Earning money feels great, and it’s even better when your money does the work for you. When you get to a point where you’ve got some wealth and you want it to grow, a wealth management firm can help you. Read here about the best wealth management firms.
Why is wealth management so important? Let’s pretend you earn $50,000 a year or about $24 an hour at your job as an internet tech rep. After taxes, you probably net about $19 for that hour of work. It takes you about 8 hours to pocket $150.
You buy 50 shares of Foot Locker (NYSE: FL) stock at $61 a share, which costs you $3,050. The stock price goes up $3 a share, and you sell your 50 shares for $3,200 to make a profit of $150. The stock purchase and sale take place during your 8-hour workday while you are on the phone with a customer-.
Compare that $150 with the $150 you earned from slogging through hours of client-facing calls . Of course, you can’t count on an FL profit the way you know your paycheck will appear in your bank account every 2 weeks. But when you do both of these types of earning, that’s part of wealth management.
Being able to position yourself to take part in smart investments lets you in for the potential to add passive earnings to your employment pay. There’s no guarantee that you will definitely make money on your investments every time, but using wise strategies and following your personal risk tolerance levels give you the opportunity to grow your wealth.
The wealth management companies we cover here offer services to help you increase your wealth in addition to wages from a job.
Best Wealth Management Firms
Discover the best investment advisor options with Benzinga's top asset management companies reviewed below.
- Best for Long-Term Wealth Building: Empower (formerly Personal Capital)
- Best for Traditionalists: Vanguard Personal Advisor Services®
- Best for Retirees and Investors Close to Retirement: Abundant Wealth Management
- Best for Nationwide Access: Wells Fargo Advisors
1. Best for Long-Term Wealth Building: Empower (formerly Personal Capital)
Although Personal Capital (now Empower) shines brightest for higher net worth clients, its comprehensive free services for new investors offer tools that help all account holders consistently move to higher levels.
Open a free account with Empower to organize your finances in one place and get access to wealth-building tools like retirement planning, calculation of your net worth and multi-account management to cobble together the start of your own wealth management plan.
As your assets grow, you can use Empower’s investment services and wealth managers for a fee of 0.89% of assets under management.
- Free and extensive investment management tool
- Dedicated financial advisors
- Individual securities are available
- Tax optimization available
- Account minimum is $100,000
- Higher management fees than other options
2. Best for Traditionalists: Vanguard Personal Advisor Services®
If tradition and decades of responsible, proven, client-focused wealth management skills matter to you, take a look at Vanguard for your money management needs. Vanguard’s wealth managers are fiduciaries who proudly state that “every decision we make has you in mind.”
The annual cost for Vanguard Personal Advisor Services is just 0.30% of the assets they manage for you or less if your balance exceeds certain levels. Trained advisers are just a phone call away with advice that takes your personal news and goals into account.
- Fiduciary advisors and robo-advisor features available
- Inexpensive fund options
- ESG investing
- Competitive advisory fees
- Account minimum $50,000
- Buy individual stocks, bonds, crypto and other investments is not available
3. Best for Retirees and Investors Close to Retirement: Abundant Wealth Management
Abundant Wealth Management (AWM) specializes in retirees and clients nearing retirement. AWM’s comprehensive wealth management services include financial planning, investment management, asset preservation and healthcare planning including Medicare.
AWM founder Eric Lardner is committed to the belief that “managing your money wisely means being knowledgeable about your options.” Knowing why a particular action or investment choice is good goes a long way to ensuring a safe, lucrative retirement.
- Managing and monitoring portfolios
- Assistance managing risk
- Regularly scheduled performance updates and adjustments
- Account minimum is $100,000
4. Best for Nationwide Access: Wells Fargo Advisors
If you want to have nationwide access with a personal touch, you can’t beat Wells Fargo. With branches across the United States, Wells Fargo offers nationwide access with a hometown connection. Fraser Hazen, a Wells Fargo financial adviser, explains that “managed advisory investments put the focus on clients’ financial needs by establishing the fiduciary duty of the financial adviser.”
Wells Fargo’s wealth managers oversee $1.8 trillion in client assets with 17,352 registered representatives and 12,468 financial advisers, which means that over the course of your decades-long investment journey, you can walk into your wealth manager’s office and have him or her explain your mitigation plan if the stock market drops. That bear-market personal reassurance beats the cold light of a robo-adviser dashboard.
