not link to Canadian accounts. Would be great to have expansion into Canada sometime soon.

          • DJA
          • May 25, 2017
          Reply

          Don’t know when the last comment was made, but when you create an account Personal Capital now warns you it is a US only service. Can’t even get started with Canadian accounts.

    • Bob Bickert
    • May 9, 2016
    Reply

    I enjoyed your article. I am semi retired. How is this software in terms of creating a budget, then tracking your spending compared to budget? Does it give you many expense categories? The budgeting software is most important to me. I have a good investment advisor but need something to pull all my investments together to compare income versus spending.

      • Jacob
      • May 13, 2016
      Reply

      Hi Bob, I find the software sufficient, but I’m not much into budgeting. Try it out and see if you like it.

    • Mark
    • April 29, 2016
    Reply

    One thing that drives me crazy with PC on the free side is the limitations of their retirement planner. While being able to adjust life expectancy, withdrawal rate and inflation rate is handy, the annual return bounded by a large standard deviation is an odd way to visualize things. To me, 8.9% annual return (what mine is currently-not sure if this is really tailored to my portfolio/investment position or not) is a bit too rosy given the financial climate of the past decade and looking ahead.

      • Jacob
      • April 30, 2016
      Reply

      Hi Mark, it’s a free product that they continue to improve. I try to keep that in mind.

    • pat nation
    • April 5, 2016
    Reply

    I love PC’s online platform.And like some of you,i’m also on a fence with their paid online financial advisory.I went ahead and moved some of my money to them this week and we’ll see how their performance add up.
    I did get the 3 month free sign up deal.If my portfolio don’t do well this year–then i might consider moving them out.

      • Jim Mount
      • May 14, 2016
      Reply

      Pat,
      When did you sign up for the 3 month trial, how much money did you have to move over?

      How is it working so far?

      Jim M. in Maine

      • Jacob
      • April 6, 2016
      Reply

      Keep us updated.

    • Bill
    • March 16, 2016
    Reply

    So, I signed up for their paid service this week. They offered me 3 months free (apparently this is offered if you deposit more than $250k). I moved a couple of accounts from Morgan Stanley where I was paying 1% and not happy with the performance (it was broker who my mother-in-law used and we decided to stay with him when she passed away since the money was already there and he had history with the family) so at least with PC I’m still paying less than I was if I stick with them after the fees kick in. We’ll see how it works out. We have a larger distribution coming from the estate in a few months (some real estate sold) so this way I will have an opportunity to see how I like them before having to decide what to do with the new money. I will say that I was impressed with the rep I’ve been dealing with.

    I moved some other money to Fidelity a couple of months ago and I’m doing the 3 index fund Boglehead approach there, so it will be interesting to compare them and see if PC actually does outperform as they claim that they do.

      • S Ahmad
      • May 14, 2016
      Reply

      How has it worked out. I’d like to know more about you’re experiences with the Boglehead vs PC. I’m thinking of doing to same thing but would prefer to have all the funds at one brokerage.

        • Bill
        • July 5, 2017
        Reply

        So, it’s been a year and I’m still with PC, but I’m also still with Fidelity. Some months one does better, other months the other. Didn’t compare 12 month total (I should). The PC account is certainly better managed tax-wise.

        I recently decided to retire earlier than I had expected (I’ll be 62 in November), and am working with my PC rep to determine how to handle the cash flow (where to take the money from) and my pension. He has someone who’s analyzing my pension options to see if it pays to take a partial lump sum buyout. I am also meeting with a Fidelity rep tomorrow (because of my assets there I have Private Client Group rep). It will be interesting to compare her to the PC guy. I think this could be where they shine since it will be nice to have someone guiding me thru all of this. I had not planned to need them for this service so early.

      • Jacob
      • March 21, 2016
      Reply

      Thanks Bill, please keep us updated on the service.

    • John
    • March 13, 2016
    Reply

    After using Quicken since 1995 and given the glitches at time and the potential sale of the company, I gave Personal Capital a try.

    What I liked….very easy to set up. Amazing how easy compared to Quicken. My Quicken will still cause connectivity issues sometimes with my bank. I was even able to set up easily manual accounts (notes receivables, misc. receivables, etc.)

    What I did not like…….you cannot create your own transactions. I read on the site, that splitting transactions was an issue. I use the checkbook in Quicken to project out for the next month, to know if I am going to payback on a home equity line or borrow, as well as purchase additional investments. There was no where for me to enter transactions. Also, I set up the reminders in Quicken and then I can easily project out for the next month.

    What am I going to do…..I am going to stick it out with Quicken. I am still using Quicken 2013. I am now getting notices that I have to upgrade to 2016 or I will not be able to link with my financial institutions. I will wait and see as Intuits upgrades are worthless. It is clear that Quicken lacks, but at least it does what I need it do and it is easy to use and serves the purpose I need it for (for now).

      • Sandra
      • May 22, 2017
      Reply

      I used Quicken until 2015 and got tired of the glitches. I also loved that I could create my own accounts, like a Petty Cash account to post cash transactions and link ATM withdraws. I can’t find any application that does that and it’s a drawback. I might need to get back into Quicken and deal with the issues they have sometimes. You might wonder why I stopped. I bought an iMac and didn’t want to spend the money on the software again. I’m still very undecided but your comments shed some light. Thank you, Sandra

    • Ann
    • March 13, 2016
    Reply

    Hi, Jacob:
    WOW am I feeling old, stodgy and suspicious! I am just not comfortable with exposing my entire financial life on a website. I have tried to keep my financial information on my own computer. Used MS Money, till they stopped supporting it. Then I got AceMoney, which I think is a dinosaur of a product. We just bought our first stocks and AceMoney really is not offering a satisfactory interface to manage the stock. I thought about getting Quicken but see that Intuit is about to sell it.
    So, I started searching for “Best personal finance software” and came across PC – a robust and FREE product. But, as they say, if the product is free then YOU are the product. I realize that PC makes its money by selling financial services but am skittish to know what exactly they might do with my financial information that I just upload to the site.
    Anything you can offer up to allay an old fogey’s concerns?

      • Jacob
      • March 13, 2016
      Reply

      Hi Ann,
      I understand your concerns. I don’t have any additional information to add. I’ve read about PC’s security and their promise to keep client information confidential, and I continue using the service while expecting them to honor their agreement. There aren’t ever any guarantees with online security, but there are many regulations and protections now in place that I trust will work.

    • Ted
    • March 5, 2016
    Reply

    Personal Capital does not work properly all the time. It loses connection with my stock accounts or brings in the wrong balances, perhaps because it doesn’t read the correct total balance or uses the wrong ticker symbols of the stocks or mutual funds.

    Just now, I reentered the account number and password of an account that could not connect today, although it did have the correct balance from yesterday. It took “forever” to connect and then it returned with 1) the wrong balance, 2) still yesterday’s date, 3) still the yellow circle with exclamation point that indicates that it cannot connect. I’ve contacted them, but they never fix it. Instead, they call periodically to sell me their services. I wouldn’t go to a doctor who is usually wrong, so why would I trust my life savings to an advisor who can’t show the right balances?

