Vanguard is Discontinuing their VanguardAdvantage Accounts

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bhwabeck3533
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Vanguard is Discontinuing their VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by bhwabeck3533 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:30 am

I was disappointed to get a notice today that Vanguard is discontinuing their VanguardAdvantage Account. The "press release" provides guidance to transition, and there is no replacement product being offered.

It's new info, but I'm looking for a recommended alternative when my account goes away on 7/31/2019.

Nala
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Nala » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:39 am

Everyone who has an Advantage account should write and protest. This is a major inconvenience in two ways. First, establishing bill paying at another institution requires inputing large amounts of information for each bill to be paid times the number of bills. For me, that's probably around 30 different payees.

Second, it means having to transfer money on a frequent basis from my Vanguard money market account to the other institution.

What I find most galling is Vanguard's claim that “we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.”

What a pile of BS. Why not just tell us the truth about why you’re discontinuing this service—whatever that might be. To say that it is not meeting clients’ needs is ridiculous. It is certainly meeting my needs and the needs of everyone else who uses it.

As long as I have to establish bill paying services elsewhere, I’ll be looking for another institution that can offer me the FULL range of services I had become accustomed to with Vanguard. At some other institutions, I can invest in the same Vanguard funds at no additional cost.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:43 am

Don't most places receiving payments have some kind of auto payment available? Although about 20 payments are done automatically for me, zero are pushed from my home base. I guess it's why I've never seen value in "bill pay" services.
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by bhwabeck3533 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:45 am

You echo my every sentiment. I sent a note already to my Vanguard advisor predicting a huge backlash by current users/clients of the Advantage account. Up til now I have been a devoted and loyal disciple of Vanguard.

Please provide names of investment firms you are considering as options. I'm pissed off.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by arf30 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:49 am

Schwab and Fidelity are good alternatives, all their accounts have routing numbers, checks, bill pay, debit, ATM etc for free. I won't get into the pros/cons of each since those have been beaten to death in other threads here.
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by galawdawg » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:51 am

Can you post a link to the notice or perhaps summarize it? As of this morning, there is no press release about this in the Vanguard Pressroom (https://pressroom.vanguard.com/#/) and I don't see anything when I log into my VanguardAdvantage account. Also, the links to upgrade to VanguardAdvantage and associated forms are still active on the Vanguard website.
Last edited by galawdawg on Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:53 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by RobertD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:52 am

I haven't received the notice yet for my VanguardAdvantage account. I will be equally frustrated as having bill payment out of an account that sweeps to the Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund is the most convenient way to earn that money market yield on monthly cash flow items as long as you have flagship status and then there are no monthly fees for VanguardAdvantage. It even integrates well to Quicken.

With all of the Vanguard site access problems lately including during open market hours, if I have to move my bill pay setups elsewhere I'll likely migrate the bulk of my holdings. Might as well pickup one of the current decent incentive payments to move at the same time. Once I get the notice I'll inform my rep of this plan to see if it can help convince them not to discontinue VanguardAdvantage.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by HomeStretch » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:53 am

Without a VanguardAdvantage account, is there a direct way to move funds via ACH between a Vanguard brokerage account and a Fidelity CMA?

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by gowest » Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:59 am

I am so mad about this. I just got the same email. No warning ahead of time, etc.

I *JUST* finished setting up this account a couple of weeks ago. Switched everything from Ally, changed my direct deposit, changed all of my ACH transactions, set up checkwriting, got my ATM cards, etc., etc.

And now they're canceling it. Thanks a lot, Vanguard.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by bhwabeck3533 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:00 am

As requested, official Vanguard language.....
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Vanguard homepage Flagship Services®
Important information about your VanguardAdvantage account
We are writing to let you know that after careful consideration, we have decided to discontinue the VanguardAdvantage® account on July 31, 2019.

Why the change?
At Vanguard, we are always evaluating the services we offer to ensure they meet our clients' needs. Following a recent review, which included feedback from a broad spectrum of clients who use the service, we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.

We realize that discontinuing VanguardAdvantage will require you to establish similar services, such as bill pay, with your bank. We sincerely regret this inconvenience. This notification is intended to provide you with as much lead time as possible to make the necessary changes.

What do you need to do?
Although VanguardAdvantage will be available until July 31, 2019, we encourage you to begin the transition process now. By starting now, you will allow sufficient time to establish alternative arrangements with your bank as well as ensure that withdrawals can clear from your account before the checkwriting, bill pay, and debit card features of VanguardAdvantage are discontinued.