- Broad accessibility throughout the U.S.
- Services for new and advances investors
- Other banking services available
- Account minimum depends on account type
- High management fees
- Company has faced misconduct allegations
What is Wealth Management?
Any time you have a group of valuables, you need to manage them. Whether it is bobble-head dolls, rare books, your kids or your money, you want to direct and supervise them for safety and productivity. Use an expert, a company, or a robo-adviser to help you manage your wealth with the ultimate goal of increasing that wealth. The companies on this page offer affordable, reliable, accessible, comprehensive services to help you achieve your goals.
How Does Wealth Management Work?
Procuring the services of the right wealth-management company isn’t hard. Comparison-shop for the best fit. Researching the companies this article is a great start, and if you like some of the offerings, explore the websites. For each firm, personal assistance with a real human being is a phone call away.
Talk to a company representative for more information and to get a sense of how the company works. From there, you’ll set up an account, share your goals and risk-tolerance levels, create a plan, transfer cash or investments into your accounts and get started. Most firms establish regular durations for reviewing goals, and all firms answer questions or provide answers when you have a specific question.
Goals for Wealth Management
As the term wealth management has become more common, some money management companies have shifted toward a model that asks clients about life goals, working environments and spending patterns as a way to increase communication.
Wealth management is about more than just directing investments; it’s a comprehensive exploration of your whole life. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) “A Roadmap To Your Financial Security Through Saving and Investing” is a good place to start your educational journey in English or Spanish.
The career you choose, the place you live, the home you buy, the spending you do and the family situations you support all affect your wealth. Whether you manage that wealth on your own or with the guidance of experts, each piece affects your end result.
Alternatives of Wealth Management
Ideas of traditional wealth management might call up a mental picture of a large Victorian family with the portly patriarch smiling benevolently at his heavily jeweled wife and his bountiful progeny in the opulent setting of their 50-room mansion. Today’s wealth-management advisers don’t expect you to live in a castle.
While some financial planners only focus on ultra-wealthy clients, there’s a growing cadre of financial advisers who work with both affluent and middle-income folks. If you are just starting out with investing, you will find affordable experts ready to help you manage your wealth. Check out our article on the best investment firms.
Find a Wealth Management Firm Today
If you have any extra left over at the end of the month, you are a candidate for wealth management expertise. Find the right firm to help you step up to the next level of wealth. A click on any of the companies listed here will start you on your journey to higher net wealth.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much money do you need for a wealth manager?
The amount of money needed to hire a wealth manager varies. Some wealth-management firms serve only the mega-wealthy; others require account minimums to use their services.
Many robo-adviser wealth management apps require very little to open an account. If you are just starting out, choose one of the firms that works with new investors to grow their money to a level where you can hire a more expensive wealth manager.
Is it worth paying a wealth manager?
So much of what we pay others to do we could do ourselves. I know how to cook, color my hair, iron, do my nails, hem a skirt. Even so, I go to restaurants, visit the hair and nail salon and drop stuff off at the dry cleaners.
I could do those things, but I prefer to pay someone else to do them for me, sometimes out of dislike for the job, from lack of time or because they do it better.
If you are reading this article, you probably know how to budget, manage money and trade stocks. However, you may find that you don’t have enough time to spend on those activities.
Even if you are good at those things, that financial knowledge is just one part of your busy life. Paying an expert like a wealth manager or CFP® can help you level up.
What is the minimum assets for wealth management?
The minimum assets for wealth management can vary depending on the specific wealth management firm or financial institution. While there is no set minimum, many firms typically require a minimum amount of investable assets to qualify for their wealth management services. This minimum can range from a few hundred thousand dollars to several million dollars. The purpose of having a minimum asset requirement is to ensure that the firm can provide comprehensive and personalized wealth management services to clients who have a significant amount of wealth to manage.
About Kathryn Hauer, CFP®
Kathy is an expert in finance (personal, corporate), financial planning, financial literacy, tax preparation and laws, saving and investing, retirement, insurance, careers, college education planning and financing, cannabis, gig economy, forming and running a business, credit and debt issues, blue-collar workers, and military issues. She has a strong interest in crypto, DeFi, FinTech, InsureTech, AgTech.