Valuepension

Valuepension Review (2nd pillar pension fund) from Finpension – Best in Switzerland?

Overall Rating of our Valuepension Review:
4.7 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ · 🏆 Market Leader ·

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Valuepension is a product from finpension, who aim to offer ‘fair, digital and transparent pension solutions’ for customers looking to grow their 2nd pillar pension fund (aka vested benefits) in order to maximise their retirement benefits.

A competitively priced, digital solution sounds very appealing in a traditional space full of high fees and complex contracts.

Can Valuepension deliver on their promises?

As always, I’ll be documenting the account opening process in this Valuepension review with a simple step by step process to give you all the pros and cons of the latest offering from Valuepension.

Before we get into the review, a quick recap.

🎁 If you are ready to try a free Valuepension demo, don’t forget to use this link to open your free account and you can get started in under 5minutes!

What is a vested benefits account?

Vested benefits form part of the 2nd pillar pension structure in Switzerland and relate to your occupational contributions.

If you leave your current employer (e.g. moving abroad or taking a career break) you need to park these contributions in your own private vested benefits account until you start working again or retire. Once you start working in Switzerland again, they are moved back to your new employer.

Typically, parking your vested benefits with a bank will result in very little to zero growth during the period you are not contribution towards it. Typically in the region of 0.05 – 0.1%.

Which sucks.

Valuepension however, give you the option to have this invested in index funds – enabling you to generate significantly higher returns over the long term compared to a standard bank account.

Let’s get onto the Valuepension review.

Valuepension Review: Pros and Cons

Valuepension has bought a product to market that is doing a lot of great things. It’s very hard to pick out negatives with Valuepension, putting my subjective view of the bland look and feel aside, it’s a fantastic product in Switzerland to accommodate a vested benefits account.

ProsCons
  • Very low fees and you can have a 100% allocation with stocks.
  • Very fast account opening and onboarding process
  • Easy to edit and change your portfolio.
  • Sustainable investing isn’t a standard offering yet (although can be requested)
  • The design and UX is functional but very ‘barebones’ – it won’t be winning any UX awards anytime soon.

How to open an account with Valuepension

Landing on the Valuepension homepage it’s pretty clear where you need to go, just click ‘Get started’ to er… get started:

Click ‘Get Started’ again after you’ve red the brief overview of the 3 step process:

First up is the risk questionnaire – How long do you plan on investing your vested benefits? Make your choice and click ‘Next’

Next, select what percentage share of vested capital is relevant to your total assets:

How much do you know about finance in general..? Make your choice and hit ‘Next’

And that’s it on the risk front. Probably one of the shortest investing risk assessments ever created! I was surprised I wasn’t asked for my age or reasons for needing a vested benefits account in the first place – I would have thought this could have impacted my risk profile.

You’ll see I’m marked as ‘High’ based on the inputs I gave. This can be edited later if you want to change it. Click ‘Next’ to move onto the next steps.

A nice green tick for risk, and we are ready to select our investment strategy. Click next.

You are taken to a pre-selected strategy based on the result of your risk assessment. As you can see I have the ‘High’ strategy which has built a portfolio of 60% equities (personally I find that more of a ‘Medium’ level of equities) which can be edited by clicking on the ‘Customize’ pen highlighted below.

Would be nice to see the graph display % returns here

You can move through the different strategies to see how they look and what’s in each. Take some time to cycle through them:

I’m already starting to see this platform is super flexible – just a click on the ‘Customize’ pencil and I can edit the exact percentage amounts of my portfolio.

You can also click the ‘+’ sign on the left sign to select further funds. Great flexibility if you are a nerd like me:

Once you are happy with your strategy and any needed edits, simply click ‘Select strategy’ and then ‘Next’ on the next screen:

With the Risk and Strategy sections complete, we move onto confirming the personal details.

Enter your mobile number here to kick things off and your password of choice:

Grab the SMS confirmation code which should arrive instantly…

Add to the form and click ‘Next’…

Password set and ready to go. Now click ‘Next’..

Enter your name, address and contact details on the next screen, including AHV number, check the T&C’s after reading and click ‘Complete’ to move on:

Nice. All done.

How painless was that?