For details on the transition, read the frequently asked questions.

Making the most of your Vanguard money market account
While we will no longer provide the services associated with the VanguardAdvantage account, your cash remains invested in your Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund yielding 2.32%* (as of February 12, 2019), well above the national average for savings accounts.** Once bill pay has been established with your bank, consider connecting your Vanguard money market fund to your bank account. Moving money between the two can then be completed quickly and easily. This will allow you to make the most of your cash—combining the yield on Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund with the convenience of your bank's bill pay service.

Questions?
We understand that you may have questions, and we are ready to help. Call us at 800-345-1344 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Eastern time.

We appreciate your understanding regarding this decision. Thank you for being part of the Vanguard community of investors.

Sincerely,

James Delaplane

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by ruhigste » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:01 am

I was unaware of the Advantage Plan. I am using an automatic monthly transfer from a Vanguard IRA to my regular checking account at my Bank. It works well enough. Neither Vanguard nor my bank are charging fees for the service.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Snapper » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:05 am

Apparently they do not see the need to offer full service. I want a simple solution for DW in the event of my demise. I was planning to close out my Fidelity accounts but will now think again. The Advantage Account was not the best as you had the ATM fees to contend with, but it worked. Decent index funds are available in many places these days. Fidelity seems to be going in the opposite direction as Vanguard.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by galawdawg » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:15 am

bhwabeck3533 wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:00 am
As requested, official Vanguard language.....
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

....
Thanks for posting that. I've reached out to my Flagship rep to register my displeasure as well. Like a previous poster, I recently spent significant time converting to VanguardAdvantage, and setting up deposits and bill pay (and just received my VanguardAdvantage checks and debit card this week). While I spent time ending all of my future bill pay transactions in my regular checking account, thankfully I had not closed that account yet.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by jeff1949 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:22 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:43 am
Don't most places receiving payments have some kind of auto payment available? Although about 20 payments are done automatically for me, zero are pushed from my home base. I guess it's why I've never seen value in "bill pay" services.
That's what I do for all my monthly bills. Auto payments to my credit card (that rebates me 3.33%) and then I have only one bill to pay each month.......the credit card bill. To pay that takes a few clicks. Sure works beautifully for me.

The only thing that I found that bill pay came in handy for was my quarterly IRS payments and state income taxes as they don't accept credit cards without a hefty fee involved.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by indexfundfan » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:23 am

Are they any options available to pull from or push money into the Vanguard brokerage account using a third party bank?
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by gowest » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:34 am

I called Vanguard and provided my feedback/criticisms. Now I need a new solution. Any suggestions?

I would like a checking account with ACH transactions where I can earn a competitive rate on the cash sitting there (>2%).

My regular checking account does not work because the money there earns nothing. And I don't want to have to transfer money into that account just to pay bills as soon as that money clears. Too much hassle.

My online savings account (Ally) does not work because there are monthly limits on withdrawals, and I'd exceed that. For example, I'd want to be able to withdraw money to pay mortgage, extra principal payments on mortgage, several credit cards (that we run our expenses through in order to earn cash back), and periodically make other payments (529 plans, I bonds, etc.).

The VanguardAdvantage account was a perfect fit. Are there suitable replacements out there?

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by indexfundfan » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:41 am

gowest wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:34 am
I called Vanguard and provided my feedback/criticisms. Now I need a new solution. Any suggestions?

I would like a checking account with ACH transactions where I can earn a competitive rate on the cash sitting there (>2%).

My regular checking account does not work because the money there earns nothing. And I don't want to have to transfer money into that account just to pay bills as soon as that money clears. Too much hassle.

My online savings account (Ally) does not work because there are monthly limits on withdrawals, and I'd exceed that. For example, I'd want to be able to withdraw money to pay mortgage, extra principal payments on mortgage, several credit cards (that we run our expenses through in order to earn cash back), and periodically make other payments (529 plans, I bonds, etc.).

The VanguardAdvantage account was a perfect fit. Are there suitable replacements out there?
Fidelity CMA is a possible alternative. You can use their MMFs, e.g. FZDXX currently is 2.41% (requires $100k to start but you don't have to maintain that amount after purchase). The MMFs are automatically liquidated to satisfy ACH debits. The caveat is that you need to manually buy the MMF since it is not a sweep for the CMA.