    • Sam
    • February 23, 2016
    Reply

    Thanks for the review, I have been using PC for a while now and love it for tracking savings and playing with hypothetical retirement goals. I am just starting down the road to early retirement and reading these sorts of blogs is really helping keeping the saving motivation up.

    You are right about the fees, I am looking into Betterment right now and they seem pretty good so I think I will go with them when I have go enough together to start investing.

    Just wanted to say thanks as this is the first time I have visited your blog.

    • MikeC
    • February 1, 2016
    Reply

    Has anyone that uses Personal Capital previously used Quicken? What features do you lose moving to Personal Capital?

    Can you pay bills through it (schedule payments that your bank will make)?

      • Dan
      • March 8, 2016
      Reply

      I have been using Quicken since 2002 and have somewhere in the 100s of thousands of transactions in my various account registers. I have never really used the budgeting features, but I heavily use the ability to track all my spending, determine where I was and what I was doing (based on spending), keep track of my assets and portfolios, etc. Although updating actual stock holdings has been unwieldy so I don’t use Quicken in that way other than for a single account.

      I started using Personal Capital (just testing it) a few days ago and it is a breeze to set up and appears to be far superior to Quicken as far as aggregating accounts from online sources, providing current balances, mobile app, etc. I like how the credit card and brokerage transactions are all “there” immediately (as opposed to downloaded and awaiting approval/categorization), but apparently they can be further categorized if I like.

    • PC_User
    • January 29, 2016
    Reply

    I recently signed up with PC and shortly after, I received a call to arrange a complimentary portfolio analysis. I got all my stuff together to prepare for it, but the phone call did not go further than “this is what we do, and if you’re interested in signing up for individual stocks and ETFs, give us a call back.” So disappointed, didn’t get my analysis done after all and the “advisor” couldn’t have seemed more disinterested.

      • Rick
      • November 18, 2016
      Reply

      I also received phone call for a complimentary analysis. After contacting them we had a preliminary call which discussed basics. We can schedule to follow which would have a detailed analysis including where we stand and we are personal Capital could help us. They did a really really good job laying out where we were deficient and where they could help us. But I too am on the fence because of the fee their office is only on the West Coast and we live on the east coast chances of us ever having a face-to-face are Slim. I don’t know why that matters to me but it does.

        • Ann
        • July 8, 2017
        Reply

        They did a face-to-face with me on the computer. They set up the whole thing and it worked great – good as being there

      • Jacob
      • January 30, 2016
      Reply

      I am sorry to hear about your disappointment, but what did you expect for a free consultation? They aren’t going to provide a financial plan and manage your assets for free. The app is the free product, the portfolio management is paid. Expecting anything else will probably result in more disappointment.

        • PC_User
        • January 30, 2016
        Reply

        Fair enough, but I wasn’t expecting them to manage my assets for free, that would be unrealistic and neither would I expect them too.

        I was only hoping to get what was more or less promised to me, an analysis (which their software already provides) which would include all of current accounts (it was having difficulty classifying the funds in one of my accounts). I didn’t ask or inquire or request, they specifically offered that up-front when they called me saying they had a way around it.

        If they’d said they wanted to convey an overview of the services they offer and what they do, that would have been fine, I’d have been happy to hear them out. But when they specifically stated they would “present [me] an analysis of current portfolio,” and not do so, that’s questionable. I’d rather not have spent my time putting things together for them when they couldn’t have cared less.

          • Bill
          • February 6, 2016
          Reply

          I just had a second call with a PC rep and I’m on the fence about signing up for their paid service. The first call was a “get to know you and find out about your service” discussion but the follow-up did analyze my current portfolio and point out where I had problems and what they would propose doing. Did the rep offer a second call or did you tell them that you just weren’t interested in their paid service?

          • Jacob
          • January 30, 2016
          Reply

          I understand the frustration, and that does seem a bit misleading. I’m just saying it’s probably best to expect very little for the price of free.

    • Laura
    • January 26, 2016
    Reply

    Hi,

    I am thinking of using PC – is this software for investments (401k’s – IRA’s – stocks, etc) only? Or can it be used to budget our household? I like the idea of being able to see everything in one place – as of now I log in to all my banks and credit card accounts which is time consuming and a hassle. I appreciate the article and your feedback – thanks so much!!

    ~Laura

      • Jacob
      • January 27, 2016
      Reply

      Hi Laura, it has a budgeting feature. Try it out and see if it works for you.

    • Scott
    • December 23, 2015
    Reply

    I have used their free service for just under a year and am very happy with it. It is the best of many similar services I tried at the same time through my bank, advisor, websites, etc. it seems everyone wants you to aggregate your info on their site now.
    I didn’t think their managed portion was worth the fee. I found it funny that they bashed actively managed mutual funds so much but that is effectively what they are creating for you only in the us equities portion. That fee is in line or lower than most actively managed mutual funds, but you are paying it on the full amount including the indexes and etfs that you could easily buy yourself.

    One thing I’ve seen others recommend with any of these internet advisors is give them a small amount to manage and just replicate it yourself on the remaining balances instead of paying the fee on the full balance.

    One other thing I want to point out is many of the comments here compare PCs performance to S&P but PC has a mix of asset types so you’d need a more detailed comparison than that. Something that took multiple indexes in the correct percentages into account.

    • John Reeher
    • November 4, 2015
    Reply

    I’ve used PC for a couple of years now and am very happy with it. I only use PC to create a complete snapshot of all my brokerage accounts. It is accurate and easy to use. Well until recently. I have 2 accounts through RWBaird that within the last couple of weeks won’t link. They changed the look of their website but all the login information is unchanged. Hope this can get corrected as Baird says they have no way to fix it and must be a PC issue.
    I’ve also tried Mint and didn’t find it to be as accurate + it never was able to link with RWBaird.
    And for those who are worried about being contacted to have PC manage the accounts, once I said I wasn’t interested, I’ve never been contacted again.

    • Zman In SC
    • August 31, 2015
    Reply

    I’ve used Personal Capital’s full services for 3 years and have had absolutely no problems, with the site, functionality or security. Currently they manage 4 accounts – 3 qualified (tax sheltered IRAs) and 1 non-qualified. Their performance has consistently negated the management fee.
    Tax-harvesting is a plus… Case in point; their investment strategy takes advantage of a position that is sliding “left” and at year end the offset against right-moving gainers keeps Uncle Sam’s cut lower than I could ever do on my own.
    Portfolio diversification is perhaps their strongest offering – their approach to Sectors and weighting takes the sting out of market fluctuations; even contractions such as those we just went though in August 2015. I’m quite certain having a well diversified portfolio is why the “correction” had a negligible impact on the qualified accounts and while the non-qualified account did flex down, it recovered to very near par just as fast.
    The Dashboard is a very handy tool as well. It lets me have a one-stop snapshot look at income, spending, investments, consumer credit and liquid assets on a single page and the option to take a closer look at each investment account and categorize income and expense. There are also some other “bells and whistles” for analyzing fees and doing investment checkups.
    Working with a knowledgeable adviser has its benefits as well. My portfolio is “my portfolio” not a cookie cutter product. It is a collaborative effort; with portfolio diversification positions proposed by a professional investment committee based on my individual timeline, risk vs. reward tolerance, income vs. expense and tax position.
    To close, perhaps the most important element of my relationship with Personal Capital and why I chose them is that at every level Personal Capital is committed to act in a fiduciary capacity regarding my portfolio. Seek out and read what Bill Harris has to say about fiduciary responsibility; he practices what he preaches. Our mutually agreed mantra is, “if I do well, Personal Capital does well”. It works for me…

      • Ron W.
      • January 5, 2016
      Reply

      I talked to PC, and the only things they might do more advantageously than Vanguard at less than half the cost is a bit more sector diversification and maybe a little extra tax loss harvesting (perhaps necessitated by investing in individual stocks vs funds and ETF’s). I couldn’t bring myself to believe the difference was worth it.

