ISAs and Multiple accounts

(James Storer) #1

Hey there fellow Freetraders :wave:. As we move towards offering multiple investment accounts–GIAs & ISAs–we want to make sure that they are simple and intuitive to use. Whilst I feel I have a reasonable understanding of how this should work, I’m interested to get the community’s feedback around a multiple account experience.

The two routes, we’re discussing are having completely separate accounts, with individual totals, earnings, activity and banking. This essentially would be like operating a different app for each account as you’d only see the total for one account at a time, and the transactions that occur within it. And banking would be separate also, meaning you’d have a different reference for depositing into each account.

The other would be to have a “total portfolio” view showing an aggregated total and earnings of all accounts. You’d still be able to drill down into a specific account to view it on an individual level, but the default view would be “all accounts”. This route means that your activity would be shared so you’d see a feed of all transactions, and banking would be more of a global function, where you’d deposit centrally and move funds to a specified account (aka your ISA, which could be automated).

I’m keen to hear your thoughts. And for those of you who are signed up to be early testers, there’ll be some opportunity in the next month to participate in user research around this and other areas of usability.

  • Separate account view
  • Total portfolio view

0 voters

(Vladislav Kozub) #2

Separate app idea makes it inconvenient and potentially confusing for non-engaging users that start using the app (Like Barclays with their confusing Pingit app).

As long as a single application will have a clear interface where everyone could easily distinguish whether they are buying into ISA or GIA, it is a batter way to go in theory (subjective here).

(Chris) #3

If you click hide results you can change your vote.

(Vladislav Kozub) #4

Found it, thanks!

(James Storer) #5

Just to be clear here, it wouldn’t actually be a separate application, but more like switching modes so the information you’d see would only relate to a single account at a time.

(Calum McWhir) #6

My two cents: separate account view on the basis that I would have a different rationale and time horizon for the investments in each account. It feels more relevant to me to know that £Xk is in the ISA, £Xk is in the GIA, £Xk is in the SIPP at a granular level because I have different expectations of where they should be at. If the predominant view is that I see them as one I lose snapshot awareness of how each is doing. In the extreme, one performing really well might distract me from one underperforming because my net position remains the same.

I prefer to see aggregation of my finances only when it includes the whole universe, including cash, maybe a bit of crypto and perhaps liabilities like student loan.

That’s not to say I wouldn’t like universal activity feeds though, maybe there’s a hybrid option?

Clearly this won’t appeal to all and I’m much more in favour of doing what we decide is best for the core demographic of Freetrade, but great to open up the debate to the community!

banking would be more of a global function, where you’d deposit centrally and move funds to a specified account

Good to mention here that if funds are withdrawn from an ISA they still contribute to the allowance for that year, so it’s best to plan carefully when depositing into it. I imagine we’ll have a ‘are you sure you want to withdraw from your ISA?’ trigger on this basis.


+1 having a hybrid option. I think have a ‘total portfolio’ but then have some way to show the transactions and performance for the specific account. Technically I would have thought it’s just an extra scope on the query.

Banking probably should be central, out of interest will you support multiple funding sources?

(James Storer) #8

Absolutely, you would still be able to drill down into each account and view the total, earnings and holdings in that account.

(Kenny Grant) #9

Total portfolio view is what people will expect I think, then with the ability to drill down into individual accounts for more detail. I’d expect to start at a home which shows me all the accounts with some summary info for each, and then to select an account to see more detail on holdings and perform actions etc. I don’t like the idea of a modal switch, it feels clunky usually, like extra accounts were bolted on after the UI was decided on. I’ve never seen that done well.

The majority of users will probably have:

  • GIA (since this is free, most will start there)
  • ISA (going to be very popular)

Many of your account holders will end up with something like:

  • GIA
  • ISA
  • SIPP

They’re not going to want to flip between those and do mental arithmatic just to find their total net worth in savings (many nowadays save into ISAs as well as pensions for long term saving). This is one of the things the HL app does quite well.

To me for savings, transactions are a secondary function, the main info is total value, growth against targets and money added this year (particularly for ISAs). A general feed of transactions would do no harm as a screen under accounts, but I’d be more interested in a portfolio view which showed numbers for all accounts and growth for all accounts (perhaps against targets). I’d expect something like:

  • Home (summary of each account + overall totals)
  • Home > Account (summary of value and holdings)
  • Home > Account > Transactions (list of transactions, inc. fees)
  • Home > Account > Pending (list of pending limit orders etc)

Freetrade is Out :fire: Share your first thoughts once you get access!

When you say “like operating a different app” you don’t mean I literally have two apps on my phone? (I’m guessing I know the answer but just want to confirm)

(Vladislav Kozub) #11

@Stephen, please see the response from James:


Aha thanks, missed that bit.


I’ve voted for separate - agree that it might be a little inconvenient but I’d rather see my tax free account separate from my taxable account, rather than all lumped in together.

(Rob N) #14

I’d prefer a consolidated view out of the 2 options especially if there was anything built on top to analyse the portfolio(s). (I.e. one might appear under diversified without the other).

But at a later date it would be good if you could tick which accounts you’d like to combine as each user may want a different view (or want to view this differently at a different times of the year like at tax year end). I’d view GIA & ISA combined but then would view a SIPP seperately.

(Vladislav Kozub) #15

@JamesStorer, just an idea for consideration below:

Log in screen at the start, entire holding amount (ISA, SIPP, GIA combined) shown at the top and all securities listed beneath without filters by account type.

Then you can open individual account types (there are two in the example, one of which only contains $20 of value which was purchased for the sake of this example) and buy securities in an appropriate account of your choice for avoidance of confusion - quite intuitive. As you can see, I only buy stuff in the right account type.

When you enter each section (e.g. ISA or GIA), you also have stats that are limited to that account type section (only their returns/losses, only their list of securities), but if you are on a Home screen, you will have the overarching value of your holding.

To digest easily, let’s assume the left is GIA and right is ISA in the gif above (currency will be Russian Ruble). GIA only has a value of ₽1,266 and ISA is ₽773,093. Each of those will show the user what shares they contain (when I open ISA, the shares listed below do not seem to change at all compared to the home page. This is because all of them [except one which is down the list] are located within that ISA account). If you are on a home screen, those will add up and represent your overarching capital, which is ₽774,336 in the example.

Incredibly intuitive UI in my opinion. I thought it might be a good food for thought.

(Alex Sherwood) #16