For a more complicated setup, you can also add a Fidelity brokerage account which allows a MMF as a sweep.

See this discussion viewtopic.php?t=266538
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by UpperNwGuy » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:44 am

It's been a busy month for Vanguard: lowering the ERs on ETFs without lowering the ERs on the associated Admiral shares, discontinuing Vanguard Advantage, and promoting 13 "Select ETFs" as the best way to start investing. What will be next? Moving to a market cap distribution between domestic and international on the Life Strategy and Target Date Retirement funds? Gradually closing mutual funds and forcing all new investments into ETFs?

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by MnD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:46 am

Clearly Vanguard does not want to be a one-stop destination for customers assets, income and spending even for high-asset level customers.
Between this and the move to lower ER's for ETF's than admiral shares, one has to wonder if Vanguard would prefer to just provide and manage mutual funds and ETF's and have the customer accounts, transactions and support go elsewhere.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Glamdring56 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:48 am

I am a Flagship Select customer who just transferred all of my banking auto payments to VanguardAdvantage. With net interest rates finally rising to tolerable levels and banks refusing to raise deposit rates I was delighted to finally do so. It was the ONLY perk from being a Flagship Select customer that was of the slightest value to me.

I continue to be distressed by the lack of services available at vanguard in the wealth management field. This is a signal that they continue to value middle market customers more than the wealthier ones. I will have to begin the search for a better home for my needs.

Vanguard, the last 40 years have been great but and you have all my thanks for helping me grow wealthy. Why have you let me outgrow you? I must vote with my feet and I am sad it must come to this.
Last edited by Glamdring56 on Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Nala » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:49 am

To those who say they they have their bills automatically paid, two responses: First, not all bills can be automatically paid by charging to credit card or by bank draft. Second, I like to review my bills before they get paid. Ever hear of incorrect charges?

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Jags4186 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:50 am

MnD wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:46 am
Clearly Vanguard does not want to be a one-stop destination for customers assets, income and spending even for high-asset level customers.
Between this and the move to lower ER's for ETF's than admiral shares, one has to wonder if Vanguard would prefer to just provide and manage mutual funds and ETF's and have the customer accounts, transactions and support go elsewhere.
That would be a great way to lower their costs even more.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by midareff » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:51 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:43 am
Don't most places receiving payments have some kind of auto payment available? Although about 20 payments are done automatically for me, zero are pushed from my home base. I guess it's why I've never seen value in "bill pay" services.
+1 "auto-pay in full baby".

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Dandy » Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:55 am

Disappointed but can't say I'm shocked -- Vanguard not only didn't promote it it seemed to actively hide it. I established the Advantage Account many years ago but never transitioned to making it my workhorse checking account but was getting tempted as rates rose.

From the outside I think they are making a mistake long term. They have been great at gathering assets but this account was geared to keep assets by creating a substitute for most banking options and by creating a lot of inertia because of the work involved in setting up bill pay. Also, being a repository for RMDs to keep the dollars inhouse.

Of course, they would have had to spend some money bringing the Advantage Account up to date to compete with competitors and market it.

Do any of the VG taxable money markets (Federal, Prime or Treasury) have the ability to add checkwriting? I believe Prime used to offer it for checks over a certain amount e.g. $100? I like to have checkwriting ability at any firm where I have money.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by indexfundfan » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:00 pm

Dandy wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:55 am
Do any of the VG taxable money markets (Federal, Prime or Treasury) have the ability to add checkwriting? I believe Prime used to offer it for checks over a certain amount e.g. $100? I like to have checkwriting ability at any firm where I have money.
Vanguard used to offer these for MMFs and bond funds in the old "mutual fund" accounts (minimum $250).

After the switch to "brokerage" accounts, I believe Vanguard only offers checks drawn on the settlement fund.
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Parthenon » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:12 pm

Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:39 am
What I find most galling is Vanguard's claim that “we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.”
That must be why, several years ago, Vanguard quit offering free Turbotax to it's flagship clients. It no longer met the range of needs articulated by their clients.

Ed :annoyed
"What am I gonna do if I run out of money?"