        • Jacob
        • January 8, 2016
        Reply

        You can get that and more at Betterment or Wealthfront for less than 0.25% annually.

      • socates74
      • September 21, 2015
      Reply

      Were you able to pick stocks and such, and was that all done for you by the investment committee?
      This is a first real positive review of their wealth management services that I have seen so far.

    • Mal
    • August 12, 2015
    Reply

    I signed up for PC yesterday based on all the reviews above. I have used Mint.com since 2010 with few complaints.

    Is there a way to make sure PC is a reputable company? A little concern: I just noticed I have been idle from the account for over an hour working on other things, and they still have me logged in. Do they have a “session time out” or “automatically log off after __ minutes”?

    The “transaction” features seem to be a little primitive still (i.e. inability to create new category or sub-categories” etc), so, I might keep it just for my investments as opposed to cash.

    • JY
    • July 30, 2015
    Reply

    Thank you Jacob – what a great review! And very timely too – I’m a long time Vanguard user and just started using the free PC web finance management tool, trying to decide between PC adviser and Vanguard PAS. Your review helps me a lot!

      • Jacob
      • July 30, 2015
      Reply

      You are most welcome JY.

    • Michelle
    • July 27, 2015
    Reply

    Hello,

    I fully admit to being a newbie at all this so please be patient with me. I used to use Quicken years ago for tracking my finances but when Intuit stopped supporting Mac users by keeping the software updated I moved to iBank. I hear complaints about iBanks investment tracking so I have not tried it. I am using them for basic personal financial software to be able to print reports showing my spending and categories to help with tax preparation. I do not read anywhere on the PC site or in your review if PC has the capacity to give us reports. I see it can pay bills and tracks our accounts so we can see up to the minute balances, etc. I am very frustrated with iBank’s support and that there are several issus that have not improved over the 3- 4 years I’ve been using it.

    Since you’ve used it for years, can you clarify if it is able to allow us to create reports that we can print?

    Also, as others have asked or mentioned, and again, I admit to not being that knowledgeable about the safety steps, but if we are typing in our account numbers and passwords, aren’t we giving them access to our accounts?

    Thank you for taking the time to share this information.
    Michelle

      • Jacob
      • July 29, 2015
      Reply

      I’m not sure what you mean by reports. Yes, you can specify any date range and it will show you all spending in categories. It’s free, so feel free to try it out.

        • Carol
        • January 19, 2016
        Reply

        I know exactly what Michelle means by reports. That is a primary feature I am looking for when switching from Quicken for Mac. I also have that question. I send Income/Expense reports to my Tax Preparer and I have always done this with Quicken –> they offer “Reports” as a way to prepare income and expense summaries for Tax Preparation. Does PC have a feature that prints out “Reports?”

        Thank you, in advance, for your answer.
        …carol k

  13. Pingback: How Much Money Do You Need to Save for Retirement? | Cash Cow Couple

  14. Reply

    Thank you for your comprehensive article. I am a longtime Mint user, but there are numerous things about Mint that I don’t love. I’ve been considering using Personal Capital for some time, but I’m concerned that I would be subjected to numerous sales pitches. My wife and I already work with a financial advisor with whom we’re pleased, and we have no interest in switching. Thanks for your experience.

      • Jacob
      • June 14, 2015
      Reply

      They will likely ask you once, but just tell them you have an advisor and that you aren’t interested. They will leave you alone. They quickly left us alone.

    • Juan
    • June 12, 2015
    Reply

    Thanks for the review Jacob. I love the app and the consolidation of all the accounts. Just like you I think 0.89% is way to steep for me. I’ m very happy with Betterment (0.25%) and Vanguard (0.18%). I know Wealthfront manages up to 15k for free and from there on it is 0.25%; however, if my Betterment account continues to grow (as planned) then it could come down to 0.15%. The other thing is Wealthfront requires a min balance of 5k to get started. Anyways going back to PC , I had my free consultation today and the question I asked is: if you can outperform a robo advisor, if things are normalized to fees, who’s the winner?, obviously they cannot answer this question, but what if in the end they perform slightly better but after they take a big chunk of your money the effective gain is not significant to cheaper alternatives? Again, no way to know but in the mean time I’ll take care if what I can certainly control which are the fees I decide to pay. As a side I have two questions for you: 1) what do you think about WiseBanyan?. Still skeptical about their business plan. 2) what do you think about Blooom and their 401k management service? Currently working with Financial Engines (0.51%) but have seriously been thinking about switching to Blooom.

      • Jacob
      • July 29, 2015
      Reply

      Hi Juan, Wealthfront only requires $500 to begin.
      And you are spot on, focus on keeping fees low. Any promise to outperform index funds is usually empty.

    • JD
    • May 31, 2015
    Reply

    I have a lot of historical transactions with Mint (> 6 years worth). Does anyone know if PC has some kind of import tool from Mint or csv files so I won’t lose info? I care most about not losing the performance track record and proper cost basis of my own actively managed (and market timed ;p) stock trading accounts – thousands of trades.

    • JPsDad
    • May 15, 2015
    Reply

    I have used Yodlee, which is the engine for many of these account agrigators, for many years. Do you know if this history can be brought into PC or any of the others?

      • Jacob
      • May 15, 2015
      Reply

      Sorry, I do not.

  15. Pingback: Milking the Cash Cow Couple for Money Savings Tips

  16. Pingback: What is Financial Freedom? | Cash Cow Couple

  17. Pingback: 401(k) for Dummies | Critical Financial

    • Jorge
    • April 7, 2015
    Reply

    I have been with PC for 9 months now, even moved some money to their wealth management services. When I moved the money, I told the advisor that I would try them for a year, and compare their performance to the performance of my other accounts. As of April, they were down .83% (about the cost of the fees for their “expertise”) while my other accounts were up 2.3%, 3% and 4.45% respectively. Their sales pitch was that they would try to hit many singles and doubles instead of just going for the HRs (using baseball analogy). So far they are losing to everybody, including the money under my mattress. I love their online app, but am seriously considering moving my money out of their wealth management services at the end of the year.

