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Ellevest Review

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1 Minute Review

Billing itself as the 1st investing platform & money membership for women, by women, Ellevest takes a uniquely female approach to investing. The robo-advising platform takes into account wage gaps, saving discrepancies and women’s longer lifespans when calculating an ideal portfolio mix. After completing a quick questionnaire, Ellevest will create a portfolio ratio customized to your needs. The company’s primary investments are in low-cost stock and bond ETFs.

In addition to investing services, an Ellevest membership also offers comprehensive no-fee banking services*, discounted career and financial coaching, learning resources. and retirement planning services. Though some options, like retirement, are exclusive to higher-tier users, Ellevest’s 1-stop-shop for investing can be a welcome change of pace for new investors.  

Best For

  • New women investors
  • Investors looking for career planning and banking services
  • Goal-based investing

Pros

  • Unique investing methods aims to bridge gap between the sexes
  • Easy-to-operate platform and mobile app
  • Low-cost pricing

Cons

  • Retirement and multi-goal investing only available at higher-priced tiers
  • No app available for Android users
securely through Ellevest's website

Why Use Ellevest to Invest?

  • Ellevest makes it exceptionally easy to get started. Simply answer a quick questionnaire and make your 1st deposit to begin.
  • No-fee banking ditches overdraft, ATM and account maintenance fees.**
  • Flat-rate pricing can be beneficial for investors with a larger amount of assets under management.

Ellevest Quick Summary 

Portfolio asset classesStock ETFs, bond ETFs, alternative ETFs
PlatformStraightforward, beginner-oriented; ideal for new investors
Mobile appWell-designed and easy to navigate
Account minimum$0 
Account management fees$1 to $9 per month depending on membership plan

Ellevest Fees and Account Minimums

Unlike most competing robo-advisors, Ellevest doesn’t charge you a percentage fee on the amount of assets you have under management. Instead, Ellevest charges a flat-rate monthly fee that varies depending on which plan tier you select. Ellevest offers 3 membership plans at varying monthly rates: Essential, Plus or Executive.

Membership planEssentialPlusExecutive
Included benefitsInvesting, Learning, Banking, 20% discount on coaching servicesInvesting, Learning, Banking, 30% discount on coaching services, Retirement servicesInvesting, Learning, Banking, 50% discount on coaching services, Retirement services, Multi-goal investing
Price$1 per month$5 per month$9 per month

There is no minimum deposit required to open an account with Ellevest. However, certain portfolios have minimum values required to receive the correct ratio of assets allocations. These minimums range from $1 to $240 depending on the portfolio composition. Private wealth services are available for investors managing at least $1 million in assets.

Ellevest Usability

Ellevest provides investors with a wide range of tools and services that make investing approachable and less intimidating for beginners. Some of our favorite Ellevest features include:

  • Easy signups and account creations. Ellevest makes it easy to create your account and begin investing with assistance from the platform’s robo-advisor. Begin by entering a little information about yourself, your future financial goals, your risk tolerance and more. The platform will then create an ideal asset allocation that takes your unique needs into account. 

When you schedule a deposit from your bank account into your investment account, the platform will automatically divide your funds between a customized selection of stock, bond and alternative investment ETFs. With a focus on diversification and managing risk, Ellevest provides new investors with an easy 1st foray into the stock market.     

Ellevest divides investors’ capital between 21 tax-efficient ETF classes. This approach provides an enhanced level of protection and diversification for new investors.

  • Impact investing options. Ellevest puts a unique spin on socially responsible investing with the option to invest in the Ellevest Impact Portfolios instead of the Ellevest Core portfolio. When you choose an Impact Portfolio, Ellevest will invest your capital in companies that place women in leadership positions, have policies in place that advance female leadership, invest funds in local community projects and more.

Ellevest Impact Portfolios were designed using the same principles of diversification and low expense ratios that guide Ellevest Core portfolios. Up to 53% of your investment funds will be diverted into socially responsible and impact funds, while the remainder makes up the same level of diversification that you expect from the Ellevest Core portfolios. 