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by jeff1949 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:16 pm

indexfundfan wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:00 pm
Dandy wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:55 am
Do any of the VG taxable money markets (Federal, Prime or Treasury) have the ability to add checkwriting? I believe Prime used to offer it for checks over a certain amount e.g. $100? I like to have checkwriting ability at any firm where I have money.
Vanguard used to offer these for MMFs and bond funds in the old "mutual fund" accounts (minimum $250).

After the switch to "brokerage" accounts, I believe Vanguard only offers checks drawn on the settlement fund.
I just opened a Treasury MMF in January and got my checks about 2 weeks later. Maybe that is because I have resisted switching to a brokerage account?
Last edited by jeff1949 on Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by SC Anteater » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:17 pm

Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:49 am
To those who say they they have their bills automatically paid, two responses: First, not all bills can be automatically paid by charging to credit card or by bank draft. Second, I like to review my bills before they get paid. Ever hear of incorrect charges?
I still review the bills even though they're auto-paid. You get the statement before the payment goes out. If there's an issue you can stop the pay.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by MnD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:30 pm

Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:49 am
First, not all bills can be automatically paid by charging to credit card or by bank draft. Second, I like to review my bills before they get paid. Ever hear of incorrect charges?
Increasingly few. Credit cards is our default. Bank draft is down to the power company that surcharges for CC's and paying the CC's. Paper checks are down to "her haircut" and the occasional independent home contractor that doesn't take cards. I review all our bills/charges before they get auto-paid in full on the CC due date. I haven't seen an incorrect charge in many years - maybe decades. Haven't had a use for push-type "bill pay" service ever. Computers are much more accurate and reliable than humans for routine rule-based things.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by MnD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:36 pm

Dandy wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:55 am
Of course, they would have had to spend some money bringing the Advantage Account up to date to compete with competitors and market it.
And lower the minimum balances to zero like their competitors versus the current sub-par offering reserved for high-rollers.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by sport » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:37 pm

indexfundfan wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:00 pm
Dandy wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:55 am
Do any of the VG taxable money markets (Federal, Prime or Treasury) have the ability to add checkwriting? I believe Prime used to offer it for checks over a certain amount e.g. $100? I like to have checkwriting ability at any firm where I have money.
Vanguard used to offer these for MMFs and bond funds in the old "mutual fund" accounts (minimum $250).

After the switch to "brokerage" accounts, I believe Vanguard only offers checks drawn on the settlement fund.
Vanguard still has checks on the MM funds for the "old style" mutual fund accounts. I use them for making QCDs. The minimum is still $250.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by sleepysurf » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:40 pm

Hah! I also JUST transitioned to VanguardAdvantage, and spent yesterday evening setting up all my BillPay accounts, and deleting them at Bank of America. Not happy! :(

I agree they seem to be driving away their higher net worth clients. I even transferred my DAF from Vanguard to Fidelity last year, as the Fidelity plan allows grants as little as $50.
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:45 pm

I considered a VanguartdAdvantage account some time ago, but the account would have introduced yet another entity into my life. PNC bank was used, IIRC, but you weren't really a client of PNC, so if you needed face to face banking, something local, you had to have a bank or credit union account anyway. So, bottom line I lost interest in the service.

The VanguartdAdvantage account offered some banking services, but still fell short of some typical services a bank would supply. In short, I would not have been able to reduce the number of accounts, instead I would have yet another account to maintain.

I'm sure those using the service are upset, but a long lead time has been provided.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by beyou » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:55 pm

Personally I believe one should use best of breed, not one stop shopping.
Vanguard has great funds, lousy service.
Banking is strictly a service oriented business, why go to a firm known for bad service ?
The extra interest vs a checking account wont make a difference in my life, but good banking services will.
Given they only had fee free ATM withdrawals at PNC bank, this was an inferior banking provider for many years now.
I assume many of the users live near PNC branches, but that is a tiny minority of Vanguard customers.

I find ACH and wire to/from Vanguard works very well and have no need for Vang Advantage.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by sleepysurf » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:57 pm

Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:45 pm
... PNC bank was used...
I wonder if PNC was raising the fees they charged Vanguard to use their Checking and BillPay platform, and Vanguard decided just to "can" the whole program. If we all make enough fuss, perhaps they'll reconsider and/or look to partner with a different banking partner.
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Wiggums » Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:58 pm

Parthenon wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:12 pm
Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:39 am
What I find most galling is Vanguard's claim that “we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.”
That must be why, several years ago, Vanguard quit offering free Turbotax to it's flagship clients. It no longer met the range of needs articulated by their clients.