      • Theresa
      • November 29, 2015
      Reply

      I have been with PC for just 2 months and am not impressed with their performance, considering the recent bull market. That and the fact that my primary bank will not link, making the Transaction and Budgeting features worthless, will probably force me to move my funds elsewhere.

        • jmhays
        • May 20, 2016
        Reply

        Interesting. I have been with them for the past 6 months and they are outperforming my accounts at T. Rowe Price and Betterment. After reading a number of these blogs I was interested in performing my own test. I split my money between Betterment, Personal Capital and T. Rowe Price to see which would perform better for me (90% stock, 10% bonds). So far Personal Capital has done the best for me.

      • socrates
      • April 7, 2015
      Reply

      When I went through their portfolio review with my portfolio, they made it apparently clear that they can beat the s&p500 via smart indexing. Its ironic that in 2014 their returns lag the s&p500 significantly by double digits. I thought their stock picking and their smart indexing would at least match the standard benchmark that most if not all investors try to beat or at least match it.

      It will be interesting to see how they perform for 2015. Well, if you an indexer who invests in the s&p500 right now you are only up .85 ytd, according morningstar. On March 23 of this year the index was 10 points above where it started at on January 2 of this year.

      If you follow the dow index you are up only .29 ytd according to morningstar.

      Good Luck with PC wealth management.

  18. Pingback: How Much is "Enough" to Put Into my 401k Regularly? - Critical Financial | Critical Financial

  19. Reply

    I’m considering moving a portion of my Portfolio to PC. It would involve moving portions of both taxable and tax deferred accounts to PC, so that asset allocation can be managed accross the two types of accounts for best tax efficency. My main hesitation is exactly what you’ve mentioned above regarding the .89 fee, Vs. a Betterment type service or self managed through Vanguard (In fact I already have accounts with both Betterment & Vanguard, both great organizations) The main potential advantage I would hope to gain with adding a portion of the portfolio to Pers. Capital, is that since PC can take all current holdings into account, it is hopefully one more way to double check & ensure asset allocation across the portfolio remains balanced. (For example, if I was overweight Int’l Equities in my 401k – a service like Betterment would not recognize this and would still include their full Int’ l Equity recommendation in my Betterment portfolio…) by using PC my hope is that the service can recognize a situation like this and adjust the PC Portion of my portfolio accordingly. My hope is that having 50% of my portfolio self-managed (through employer 401k & Vanguard) 30% in a Betterment managed account, and 20% with PC, the PC portion could add an additional layer of assurance that asset allocation across the entire portfolio would remain in balance… but without having the FULL portfolio subject to a .89% fee. (Overall fee would average out to about = .09% across the entire portfolio using this approach) In essence its a mixture of both DIY & managed approaches, with PC serving as a double-check. I’d appreciate any thoughts, comments, or “second opinions” anyone has to offer. In an ideal world we’d all have just one single investment account, with just one single “time-frame” attached to it, and therefore self-managing asset allocation would be easy!!! In the real world however with multiple goals, time-frames, and accounts – it’s probably best to have some professional assistance to make sure everything is working together – I just don’t want to overpay for it! Thanks everyone

      • Theresa
      • November 29, 2015
      Reply

      In reference to your comment:
      “The main potential advantage I would hope to gain with adding a portion of the portfolio to Pers. Capital, is that since PC can take all current holdings into account, it is hopefully one more way to double check & ensure asset allocation across the portfolio remains balanced. (For example, if I was overweight Int’l Equities in my 401k – a service like Betterment would not recognize this and would still include their full Int’ l Equity recommendation in my Betterment portfolio…) by using PC my hope is that the service can recognize a situation like this and adjust the PC Portion of my portfolio accordingly. My hope is that having 50% of my portfolio self-managed (through employer 401k & Vanguard) 30% in a Betterment managed account, and 20% with PC, the PC portion could add an additional layer of assurance that asset allocation across the entire portfolio would remain in balance…”
      I just had this discussion with my advisor. PC does NOT adjust their portion of your portfolio to provide their suggested asset allocation across internal and external investments (as I had also hoped).

        • Chris Z
        • December 2, 2015
        Reply

        I am by nature a consistent but lazy investor. I put some work into making initial investments but pretty much just let them sit after. Since I’m over 50 and been doing this for over 20 years even the laws of chance have rewarded me with a tad under $1M invested. Since the majority of that rests in my current employer’s 401k I’m the only one that can choose how those assets are invested. Since retirement is actually looking like an option in the next few years I felt like it might be a good time to actually have some sort of plan.

        I had been using PC’s software to track assets and expenses (it convinced me to FINALLY stop using Quicken after 15 years) for 6 months or so and decided to listen to their pitch. I went ahead and consolidated a couple ex-employer 401k accounts giving them about 35% of my portfolio to manage. While it is true that they cannot automatically rebalance my current employer’s 401k my advisor was more than happy to take a look at the options available to me and recommend available investments that worked to keep the overall portfolio in line with their high level allocation model that most closely aligned with my situation (mostly just time horizon and risk tolerance).

        It’s been a year since I pulled the trigger and I have to say that so far I’m happy (not ecstatic) about the decision. I speak to my adviser every 60 days or so and have discussed topics ranging from refinance loans to pension strategies and while there seems like a tendency for the advice to be “get your hands on the cash and put it into your portfolio” there is always math to back up the advise.

        As far as portfolio performance goes with all the volatility it seems like a good year to use as a benchmark. YTD (this is 12/02/15) my total portfolio is about .25% behind the S&P (I know without that management fee I’d be even) but I’ve been ahead more often than behind during the year and the reduced volatility has been way easier to live with….

        I’m keeping an open mind and I’m not sure if I’ll stay with them (especially when all of my assets are available for them to manage) but they sure have made it easy and relieved me of my “lazy investor” guilt.

          • Willy
          • August 17, 2016
          Reply

          So you’re 50 years old, and your entire portfolio is only .25% behind the S&P? That seems like amazing performance to me, if the information I’m considering is accurate. Your portfolio at that age would include a decent amount of bond exposure, no? If you have bonds mixed in with equities, and you’re only trailing the S&P by a small amount and that index is 100% equities, doesn’t that mean you’re crushing it?

      • Jacob
      • March 22, 2015
      Reply

      I wouldn’t pay the extra fee for that feature, but I understand your concerns. While Betterment cannot see outside accounts, you can manually tweak your asset allocation in each of your accounts as you see fit. That seems like an easy way to set your desire allocation, no?
      The most efficient portfolio structure will probably have your 401k allocation filled with any bond funds for the sake of tax efficiency, with your taxable accounts holding stock ETFs. Having index ETFs in taxable accounts is ideal because they produce almost no capital gains, and only dividends will be taxed annually at the preferential capital gains rate. Furthermore, you can utilize tax-loss harvesting features in those taxable accounts if you hold them at Betterment/Wealthfront.
      So I suppose if in your situation, I’d manually do what I’ve just suggested, and keep your accounts as simplified as possible – perhaps 401k, Vanguard, Betterment only.

