Vanguard mutual fund fees & minimums
Find out how much you'll need to open an account and how much—or how little—you'll pay.
Mutual fund fees and expenses at a glance
On average, Vanguard mutual fund expense ratios are 82% less than the industry average.*
Account service fees
Account service fees are automatically waived when you register for secure access to our website and let us send account documents to you electronically. They're also waived for all Voyager, Voyager Select, Flagship, and Flagship Select Services clients.
If none of these apply, a $20 fee will be charged annually for each fund account in which you have a balance of less than $10,000.
Purchase and redemption fees
Very few Vanguard funds charge fees when you buy and sell shares. The fees are designed to help those funds cover higher transaction costs and protect long-term investors by discouraging short-term, speculative trading.
Fees vary between 0.25% and 1.00% of the amount of the transaction.
Fees you won't pay at Vanguard
Minimum investment requirements
The following minimums apply to individual and joint accounts, Roth and traditional IRAs, UGMA/UTMA accounts, and most other account types.
- $1,000 for Vanguard Target Retirement Funds and Vanguard STAR® Fund.
- $3,000 for most other Vanguard funds.**
- $10,000 for most index funds and tax-managed funds.
- $50,000 for most actively managed funds.
- $100,000 for certain sector-specific index funds.
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OTHER VANGUARD SHARE CLASSES
ETF Shares are available for more than 60 Vanguard funds through a Vanguard Brokerage Account.
Institutional Shares are available primarily for companies and organizations and require a minimum investment of $5 million.
A mutual fund's annual operating expenses, expressed as a percentage of the fund's average net assets. It's calculated annually and removed from the fund's earnings before they're distributed to investors, directly reducing investors' returns.
An expense ratio includes management, administrative, marketing, and distribution fees. It doesn't include loads or purchase or redemption fees.
A sales fee that's charged when you buy fund shares. Fees can be as high as 8.5% of your purchase amountwhich would reduce a $100,000 investment to $91,500.
A sales fee that's charged when you sell fund shares. Fees can start as high as 5% to 7% but typically decline each year you're invested in the fund, ultimately disappearing after 5 to 10 years.
This may also be referred to as a "contingent deferred sales charge."
Purchase fees are charged generally by funds that routinely face higher transaction costs when buying securities for the portfolio.
Redemption fees are charged generally by funds that want to discourage market-timing.
Neither is considered a sales charge or "load" because both are paid directly to the fund to offset higher transaction costs.
There are currently just 5 Vanguard funds (each with multiple share classes) that charge one or both of these fees. Each has a corresponding exchange-traded fund (ETF) share class that excludes these fees and can be bought and sold in your Vanguard Brokerage Account commission-free.
You must buy and sell Vanguard ETF Shares through a broker like Vanguard Brokerage Services (we offer them commission-free) or through another broker (you may incur commissions). See the Vanguard Brokerage Services commission and fee schedules for limits. Vanguard ETF Shares aren't redeemable directly with the issuing fund other than in very large aggregations worth millions of dollars. Like stocks, ETFs are subject to market volatility. When buying or selling an ETF, you'll pay or receive the current market price, which may be more or less than net asset value.