Are you considering using a robo advisor for your investments? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Robo advisors are becoming more and more popular as an investment option for Canadians who are looking for an easier and more laid back approach to their investments. With low management fees, trustworthy experts behind the companies, and a strong track record, robo advisors are a smart investment option for those looking for a ‘set it and forget it’ type strategy.
To clarify, robo advisors are not robots. While the process of investing is automated by an algorithm, that algorithm is carefully monitored by real human beings who are also there for customer support. Canada has several robo advisors, each one bringing something different to the table. In this robo advisor review, I’ll be taking a look at Questwealth Portfolios.
Questwealth Portfolios stands out in the realm of Canadian robo advisors as it isn’t really a typical robo advisor, it’s actually a hybrid. Where most typical robo advisors practice passive asset allocation, Questwealth Portfolios actively manages the allocations of their globally-diversified portfolios constructed with passive ETFs. In this Questwealth Portfolios review, I’ll be sharing what you need to know about the company and their strategy to determine if Queswealth Portfolios is the best choice for you.
Questwealth Portfolios accounts
When it comes to accounts, Questwealth Portfolios has one of the largest selections available in terms of account offerings. Questwealth Portfolios has options for retirement, education, and short term including the following:
- Spousal RRSP
- Family RESP
- Locked-in RRSP
Keep in mind that even if you already have an RRSP with another financial institution, you can easily transfer it over to Questwealth Portfolios to take advantage of their lower fee structure. In this article, I explain the steps to do so.
Questwealth Portfolios fees
Questwealth Portfolios is known for its competitive pricing. In fact, in terms of fees, it Questwealth Portfolios has the lowest rates in Canada. They are:
- For accounts with $1,000-$99,999: 0.25%
- For accounts over $100,000: 0.2%
As for MERs, under Questwealth MERs average around 0.19%. However, MER fees depend on your portfolio and can be as high as 0.35% with SRIs (socially responsible investing). That means the average portfolio will cost you about 0.39% – 0.44% but it could go as high as .60% which is still cheaper than many of the top robo advisors in Canada.
Those interested in moving ahead with Questwealth Portfolios do need to know that there is a minimum requirement of $1,000.
Questwealth Portfolios review
Questwealth Portfolios is a subsidiary of Questrade Financial Group Inc. In terms of Robo Advisors, Questrade Portfolios is one of the newest ones on the market; at least in terms of how it works as a robo advisor today.
Questrade’s robo program started in 2014 under the name of Portfolio IQ. However, in late 2018 Questrade rebranded it’s robo advisor program and became Questwealth Portfolios. The main difference? The rock-bottom management fees which are currently the lowest in Canada.
As mentioned earlier, Questwealth Portfolios are a hybrid and use both passive and active ETFs. When it comes to investing, Questwealth Portfolios puts your investment into one of five ETF portfolios of varying risk. These portfolios are:
- Aggressive: for high-risk investing
- Growth: for medium to high-risk investing
- Balanced: for medium-risk investing
- Income: for medium to low-risk investing
- Conservative: for low-risk investing
Once you have selected the portfolio that best fits your investment goal and financial situation, it will be actively managed by portfolio managers who adjust based on market research.
Investors can also take advantage of the discount brokerage offerings as well. While this may not be of interest to everyone, those who want to take more action in their investments will find this aspect enticing.
Of course, like every other robo advisor on the market, Questwealth Portfolios has its benefits and pitfalls. Here’s a look at the main pros and cons of this Canadian robo advisor.
Questwealth Portfolio pros
- Lowest management fees on the Canadian market
- Easy to use platform and website
- Investment advice available by phone and email
Questwealth Portfolio cons
- Minimum requirement (though, it is low) of $1000
How Questwealth Portfolios compares to others
So, how does Questwealth Portfolios measure up to other popular robo advisors in Canada?
Questwealth Portfolio’s hybrid approach definitely makes it stand out in terms of the other typical robo advisors. While some may love the active aspect, others may choose to stick to a more passive approach such as that taken by Wealthsimple, Justwealth, Tangerine, or Nest Wealth.
On the other hand, Questwealth Portfolio’s extremely low management fees make this robo advisor an incredibly attractive option to all types of investors. Plus, their easy to use platform makes it easy for investors of all levels to navigate explore.
My Questwealth Portfolios review is positive. Some people will like the idea of having a somewhat active management style while still having passive ETFs in their portfolio. More importantly, Questwealth Portfolios has the lowest management fees out there for robo advisor which will definitely appeal to some people.