    • Brian
    • March 11, 2015
    Reply

    Thank you for your comprehensive article. I am a longtime Mint user, but there are numerous things about Mint that I don’t love. I’ve been considering using Personal Capital for some time, but I’m concerned that I would be subjected to numerous sales pitches. My wife and I already work with a financial advisor with whom we’re pleased, and we have no interest in switching. So, if I use the free Personal Capital site/apps to track our accounts, to what extent should I expect I’ll have to fend off sales pitches for investment advice?

      • Larry Fransson
      • March 18, 2015
      Reply

      I have just gone through the sales pitch, and am seriously considering putting my investments under their management. I received an initial call from someone to schedule another call with the advisor who was assigned to my account. They’re trying to sell you on their service for sure, but it’s not a high pressure sales pitch. I suspect that if you told them the first time that you’re not interested, that they wouldn’t bother you after that. I started off thinking that there was no way they would sell me on their service, but I have become convinced that it might be worth it to me.

        • clive
        • May 12, 2015
        Reply

        I’m at the same point Larry – did you take the plunge?

          • Tyrion
          • May 27, 2015
          Reply

          @clive: I signed up for PC a couple of days ago. Will try them for a few months and see how it goes

      • Jacob
      • March 12, 2015
      Reply

      Brian, you are welcome.
      I’m a target customer of theirs for investment advice as well. I received maybe one email and several phone calls, but I’ll admit I never answered. They left me alone in a few weeks time. So my experience wasn’t bad. I probably should have just said I’m not interested after one call, but I was often at work or busy when they called, so I never bothered.

  20. Pingback: Is a Budget Necessary for Financial Success? | Cash Cow Couple

    • Joel
    • January 24, 2015
    Reply

    I recently had the pitch from Personal Capital. I know very little about investing and have long just invested in low cost index funds. When I was first starting out with my 401k in ’08, I took a big hit and lost a lot, but stayed the course and have done well over time. Lately I’ve been thinking that I need to do something different though. My first thoughts were about timing the market, but I’ve read enough to know that isn’t going to work. The PC advisor I spoke with told me that because I’m buying index funds that I am more weighted toward certain sectors like tech and health. Diversification makes a lot of sense to me, and I like some of the alternatives that they offer such as real estate. After reading some of the reviews and articles on your site though I am leaning toward moving my money to Betterment, or just consolidating the rest of it at Vanguard and using their VPAS service. It seems like Betterment doesn’t have some of the same alternatives (I think real estate specifically was mentioned in the review on this site). On the other hand VPAS doesn’t offer auto rebalancing or any of the other nifty hands-off features that something like Betterment does. Since I’m not really doing anything right now, having their advice would probably help me to at least be more diversified, but I wish I could find more info about VPAS to make a better informed choice.

      • Jacob
      • February 11, 2015
      Reply

      Joel, if you are mainly looking for sound wealth management services, I think you are looking in the right direction toward Betterment, Wealthfront, Vanguard.
      I’m a big fan of tax loss harvesting offered by the robo-advisors, but keep in mind that applies to taxable accounts only.

      • AJD
      • February 4, 2015
      Reply

      I switched from Mint to Personal Capital after enjoying the comprehensive dashboards for all of my investment accounts. Although there is no budget function, I keep this in my own Excel file and really like the cash flow section of Personal Capital.

        • Mal
        • August 11, 2015
        Reply

        Were you able to transfer all of your information from Mint, history? I also like the budget feature, is there not one in PC? Which do you prefer? Mint or PC?

  21. Pingback: Wealthfront Review: Automated, Low-Cost Investing | Cash Cow Couple

  22. Pingback: Starting a Blog and Making Money | Cash Cow Couple

    • Larry
    • January 11, 2015
    Reply

    Jacob, I have been using PC for a few months but, was disappointed in that it does not support American Century Investments Individual and Retirement Accounts unless they are entered manually. I have been using Mint for quite a few years and it works but, seems slow and always locking up etc., Nice but, needs some work in that regards. All of our accounts are available on Mint which is a Plus! At any rate I did a search today for Reviews on PC and your info came up. I agree with everything you have said and like you I am hesitant to turn over the funds and pay the fee for them to manage our funds. They have approached us and I have their review set for tomorrow so was pleasantly surprised to find your review. I hope at this time perhaps they have lowered their fees but, my guess is they have not. At any rate I love the site other than the American Century Issue which I have notified them twice on. The PC rep is involved now too. I suspect some mutual funds companies are fearful of investors transferring to PC is why they haven’t linked to them. If Vanguard is linked I may switch to them as I have been considering that due to their lower fees. I had an account with them quite a few years back and was happy with them. Thanks for the excellent review! Larry

      • Theresa
      • November 29, 2015
      Reply

      My husband and I both have American Century IRAs that come across fine! However, my primary bank will not link so PC’s Transaction and Budgeting features are worthless to me. I’ve been using them for 2 months and have not been thrilled with my returns, especially considering overall market gains. I may not stay long.

      • Jacob
      • January 21, 2015
      Reply

      Thanks for reading and weighing in Larry. And you can definitely link your Vanguard accounts to Personal Capital. All mine are linked!

    • Kay
    • January 6, 2015
    Reply

    Hello,
    I agree the free website tool is very useful. To see everything together is great. This is also the first time I have clearly understood, by using PC, how many fees I am being charged by mutual funds. However I am hesitant to go to the next step, which is to have PC manage the money because it requires me to move investments to Pershing, a sub of BNY Mellon. You cannot leave your assets where they are. In order to receive paid management by Personal Capital you move your funds. Of course they are still yours and SPIC insured. But its important to understand how this works.
    I know nothing about Pershing and BNY Mellon so have to investigate.

      • Bill
      • February 6, 2016
      Reply

      I don’t think you should be concerned about moving to Pershing. It’s probably safer than some of the other services because they act as a 3rd party, they’re not holding the money. As you say, you own the account . There are good reasons to be concerned about signing up with PC (like fees and performance), but I don’t think that moving the money is one of them.