Ed :annoyed
That was likely the result of a change on the Intuit side since T. Rowe Price and Fidelity stopped having the deals at the same time.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Wiggums » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:08 pm

beyou wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:55 pm
Personally I believe one should use best of breed, not one stop shopping.
I agree with you. I have a document of how things are setup at each brokerage house in case I have to shuffle things around. I also like to experience the UI And know how things work.

I never heard of this service at Vanguard before and I’ve been with them forever.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by apex84 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:10 pm

I used VanguardAdvantage because I want to push payments to payees from my account. I don't want our bill vendors having access to automatically withdraw funds from our account. To keep this arrangement, I'll have to switch to our bank account (which we still have but rarely use).

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by HueyLD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:12 pm

Wiggums wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:58 pm
Parthenon wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:12 pm
Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:39 am
What I find most galling is Vanguard's claim that “we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.”
That must be why, several years ago, Vanguard quit offering free Turbotax to it's flagship clients. It no longer met the range of needs articulated by their clients.

Ed :annoyed
That was likely the result of a change on the Intuit side since T. Rowe Price and Fidelity stopped having the deals at the same time.
Not true. Fido has continued to offer complimentary TurboTax Premier for some of its customers.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by HueyLD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:17 pm

My professional guess is that VG Advantage account as a product is a loss leader and their analyses show that the cost far exceeds the benefits.

And my own personal preference is to do banking with real banks and investing with real brokerages. Companies tend to do a better job when their core business is involved.

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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by stan1 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:19 pm

People want full service including a designated call center rep along with zero fees and no monetization of personal data. Maybe there's an opportunity for someone to start such a business? Would be curious to see the business plan leading to profitability.

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GoldStar
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by GoldStar » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:20 pm

HueyLD wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:12 pm
Wiggums wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:58 pm
Parthenon wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:12 pm
Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:39 am
What I find most galling is Vanguard's claim that “we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.”
That must be why, several years ago, Vanguard quit offering free Turbotax to it's flagship clients. It no longer met the range of needs articulated by their clients.

Ed :annoyed
That was likely the result of a change on the Intuit side since T. Rowe Price and Fidelity stopped having the deals at the same time.
Not true. Fido has continued to offer complimentary TurboTax Premier for some of its customers.
It's "no longer meeting the range of needs" because the vast majority of clients don't use it. To continue to pay for and upkeep a system that only a small minority of clients use isn't cost effective. There are many alternatives:
- Auto-Bill-Pay each item (Pull versus Push)
- Nearly any bank in the world (Small regional banks and Credit Unions are generally free)
- Or, if you really want an all-in-one, start moving to Fidelity. Zero ERs and full Banking / Cash Management features.

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Wiggums
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Wiggums » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:21 pm

HueyLD wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:12 pm
Wiggums wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:58 pm
Parthenon wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:12 pm
Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 10:39 am
What I find most galling is Vanguard's claim that “we have determined that VanguardAdvantage is no longer meeting the range of needs articulated by our clients.”
That must be why, several years ago, Vanguard quit offering free Turbotax to it's flagship clients. It no longer met the range of needs articulated by their clients.

Ed :annoyed
That was likely the result of a change on the Intuit side since T. Rowe Price and Fidelity stopped having the deals at the same time.
Not true. Fido has continued to offer complimentary TurboTax Premier for some of its customers.
That’s good to know. I only have 600k at Fido and maybe you must be in a higher tier.

Lastrun
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by Lastrun » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:23 pm

MnD wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:46 am
Clearly Vanguard does not want to be a one-stop destination for customers assets, income and spending even for high-asset level customers.
Between this and the move to lower ER's for ETF's than admiral shares, one has to wonder if Vanguard would prefer to just provide and manage mutual funds and ETF's and have the customer accounts, transactions and support go elsewhere.
Bingo and +1

In the long run, if one has simple portfolio, does not need PAS, and can get the basic VG ETFs elsewhere, I am not sure of the need to have the "brokerage account" at VG.

