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Written by Sam Pennington on December 5, 2023
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How To Transfer Assets From Betterment To Vanguard 2023

When it comes to managing investments, investors may decide to transfer their assets from one platform to another for various reasons.

If you're considering moving your investments from Betterment to Vanguard, the process may seem daunting at first, but with careful guidance, it can be a smooth transition.

In this article, we'll outline a step-by-step guide, detailing how to transfer assets from Betterment to Vanguard.

Transfer Options

The initial step involves deciding how you want to transfer your investments.

Betterment offers two primary options: liquidating the entire portfolio or initiating an in-kind transfer to another taxable account at a different firm.

While liquidating might seem like the easiest option, it potentially incurs capital gains taxes.

Opting for an in-kind transfer helps avoid immediate tax implications.

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  1. Betterment allows investing in fractional shares, but these won't be transferred. Consider liquidating remaining funds or holding onto them at Betterment.
  2. Vanguard will receive the cost basis within 15 days of the transfer's completion.
  3. Betterment charges a $75 flat fee for each outbound transfer.

How To Transfer

Once you've decided on an in-kind transfer, the process at Vanguard involves the following steps.

  1. Start Online: Navigate to Vanguard's website and go to Investing > Rollover & Transfers > Account Transfer > Start your transfer online.
  2. Required Documents: Gather the necessary documents specified by Vanguard to complete the transfer.
  3. Select Account Details: Provide information about the brokerage firm, type of account (taxable individual), account number, value, and specify if you're transferring the entire portfolio.
  4. Choose Investments: Select the type of investments, such as ETFs, being transferred.
  5. Receiving Account: Indicate the receiving account at Vanguard, either an existing one or create a new brokerage account.
  6. Review and E-Sign: After reviewing the details, electronically sign and submit the transfer request. Vanguard will email you the necessary forms.
  7. Review and Send to Vanguard: Print and review the forms, attach your last statement from Betterment, and send them to Vanguard via mail.
  8. Send Copy to Betterment: Similarly, send a copy of the forms and your last Betterment statement to Betterment.
  9. Wait for Processing: Patiently wait for the funds to appear in your Vanguard account, a process that typically takes up to 4 to 6 weeks.
  10. Request Cost Basis: Finally, request the cost basis from Betterment and send it to Vanguard.
Article written by Sam Pennington
Sam is a personal finance writer. While in college, he dedicated his spare time to learning about personal finance, investing, and real estate. Sam currently works as a business analyst for one of the top food manufacturers in the world.

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