    • Sid
    • January 1, 2015
    Reply

    I just completed the move of a substantial portion of our retirement assets to our new Personal Capital account. I’ve successfully managed our assets for many years, but as my wife and I get older I need to have a backup plan. I know that if I die, there will be plenty of local brokers and financial advisors who will come around to talk to my wife. Most of our friends already use the services of local advisors, some of whom charge quite substantial fees.
    I hate to pay a fee for financial advice. I also hate to pay the expressed and hidden fees inherent in mutual funds. But I can’t, through my own efforts, achieve the adequate diversity within and across asset classes that is necessary to control risk. At my age, I need less risk; and my current investment approach (10-15 large cap stocks, MLPs and REITS with a history of increasing dividends) will not hold up through the next couple of inevitable broad market collapses.
    Personal Capital gives me a reasonable compromise. I will pay a predictable annual fee of 0.85% (very low, considering). I will absorb the hidden fees associated with a few ETF and mutual fund positions. In return I will have substantially less risk because PC is investing our money in a remarkably lengthy list of stocks, bonds, ETFs, funds and even gold. I couldn’t do those investments on my own. I couldn’t even afford the Schwab $8.95 transaction fee that I would pay for each of the 100+ purchases that PC has made for my account. (Note that I do not pay additional fees to PC for stock or fund transactions: PC absorbs these costs into it’s 0.87% annual fee.) Those who think that 0.87% is “too much” need to look closer at the actual costs of their mutual fund or financial advisor services.
    Anyone who pays PC to invest their money has to be comfortable with the assumptions that markets are rational over time and that diversity reduces risk. Those who trust their intuition or the intuition of the smart guy down the street to make their investment decisions shouldn’t send their money to PC. I don’t have that trust, and I base my opinion on the simple fact that the majority of professional, full-time, smart mutual fund money managers can’t beat the SP500 year after year. My intuition is no better than theirs.
    So we’ll see how it all works out. I don’t expect PC to make us rich, just to invest well enough to grow our nest egg while keeping it as safe as we could expect from a firm that has “fiduciary responsibility”. I will wait to move the rest of our retirement money to PC until I am comfortable with their services.

      • Jayson
      • January 21, 2015
      Reply

      Be careful with the “fiduciary responsibility” part, because you can go other firms and pay only .37% instead of the high .89 with PC. If PC was truly a fiduciary they would be charging a reasonable fee for their service. In my opinion their fee is way too high for what they do. You also have to factor in their investment performance on their website is nothing to write home to mom about and it doesn’t even beat the sp500 index but lags it big time. If you research advisors fee over the last twenty years they have not changed one bit. Yet with all of the technological increases and productivity increases they have not gotten cheaper.

        • Jacob
        • January 21, 2015
        Reply

        I’m not going to argue that you can find lower fees elsewhere (including lower than the 0.37% you mention), but that doesn’t mean they don’t act as a fiduciary. Reasonable is entirely in the eye of the beholder, and there are firms at every imaginable price point in this industry.

          • Jayson
          • January 21, 2015
          Reply

          Jacob,

          If fees are reasonable to the investor then why all the talk about fees? If fees don’t matter, why are so many investors, like yourself using Vanguard?

          I’m not saying that they are not acting as a fiduciary, but in terms of acting in the best interest of their client, their fees should be competitive.

          When I think of a fiduciary I think in terms of the whole picture not just what the RIA does for the client, but also the fees he or she charges. The investor never thinks about the fees he or she is paying in a raging bull market, but when the market is down and is in a bear market everyone talks fees.

            • Jacob
            • January 22, 2015

            I said in my review, I choose not to use their wealth management service because the fees are too high for me. In the comment above, I said that it’s up to the individual investor to decide what a “fair” fee is. Clearly Sid thought it was fair, and so be it.
            Your comment above clearly hinted that they they aren’t a fiduciary because they charge higher fees than other firms. That’s completely misguided. Their fees are competitive in the industry, and many large RIA’s charge more.

    • Matt
    • December 18, 2014
    Reply

    Thanks for this helpful review. A colleague recommended the free aspect of the website and the comments on this page helped me to know what to expect during the sales pitch for the management services. Here are my observations in case they may be of use to others:

    By way of background, we are 38 and have ~$450k portfolio, with roughly $200k in Roth IRAs and the rest in employer accounts with TIAA, TSP, and Vanguard. As things stand with employer matches about $80k will go into those accounts each year and the Roths will become a shrinking slice of the pie. PC said they can’t really access and manage those employer accounts but could give me advice about allocations. I didn’t pin them down if they would charge their fee on just the money they handle or the entire portfolio. Their pitch was that we would benefit from their “tactical allocation” and rebalancing.

    Asset Allocation: Thanks to PC’s wonderful allocation tool, I now know we are 43% US stock, 19% international stock, 11% real estate, 6% foreign bonds, and 21% US bonds (including G fund and TIAA traditional). During the pitch they said our allocation should be something like 50% US stock, 25% international, 11% alternatives (real estate, gold, commodities, energy), and 14% bonds. By “leveraging their in house technology” they claimed to have data that this would provide a superior risk adjusted return. It felt a bit aggressive compared to what I thought I had communicated as my risk tolerance.

    Portfolio construction: As others mentioned above, they make you feel like owning mutual funds is the dumbest thing ever and didn’t take into account that the TSP funds are cheaper than any ETF and many of the Vanguard ones are so close that it’s not worth discussing. They favor equal weighting across sectors as a way to avoid bubbles and claim that it is impossible to achieve this along with careful weighting of small, mid, and large caps with regular ETFs. I’m not sure that is entirely true. They also claimed they could replicate indexes of several hundred companies by owning just 60-70 stocks without individual business risk. That may or may not be true but I don’t understand why you wouldn’t just own the index via a fund or ETF.

    Rebalancing: They gave the standard line that it boosts returns by selling high and buying low. They stressed that they weren’t handcuffed by a calendar and would rebalance when appropriate. I asked if there were certain threshold triggers when the asset allocation got away from goal and they were a bit cagey. They said that was part of it but also that they have a team of people watching the markets to help guide those decisions.

    This leads me to my biggest issue with the pitch. I can buy the idea of taking indexing to the next level by customizing (equal weighting or whatever). Maybe they were tailoring things to my investing attitudes, but they stressed that no one can predict the future and the key is having a plan and the discipline to stick to it. Then they contradict themselves by comments like “we’re watching the markets,” which smacked of MARKET TIMING to me. You can’t bash mutual fund managers trying to actively beat the market and then turn around and say you add value by having your team keep an eagle eye on what is happening in the markets.

    In the end it didn’t seem worth it to pay close to 1% for their services, especially when they can’t directly handle employer accounts and I don’t have taxable accounts they could employ harvesting, etc.

      • Justin
      • January 4, 2015
      Reply

      Hi Matt. PC calculates their fee on total funds under their management. Fees are not charged on funds held at outside institutions but linked to your PC Dashboard. I have been using PC for 24 months and am very happy with their services.

        • Danny
        • July 13, 2017
        Reply

        What happens if you give them 200k and your portfolio dives? Do you lose your two personal advisors?

      • Angela
      • January 2, 2015
      Reply

      Matt, I would love to have heard their answer to your challenge that they sounded like Market Timers. I’m very new to rebalancing and tax harvesting…but I wonder if that’s why it’s good to keep a close eye. Rebalancing and tax harvesting may be at play. What do you think Jacob?

      • Jacob
      • December 18, 2014
      Reply

      Excellent input, thank you Matt!

    • John
    • December 3, 2014
    Reply

    Is possible to have your investments managed by Betterment, but be able to see those investments in my Personal Capital free account?

      • Rite
      • December 20, 2014
      Reply

      Yes, they support betterment. I just registered and imported my betterment account.

      • Jacob
      • December 4, 2014
      Reply

      John, this is an excellent question. I am under the impression that Personal Capital does currently support Betterment linking on the interface. I could be wrong if something has very recently changed.