Now you need to download the PDFs, print and sign and return to Valuepension:

If you check your email you’ll have the three PDFs attached there too:

  • The agreement with valuepension
  • A vested benefits transfer form
  • A statement of your risk profile
The email with PDF attachments

Logging in for the first time

While I was in my email inbox, another email arrived from Valuepension a minute later asking me to confirm my email address (two emails seems a little clunky guys) so I did that also:

The link then takes you to your profile page in your account which confirms your email is verified.

You can select the drop down in the top right corner and select ‘My Portfolio’ to move onto your dashboard:

You’ll now be able to view your dashboard, and over time see the performance of your portfolio, along with the various allocations and the asset class exposure.

Funding the Valuepension account

Once you’ve printed, signed and posted the Valuepension documents, they’ll start the process to transfer your assets over which typically takes around 3-5 days.

Login & Security

SSL encryption and https connections are standard, and its important to note you cannot directly trade/transact through the web browser. You are required to download the correct PDF form from the documents section and confirm such actions (e.g. moving/closing account) via snail mail.

Also, Valuepension are not a bank – your assets are held with one of their custodian banks, such as Credit Suisse or Graubündner Kantonalbank.

Fees & Charges

The fees are what first caught my eye with Valuepension – and on closer inspection I wasn’t disappointed. They really are significantly ahead of the competition with regards to their pricing and also the transparency on where the costs are.

Such transparency is refreshing. For example:

  • 0.49% all in fee (ex. tax, bringing it up a few points)
  • A few charges for routine admin tasks (e.g. if you close your account under a year)
  • Domiciled in canton Schwyz, which is great for reducing your tax (just 4.8%) if you leave CH.

Customer Support

Customer support is solid and very responsive. In a few test emails we’ve had replies responded to quickly and the staff support English well.

There are some common FAQs also available which cover the basics, but more focused on newcomers who haven’t opened accounts yet – less focus on existing customers, so some more specific FAQs would be useful here once you’ve on-boarded.

Additional Resources

On the valuepension site itself, there is very little to be seen – its very ‘barebones’ and built for function. To read and learn more, you need to jump over to their more mature portal – finpension.ch – which has a good blog and a number of insightful posts which add good value.

VIAC vs valuepension

Check out my viac vs valuepension article here. They both offer very competitive offerings and I dig into the details in the comparison post.

Spoiler alert: Valuepension has the edge and looks better value 😉

Background info on valuepension

Valuepension was setup in Dec 2017 and is a product of finpension, who have been estalbished since 2016. Today finpension have over 400million CHF assets under management, with Valuepension accounting for 200million of that and is headed up by MD Beat Bühlmann.

Valuepension (finpension) have offices at Winkelriedstrasse 36 6003 Lucerne.

Closing thoughts

Valuepension have a great product for your second pillar vested benefits account with a simple on-boarding process, clean interface and no hidden fees.

The end to end process of the account creation process is very light and straight forward, you are ready to go in literally minutes. The offering itself of using low cost index funds combined with flexible portfolio management with the backbone of Swiss custodian banking makes it a great all-round contender vs the competition in Switzerland.

If you are taking an extended break from full time employment, have lost your job or looking to leave Switzerland – valuepension make a logical choice to support your second pillar during those times.

Thanks for reading and I hope this valuepension review was useful!

🎁 If you are ready to try a free Valuepension demo, don’t forget to use this link to open your free account and you can get started in under 5minutes!

Valuepension FAQ

Are Valuepension a bank?

No, they are a foundation and use custodian banks such as Credit Suisse and Graubündner Kantonalbank to hold your assets.

Are Valuepension good value?

Valuepension are great value with an all in fee of just 0.49%. Ask your bank for a quote and you’ll see prices double that.

How does valuepension offer their service so cheaply?

Good question, I’m glad you asked. Valuepension use index funds (not ETFs) to reduce cost and have access to the portfolio of institutional funds of Credit Suisse to take advantage of lower rates not accessible to private investors.

Are valuepension regulated?

Yes, by the highest standards and regulations in Switzerland. You can read more on their website.

About Investing Hero

Mr Investing Hero

I’m a British expat who’s been living in Switzerland for the last 10 years. I’m a digital marketing professional by day, and anonymous investing blogger by night. I cover investing basics, robo advisor reviews and epic how to guides. You can call me ‘Mr. IH’ for short, and read more about me here.