My review of freetrade - updated

Hi everyone,
As my first post on medium I decided to review freetrade (I’ve been a member for a while but new to the community here).

Let me know your thoughts - totally open to feedback!

Thanks

The review seems pretty fair. Just FYI you’ve left the # of VUSA shares you hold in a screenshot, making hiding the price a bit redundant.

Nice catch! Fixed that :slight_smile:

Sadly once you start doing UAT you never stop doing UAT

3 Likes

The costs are a little misleading: everyone (including Trading 212 customers) will pay the 0.5% stamp duty and the ETF charges - the article reads as if only Freetrade customers pay such fees, yet these are charged by the government and the ETF companies respectively and in the latter case, the charges are wrapped into the share price of the ETF.

7 Likes

Hey! Welcome to the community.

This might provide some explanation.

You can type the title of the article in Google to bypass the FT’s paywall

Also plenty of additional info can be found by searching this community forum.

On a side note, also check out the costs charged by the industry leader - HL. Hopefully, you don’t get a heart attack :sweat_smile:

3 Likes

It’s a trade off and down to investor’s personal preferences. Ive always thought, and correct me if anything I say is wrong, that the difference between the two platforms is that freetrade have tried to develop their backend first (stuff that investors don’t see) and Trade 212 focused on providing new features (which investors do see).

There isn’t anything wrong with this, but Freetrade worked on Invest by Freetrade before introducing new features and I personally think it makes them more reliable. If anything goes wrong, Freetrade would be able to fix any problems in their system faster and easier as it is theirs.

I think T212 use a third party, which there isn’t anything wrong with. But when I was considering using them (for general investing and their pie feature), I wondered what would happen if interactive investors had a major problem with their system. I also remembered reading a story about the problems that Robinhood had in the US with their systems. They had great features, but their system couldn’t cope with extra stress and this (alongside other reasons) put me off using T212.

7 Likes

Thanks for all the feedback! I updated the review.

That’s interesting perspective, about them owning their own tech! I’ve been using Freetrade about a year as it was the first app I’d heard of that brought to the UK what RobinHood was doing in the USA - trading without those very expensive fees. I’ve been really enjoying it!

That said I’ve been using it long enough now that I realised I should have tried out the alternatives sooner, for comparison. I tried 212 myself for the first time this week, spent £20-£30 on a few UK and US shares to see the difference in costs and interface, if any.

I’ll be honest, at first I was a bit dismayed at how much I love the features in 212 that I can’t seem to find in Freetrade, like the detailed stats for stocks, the ability to buy shares either by investment amount or shares purchased, the ‘max’ graph that goes back further in time it seems.

And I hear there are lots of stocks in 212 that aren’t in Freetrade but I honestly didn’t explore enough to see if there’s anything I want that I can’t get in FT.

Plenty that I don’t understand enough to play with too, like the more complex buy/sell orders that I understand you have to pay for with Freetrade. So I don’t think I’m missing out by not paying for Plus, I just buy stocks and keep them long term really, I’m nowhere near experienced enough to get any cleverer than that!

Realistically, though, I guess I don’t really see a huge practical difference between the two. And I like Freetrade’s brand, the ‘feel’ of their app, the fact they own their own tech, and I understand that they are still growing.

I would really love to have those detailed stats, though.

3 Likes