All I can think of is the risk of upsell by the other for-profit firms.

elgob
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by elgob » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:25 pm

beyou wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:55 pm
I find ACH and wire to/from Vanguard works very well and have no need for Vang Advantage.
How do you do ACH from Vanguard, apart from a VanguardAdvantage account (which uses the TBNY Mellon bank routing and account #)?

smectym
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by smectym » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:25 pm

I too recently set up Vanguard Advantage. Fortunately, hadn’t yet set up the bill pay.
I’ve been following all these threads about poor and unpredictable Vanguard service and I do find it concerning. We’re also experiencing our own ongoing problems. Don’t want to overreact (and the business decision to discontinue Advantage is not a big deal in itself) but at some point you can’t just shrug off “poor service“ as something entirely unrelated to the safety of ones assets.

Spouse has been angry with Vanguard since they unaccountably botched an IRA transfer. She wants us to leave; Fidelity the likely destination. I’ve been dragging my feet but now I’m starting to think more seriously about it.

Smectym

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RickBoglehead
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by RickBoglehead » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:25 pm

I inquired last year about Vanguard Advantage and my Flagship rep suggested I look elsewhere. In addition to not having state of the art capabilities, he said that there were a very small handful, in fact less than 5, people who supported it. Glad I got that guidance.
Nala wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:49 am
To those who say they they have their bills automatically paid, two responses: First, not all bills can be automatically paid by charging to credit card or by bank draft. Second, I like to review my bills before they get paid. Ever hear of incorrect charges?
I guess I am perplexed at this. I have some bills that I can pay via credit card, and some that I have to pay via my checking account. Each company I do business with sends me an email that my bill is ready. When I feel like it, I log on and download it, and review it. I then note it in Quicken, either in my checking account (Ally) or on my credit card.

In all cases there are no issues with reviewing them. If I have an issue, I have plenty of time to contact the company and ask about it. If I don't like their answer, I can log in and turn off the automatic draft/credit card hit.

I can't imagine entrusting the receipt of my bills to a third party with them then making payment, I want to review the bills myself.

The number of people using this non-promoted product was very small.
elgob wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:25 pm
beyou wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 12:55 pm
I find ACH and wire to/from Vanguard works very well and have no need for Vang Advantage.
How do you do ACH from Vanguard, apart from a VanguardAdvantage account (which uses the TBNY Mellon bank routing and account #)?
You log in and send money to your bank. Gets there the next day (if it's in a fund like Prime Money Market, takes one extra day). Do you mean something other than ACH?
Last edited by RickBoglehead on Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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GoldStar
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by GoldStar » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:26 pm

stan1 wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:19 pm
People want full service including a designated call center rep along with zero fees and no monetization of personal data. Maybe there's an opportunity for someone to start such a business? Would be curious to see the business plan leading to profitability.
The key is to balance out the zero fees and call center with some supposed value-added managed funds that others are willing to pay for. The managed funds support the business and the free Cash Management / Banking features and ZERO expense ratio funds serve as loss leaders. Customers are allowed to use only the loss leaders. Business Plan? Copy Fidelity since this is what they are already doing.
Last edited by GoldStar on Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MnD
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by MnD » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:26 pm

HueyLD wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:17 pm
My professional guess is that VG Advantage account as a product is a loss leader and their analyses show that the cost far exceeds the benefits.

And my own personal preference is to do banking with real banks and investing with real brokerages. Companies tend to do a better job when their core business is involved.
Schwab owns a real bank integrated with brokerage and Fidelity seems to be doing well with their cash management account offering - which is probably best in class on the basis of reviews here. Neither of my kids would even consider separating banking and brokerage services having "grown up" with integrated products from pretty much day 1 that meet all their needs. Nor would any "high-roller" minimum asset requirement fly with the younger set.

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heartwood
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Re: Discontinuing VanguardAdvantage Accounts

Post by heartwood » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:28 pm

I just spoke to Flagship, perhaps some of this is mentioned above. Direct deposits set up via Vanguard with unique routing and account numbers is unaffected. Any EFT debits/credits set up via the Advantage Account routing numbers needs to be changed to an outside institution. Mortgage, credit card statements, insurances,etc.

You can do checkwriting against the Federal MM account in brokerage, but only for >$250, only using paper checks.

I was told they'reworking on a "new improved better option" but it's in the future. Been there with them when they discontinued mobile check deposit in switching to brokerage accounts. It took 2 yrs to get it back.

This is my main checking account for 15+ yrs. I run everything through it. I have more than 100 payees and a bunch of monthly EFT pulls. All will have to be re-entered somewhere else. Weeks of works for me.

I've just been assigned a multi-week homework project to transfer all to someplace else and then perhaps move money accordingly each month.

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