This means that you won’t need to sacrifice profits in order to make a difference with your investments and support socially- and economically-responsible companies. 

  • Comprehensive education and career counseling options. Though Ellevest accepts clients of all sexes and gender identities, the company was founded to make investing easier and more empowering for female users. Ellevest offers a complete in-app selection of digital learning tools, workshops, magazines, courses and progress reports to help you keep your investments on-track and in alignment with your goals as well as learn more about the sphere of investing.

In addition to financial advising services, Ellevest also offers career and budgeting coaching for purchase (and members will get 20-50% off the retail price). Consult with financial planners and career coaches to receive actionable advice that you can use to transition to a new career or increase your prospects at your current job. Coaching sessions are customized to meet your individual needs and prioritize your unique goals. 

Ellevest earns top marks for its beginner-oriented platform and user-friendly features. Though experienced investors may not find as many educational resources as with other advising services, novice investors will appreciate the straightforward language and guided investment options offered by Ellevest. 

Ellevest Customer Support

Ellevest offers a few unique methods to get in contact with the customer support team:

  • By email. To contact Ellevest’s customer support team by email, send a message to support@ellevest.com.
  • By text message. To contact Ellevest by text, send a message to 315-ELL-0123.
  • By phone. Call the Ellevest’s support team at 844-ELL-7100. If you aren’t able to access a team member when you call, you may leave a message and request future contact. An Ellevest team member will call you back as soon as possible.

Though Ellevest doesn’t offer specific customer service hours, the company states that it makes an effort to respond to all inquiries submitted during standard business hours. Ellevest doesn’t currently offer a specific contact method for men and women living with hearing limitations. 

Ellevest Offerings

Ellevest is an investment advisory service aimed at helping women invest more effectively. The platform offers 6 unique areas of financial planning and services: investing, banking*, learning, coaching, retirement planning and multi-goal investing. 

Some features are limited to higher-level account tiers. For example, only Plus and Executive account holders can access retirement planning features. Be sure to take this into account when you decide which Ellevest account is best suited for your needs.

Let’s take a look at a few of the services you can access through Ellevest in each category. 

Investing

Ellevest’s primary offering is its robo-advising services geared towards female investors. Ellevest’s platform takes pay gaps, longer lifespans and career breaks into account when it calculates an ideal asset ratio for female investors. This unique feature can make it easier for women who would typically keep their capital in a savings account to begin investing for the 1st time.

Getting started with Ellevest’s investing service is incredibly simple. Sign up for an account to activate your membership, answer a few questions about yourself and receive your personalized investment portfolio in as little as a few minutes. 

Ellevest divides your assets between 21 low-cost ETFs and mutual funds according to your unique risk tolerance, career and money goals and more. When you schedule a deposit, Ellevest will allocate funds as shown, and the platform will reallocate funds in the future in accordance with your goals. 

Learning

Ellevest offers a range of educational tools you can access directly through your account. Some of Ellevest’s digital education offerings include:

  • Virtual workshops. Ellevest allows you to view and attend digital workshops from professional financial planners and career coaches.
  • Learning library. Ellevest’s in-app learning library includes tips, videos and articles you can access from anywhere.
  • Courses and guides. Interested in a specific career or financial topic? Sign up for access through your inbox and work through course materials at your own pace.

Personalized progress reports are also available to help you track your specific progress towards the goals you’ve set for yourself.

Banking

In addition to investing services, Ellevest also offers convenient FDIC-insured banking services as well.* Some of the benefits you’ll enjoy when you bank with Ellevest include:

  • Automatic emergency fund creation. When you spend money using your Ellevest debit card, you have the option to enable roundupto make saving easier. Roundup will round your purchases up to the nearest dollar, allotting excess change to a separated account. This helps make saving money easier by taking the work out of reallocating funds.***
  • No hidden fees. Ellevest does not charge account maintenance, transfer, minimum balance or overdraft fees.
  • Unlimited ATM withdrawal services. If you make a withdrawal from an ATM that charges you a fee, Ellevest will reimburse you.**

All Ellevest banking accounts are FDIC-insured up to $250,000 and backed by 256-bit encryption.