        • Joan
        • December 14, 2014
        Reply

        Hi there,

        I use the free functionality of Personal Capital for investment tracking since it picks up where Mint leaves off. I am considering starting up a Betterment account, but based on this string, I went to Personal Capital, and it looks like Personal Capital can link with Betterment now, so that’s definitely a plus.

    • Richard
    • November 16, 2014
    Reply

    Thanks for the great info Jacob! I am considering using Personal Capital’s advisory services and am looking for comments from others. Your site has the best info and the most comments from readers.

    I have always managed our investments and handing them off to an outsider is a huge step for me. I am not sure I am ready. OTOH, I realize there is a lot of stuff I don’t know. PC’s approach and fee structure seems very reasonable.

    Thanks again.

      • Jacob
      • November 16, 2014
      Reply

      Richard, thank you for taking the time to read and comment. I haven’t used the advisory services but have heard mostly good things. You might also read my Betterment review if the robo-advisor movement interests you.

    • Ron
    • October 21, 2014
    Reply

    It’s interesting that some commenters say that PC uses only ETF’s and others say they use individual stocks as well. Either they do a lot of customization or something is odd here.

      • Sid
      • April 7, 2015
      Reply

      In my account with PC there are about a hundred positions: stocks, bonds, and ETFs. The stock positions are generally very small, in some cases only a few shares. I pay no transaction fees for the stocks and bonds, but I do pay for the ETF positions. There is some churning of positions, but since I don’t pay any transaction cost for that, I am not concerned.
      The objective is to achieve a very broad diversity with risk appropriate to the client’s choice without the costs of a mutual fund. I continue to manage a large amount of our retirement $, mostly with positions in 15 large cap stocks.
      PC has done better than I have to date, by a percent. The big question is whether PC does a better job of protecting wealth during a correction or bear market. I’m sure we’ll get the chance to see that soon enough.
      If I’m happy with the details after a year, I plan to move more of those funds to PC.
      So far, so good, for me.

        • Bill
        • February 6, 2016
        Reply

        Sid.. this site doesn’t say when your comment was written (it’s 2/6/16 now), but what (if anything) have they done during the recent market downturn?

        Glad to hear you are happy with their services. I am debating whether to sign up for their paid services. I just moved money out of TIAA-CREF (where I was paying 0.8%+mutual fund fees) to Fidelity, where I invested in index funds using the Boglehead approach (and I got lucky and was out of the market for the first 2 weeks of 2016 during the liquidation and transfer!). Clearly going to PC is opposite everything that they stand for so I figure I would move some other money there and try them out for now.

      • Richard
      • November 16, 2014
      Reply

      For what I have learned they use ETF’s AND individual stocks. And you do not pay transaction fees when they buy an sell on your behalf.

  23. Pingback: Financial Carnival for Young Adults

    • Cody Wheeler
    • June 6, 2014
    Reply

    Thanks for the review. I’ve been looking for a site exactly like this. I’ve found Mint to be pretty limiting when it comes to the investing and asset growth side of things, although it’s still good for tracking spending, which does come in handy. I’m going to give it a shot.

    PS: Great site as well. I hope we can connect.

    • Tim F
    • May 31, 2014
    Reply

    I have been using Personal Capital for about a year — it’s a fantastic tool. I don’t use their advisory services yet and still spend >1% on traditional advisors.

    Couple of comments. First, i found it linked to all my accounts very easily. As of now, it brings together two money center banks, my 401k, IRA, investment accounts, stock option accounts (my employer), four credit cards, and one of my two mortgages. It even taps into my financial advisors’ system! Coupled with manual entries re home values, etc. it gives me an instantly updated view of my net worth.

    Perhaps the biggest benefit is that it showed me the fees I was paying to my 401k advisor so I immediately switched my company’s administrator to Vangard.

    Bottom line — I recommend it to everyone and it’s free.

    • socrates
    • May 24, 2014
    Reply

    The app is pretty cool, I’ve been using it now for a couple of weeks. I like the fact that I can look at all my accounts in one place. I only wish it showed the cost basis on the investments I have.

    I find the portfolio checkup tool to be very interesting, but its not useful to me. The information presented seems to do more to advertise their professional management services than really help.

  24. Pingback: The Ultimate Tax Guide To Maximize Investment Returns

    • Fermata
    • May 2, 2014
    Reply

    Excellent review – comprehensive, complete, thoughtful. I signed up for PC about a month ago. Other than an occasional glitch with their account updates, it’s been working fine. The account link procedure was very simple. And the updates work better than Mint, plus the website design is clearer and easier to understand. True, they don’t offer the budgeting features Mint has but I use something separate for that anyway.

    I took the bait on the money management services, meaning I’ve sat through two short (20 minutes) presentations and then agreed to their longer (1 hour) pitch, which I had today. They’re quite professional. As the rep explained, she’s the sales person. The investment teams (about 30 people now) work behind the scenes, and they are guided by the 3 principles in the company.

    Here’s the short version of the way I’d summarize their approach – active management using passive instruments. They only use passive ETF’s (indexes), individual equities, and for their bond holdings they use short term high quality corporate capital implemented in corporate bond ETF’s + treasuries of different sorts, and a smattering of international bond holdings. They are VERY WISE not to be invested in long term bond products, especially bond mutual funds. I say it’s active because they do rebalance based on certain market signals, though that info is proprietary. They use an underlying financial software engine called MyVest, tweaked with their own customizations. Bottom line is that yes, they rebalance, of course, but not on a time-based schedule. They rebalance based on market conditions as well.

    You are absolutely right about the expense ratios, very low. I suppose the only place I’d differ a little with you is the overall advisory fee, in my case .87%. Every other money management service I look at wants at least 1.1, usually more like 1.25, and I don’t get from them that their strategies are necessarily as well formulated as PC’s.

    I’ve been very conservative for 3 years now, and I just entered retirement. I don’t want to take foolish chances, but I need to start putting some cash to work. I’m looking at their 50/50 portfolio. Of course only they know what’s in it until I turn over the $$. I’m considering giving them half of what I have, see how they do, then make a decision about the other 50% next year. What I really dislike most is the fact you have to move your money to Pershing. But they take care of the details for you and so hopefully it’s pretty painless. I think they even pay your brokerage surrender fees, and if you ever leave PC, getting your money back into your brokerage, ie Pershing’s surrender fees, are taken care of by PC.

    Finally — good, good, good for you and your wife for focusing on your financial lives early, and for valuing what it means to save and to live within your means. It took me a long time to learn, and I could be a lot wealthier now, but at least I’m looking at a reasonable retirement, and I’m living proof that it’s never too late to start saving and investing.

    Thanks….

      • Jacob
      • May 7, 2014
      Reply

      Fermata, such an excellent comment. Thank you for detailing your experience for others to see. I hope you’ll stick around and share updates as well.
      I don’t necessarily think 0.87% is bad, but there is downward pressure. You should also consider Betterment and Wealthfront. I wrote a few reviews on here that details their service, and I’ve been impressed overall. I’ve not tried the others, but I’m just wanting to let you know about other low cost portfolio management services out there right now.
      Finally, great closing note and a great reminder that it’s never too late for change. Enjoy your retirement!