Coaching

Coaching access provides you with 1-on-1 sessions with financial planners and career coaches. Your meeting can be customized to fit your unique needs, ranging from assistance budgeting to help transitioning to a new role at work. Coaching sessions start at $125 per session, and discounts of 20-50% are available depending on your membership plan. 

Retirement

Ellevest’s retirement planning services give you a more personalized look at what you need to save to retire comfortably. Retirement services through Ellevest place a particular emphasis on female investors — the company says despite the fact women tend to live 6 to 8 years longer than men, they generally retire with just 2/3 of the money as their male counterparts. 

Retirement services allow you to open an IRA, and Ellevest retirement planning experts will assist you in allocating your funds according to your risk tolerance and years until retirement. They will also assist you in rebalancing your portfolio as you get closer to retirement age. Retirement services are currently only available to Plus and Executive members. 

Multi-Goal Investing

If you’re like most investors, you probably have multiple financial goals and a limited amount of capital to work with to achieve them. Multi-goal investing through Ellevest allows you to set up to 6 individual goals and work towards them simultaneously with forecasting and planning assistance. Multi-goal investing is currently only available to Executive members. 

Ellevest Mobile App

Ellevest’s iOS mobile app offers the same functionality as its desktop platform, which is also optimized for mobile. Some of the features that make Ellevest’s app particularly useful and easy-to-operate include:

  • Quick account signups. If you don’t already have an Ellevest account, you can quickly sign up directly through the app. The app offers the full functionality of the website signup process, and you can even make your 1st deposit directly through the app just minutes after signing up.
  • Tips, guides and workshops. Ellevest’s learning center has been optimized for mobile, allowing you to learn and use resources no matter where you are.  
  • All-in-1 functionality. The Ellevest app is a 1-stop-shop for all of your banking and investing needs. Bank, learn, deposit and track your progress with just a few taps.

The Ellevest app is currently available as a free download through the Apple iOS store. Currently, there is no app option for Android users. 

Ellevest Overall Rating

Though Ellevest’s platform of investing for women might seem like little more than a marketing gimmick, the truth is that the platform does work hard to account for variations between the sexes. Women are less likely to invest their money for a lot of reasons.

Ellevest effectively bridges that gap with an intuitive platform, plentiful resource and learning center and customized portfolios that account for women’s longer lifespans and discrepancy in wages. Its banking and career guidance features are equally as impressive, offering a range of services in a convenient package.

There are a few areas where Ellevest can improve. In the future, we’d love to see the platform open retirement savings options to all account holders, regardless of tier. We’d also love to see Ellevest add a native app for Android users and to continue expanding its educational offerings. However, as it is now, Ellevest offers a unique look at female-forward investing and a more customized, approachable platform for beginner investors.  

*Banking products and services are provided by Coastal Community Bank, Member FDIC, pursuant to license by Mastercard International. The Ellevest Spend and Save accounts are FDIC-insured up to $250,000 per depositor through Coastal Community Bank, Member FDIC.

**Domestic ATM transaction fees will be reimbursed if a payroll direct deposit has been received within the prior 30 days of the ATM transaction settlement. International ATM withdrawal fee of $5 will apply.

***If you opt into the Roundup Program for debit card purchases, each settled (i.e. fully completed) purchase transaction made with your Ellevest Debit Card will be rounded up to the nearest whole U.S. dollar. The Roundup amount will be transferred from your Spend account to your Save account. Foreign purchases are rounded up to the nearest whole dollar after the purchase is converted to U.S. dollars. ATM withdrawals and transactions in whole US dollars, e.g. $20.00 are excluded from the Roundup program. If at the time of settlement of a purchase, your Ellevest Spend Account has insufficient available funds to cover the full amount of the Roundup transfer, the Roundup Transfer will not be made. If a purchase is canceled or reversed for any reason (including disputes), the corresponding Roundup Transfer will not be reversed.  You can opt-out of the Roundup Program at any time.