  25. Pingback: Carnival of Financial Planning

  26. Pingback: 11 Top Free Budgeting Tools for your Personal Finance

    • Aakash
    • March 24, 2014
    Reply

    Great review. I’ve signed up for free accounts with Future Advisor and Jemstep as well and have found Personal Capital to be superior particularly with regards to the number of accounts/brokerages they allow automatic tracking for, their graphics/visuals, and their detailed portfolio tracking. Another big advantage worth highlighting is their breakdown of what your asset allocation is. I haven’t been able to find such a detailed and accurate breakdown through any other service or website and certainly wouldn’t be able calculate and keep track of it myself with the same accuracy.

  27. Pingback: Common Sense Millennial

    • Erik
    • March 9, 2014
    Reply

    I have tracked Fidelity 401k, self managed brokerage accounts and 529 with Personal Capital for over a year with no issues.

    • Marc Pilotte
    • February 22, 2014
    Reply

    Great review Jacob. I have been using mint for a few years now but have continually had problems with a couple accounts updating properly. Based on your review, I believe its time for me to try Personal Capital. Nice job on the review. Marc

      • Jacob
      • February 22, 2014
      Reply

      Thanks Marc! I think you’ll like it. Please let me know how it all goes.

    • Alberto
    • February 11, 2014
    Reply

    Unfortunately at this time they do not operate outside of the US, however if you live in the US now you’ll be able to keep the account if you relocate abroad in the future (I am referring to the assent management part of their services, the aggregation software only works for US based institutions)

      • Jacob
      • February 12, 2014
      Reply

      Thanks for sharing Alberto. Good info.

    • Bill
    • February 4, 2014
    Reply

    Great review Jacob.
    I signed up a couple weeks ago with PC and really like it so far. Had my financial consultation and considering letting them manage my money. The website is easy to use and functional.. and the advisor I have been speaking with is very professional and helpful…so far so good..

      • Jacob
      • February 4, 2014
      Reply

      Thanks Bill, and thank you for stopping by to share your experience! Keep us all updated please.

  28. Pingback: 6 Ways to Save More Money Today | Suburban Finance

  29. Pingback: 3 Must Do’s for the New Year | Living Rich Cheaply

    • Robert ILC
    • January 9, 2014
    Reply

    I really like Personal Capital’s UI. It is clean and easy to use. Much better than mint.com. I also agree that the way it presents information about assets etc is very valuable.

  30. Pingback: Cash Cow Couple - Personal Finance Blogger Showcase

  31. Pingback: Keep Investing Simple-5 Tips for Success | Eyes on the Dollar

    • Jake
    • October 14, 2013
    Reply

    Does anyone have any success stories from Personal Capital’s financial advisers?

      • Jacki
      • October 16, 2013
      Reply

      We signed up for the financial advisor in July and have really enjoyed watching the stocks that they’ve chosen. It was a little difficult getting everything set up (just lots of paperwork), but overall we have really liked it!

        • Jacob
        • October 16, 2013
        Reply

        Hi Jacki! Super glad to hear about your positive experience with Personal Capital. Do you know how your portfolio has performed verse it’s most comparable index?

          • Jacki
          • October 17, 2013
          Reply

          So far, our portfolio is down 0.13% and the S&P 500 Index Return (for the same time period starting in July) is up 0.16%. So with the very little time we’ve been signed up, we’re not “beating the market”, but it’s definitely interesting to see what they’re doing. We have about 80 different stocks and then a few low cost ETFs. A few of our stocks have done extremely well and one just tanked. It’s definitely better and more interesting than what I would do on my own!

            • Krys
            • March 3, 2017

            I just signed up to use the PC advisers at the end of the 2016. I had various accounts ranging from pension to retirement to money market hanging out, there is such a benefit to having it all in one place and being able to invest proportionately (as apposed to mutual funds where you really have to dig to get an idea where anything is causing a lot of duplicate investing) and the transparency is second to none. Directly owning each individual stock (costco, cocacola, disney etc) and knowing how many shares you have in each and how that works into your portfolio as a whole is satisfying to see on their dashboard. I work contracts and have to switch companies at times and will open up 401ks with each new company if offered so its nice to be able to move it over into one spot when all is said and done. Originally, I had my a lot of my holdings in Raymond James and was NOT happy with them (hardly made any gains on investments in my 20s). PC is more hands on, I feel comfortable asking questions and not a good ol’ boys club like I felt with RJ. I will second Jackie, it was definitely some paperwork and there were a few glitches (check lost in the mail etc) in getting everything over initially, only now come February is everything fairly well set. They did give in an extra month fee free (4 total) due to this, which I appreciated. When I look at the holding trends compared to market trends it won’t be accurate for a while but when I look the performance tag it will be more accurate.

            Overall, this will be a good learning tool for me, no background in finance here and am a self learner, I am in my young 30s (a saver by nature) and am interested in learning the market but I still feel I need some support and people to contact, PC seemed to be the best fit (no brainer) for me at this point in my life. I am hoping to eventually be able to move over to a company with less fees once I feel confident investing. But I think their 0.89% is reasonable compared to the costs at RJ and the hidden mutual fund fees I did not realize I was paying. I’ll keep you posted.

  32. Pingback: Internet Affiliate Marketing Motif Investing Review – A Better Way to Pick Stocks - Internet Affiliate Marketing

  33. Pingback: Motif Investing Review - A Better Way to Pick Stocks

  34. Pingback: Hosting the Carnival of Retirement • Cash Cow Couple

  35. Pingback: Carnival of Financial Independence, 23rd edition

    • MD
    • July 31, 2013
    Reply

    Jacob and Vanessa,

    I just love your blog and am a regular reader. I even signed up for the airvoice wireless service by following the link from your website all the way to making the transaction, hoping that you get a small share out of it as encouragement and appreciation for lots of good things you guys post on your blog.

    I read the “Betterment” review that you posted a while ago and now I read the Personal Capital review. While I understand that the 2 products are slightly different wherein Betterment can do automatic asset allocation based on percentages you specify into ETFs and this one only consolidates your accounts and gives a dashboard view but you allocate the assets yourself, are there some specific level playing comparisons where you would rate one product higher than the other?

      • Jacob
      • July 31, 2013
      Reply

      Thanks, MD. We really appreciate the support. I don’t make anything from Airvoice, or many of the other links on the site, but your encouragement is well taken.
      Betterment is purely an asset management company. The only reason to sign up for Betterment is if you want them to manage your investments for you. They don’t offer any free services, but their asset management fees are significantly lower than Personal Capital.
      Personal Capital, on the other hand, offers a free service, which simply consolidates your accounts and provides information about your spending and investing. They do offer OPTIONAL asset management services, but the fees are higher as I showed in the review. I just use the free account.
      Does that make more sense?

        • MD
        • August 3, 2013
        Reply

        Got it, thanks for the nice clarification.

          • Jacob
          • August 3, 2013
          Reply

          No problem!

 

Leave a Comment