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AJ Wealth Review

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AJ Wealth Strategies, LLC, more commonly known as AJ Wealth, is a financial advisor firm based in New York City. It has more than $1.4 billion in assets under management (AUM). The firm offers services such as financial planning and portfolio management.

AJ Wealth Background

AJ Wealth was founded in April of 2012. The firm is owned and operated by Managing Principal Justyn G. Volesko and Managing Principal Andrew Cooper. Headquartered in New York, the firm employs approximately 24 employees, 11 of whom perform investment advisory functions. Its staff includes CFA, CFP and CPA-designated professionals.

AJ Wealth Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

AJ Wealth provides investment advice the following types of clients: 

The firm has no set minimum account size. 

Services Offered by AJ Wealth

AJ Wealth offers customized advisory services to its clients - including investment management and consulting services - primarily on a discretionary basis.

With regard to portfolio management, advisors work to understand clients' risk tolerance, retirement goals and financial situation before creating a diversified portfolio with low-cost and largely liquid investments. Each individual client's risk tolerance and financial situation will vary, resulting in personalized asset allocation. The investment vehicles that advisors choose for portfolios may include stocks and bonds, ETFs, U.S. government bonds, municipal securities, mutual funds and limited partnerships. Advisors also use annuities, alternative investment strategies and other securities.

With regard to financial planning and consulting services, AJ Wealth offers a variety of services to individuals and families, according to a written agreement between the firm and the client. Depending on clients' needs, services may be offered in a variety of areas, including but not limited to investment planning, retirement planning, personal savings, cash flow planning, education savings, estate planning, taxes, insurance and philanthropic planning. Furthermore, consulting services are offered for banking and lending, including third-party recommendations. Clients are not required to implement any of these planning recommendations made by advisors.

In limited and specific cases, clients might request AJ Wealth to provide assistance in closing real estate purchases. In these cases, AJ Wealth acts as a trustee on a revocable real estate land trust, which will grant AJ Wealth the limited power of attorney to sign closing documents on a real estate purchase. This service is offered on a very limited basis to existing clients, and the firm can decline to provide this service at its own discretion; it is offered as a client courtesy, so there is no fee for this service and nor is a separate agreement required.

AJ Wealth Investing Philosophy

The firm primarily uses fundamental analysis methods when developing strategies for clients. With fundamental analysis, which involves looking closely at particular metrics of a stock to assess whether its value is realistic, a firm usually evaluates the fundamental financial condition and competitive position of a particular fund, issuer or company. It analyzes information about the management team, investment strategies, past performance, reputation and financial strength in relation to the asset allocations.

AJ Wealth uses various sources to complete research and analysis, including financial media companies, third-party research materials, web-based resources as well as reviewing company activities (including annual reports, press releases and research prepared by others).

In general, AJ Wealth uses a long-term investment strategy for clients, in keeping with client financial goals and situations.Typically, the firm will hold all or part of a security for more than one year but will also hold the security for a shorter period in order to re-balance a portfolio or achieve liquidity needs for the client. Sometimes AJ Wealth will also buy and sell positions that are more short-term, again depending on client goals and/or the specific characteristics of the security, sector or asset class.

Of course, all potential and current clients must keep in mind that no investment strategy guarantees against risk or loss. 

Fees Under AJ Wealth

For advisory services, fees are paid quarterly in advance and according to the terms of the agreement between the advisor and the client. Fees are based on the market value of AUM at the end of each calendar quarter. They range up to 1% based on the following fee schedule:

Assets Under Management Annual Rate
$0 to $10,000,000 1.00%
$10,000,000 to $20,000,000 0.75%
$20,000,000 to and Over 0.50%

At AJ Wealth, accounts smaller than $2 million are charged more than the industry average, which is 0.95%, according to a 2018 study of 1,500 firms by RIA in a Box. Here is the estimated dollar amount you'd pay in advisory fees based on the size of your account:

*Estimated investment management fees do not include brokerage, custodial, third-party manager or other fees, which can vary in amount.
Estimated Investment Management Fees for Portfolio Management Services at AJ Wealth*
Your Assets Annual Fee Amount Charged on All AUM
$10MM $100,000
$20MM $150,000
$30MM $150,000
$50MM $250,000
$100MM $500,000

It is important to note that services with multiple objectives, specific reporting requirements, portfolio restrictions and other complex factors can be charged a higher fee or additional fixed fees. Fees are negotiable at the discretion of the advisor.

With regards to financial planning and consulting services, AJ Wealth provides these on a fixed-fee basis that ranges from $5,000 to $100,000. This fee is negotiable depending on the nature and complexity of each client's situation.

Again, fees and expenses may vary and additional fees may apply, so be sure to read agreements carefully and contact the firm if you have questions.

As stated above, the firm provides a trustee/power of attorney service as a client courtesy in very limited cases and does not charge a fee for this particular service.

Learn more about advisors' typical costs here.

What to Watch Out For

Within the past 10 years, AJ Wealth has not undergone any disciplinary or legal action deemed material to a client’s evaluation of its business integrity. You can view its latest Form ADV on the official website of the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC). As an SEC-registered investment advisor, the firm is legally obligated to uphold its fiduciary duty and work in clients’ best interests at all times.

Opening an Account With AJ Wealth

To open an account with AJ Wealth, you can visit the firm's website or call (212) 729-7750.

All information is accurate as of the writing of this article.

Tips for Finding a Financial Advisor 

  • Interview at least three advisors before choosing one. This ensures that you have enough context about fees and investment strategies to make an informed decision. To find more advisors in your area, use our interactive financial advisor matching tool. It links you with up to three local pros. 
  • Ask candidates whether they adhere to the fiduciary standard of putting clients’ interests first. Yes is the ideal answer, of course. But they may follow a lower standard of providing only suitable recommendations.

How Long $1mm Lasts in Retirement

SmartAsset's interactive map highlights places where $1 million will last the longest in retirement. Zoom between states and the national map to see the top spots in each region. Also, scroll over any city to learn about the cost of living in retirement for that location.

Least
Most
Rank City Housing Expenses Food Expenses Healthcare Expenses Utilities Expenses Transportation Expenses

Methodology We analyzed data on average expenditures for seniors, cost of living and investment returns to determine how many years of retirement a $1 million nest egg would cover in cities across America.

First, we looked at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the average annual expenditures of seniors. We then applied cost of living data from the Council for Community and Economic Research to adjust those national average spending levels based on the costs of each expense category (housing, food, healthcare, utilities, transportation and other) in each city. Using this data, SmartAsset calculated the average cost of living for retirees in the largest U.S. cities.

We assumed the $1 million would grow at a real return (interest minus inflation) of 2%. Then, we divided $1 million by the sum of each of those annual numbers to determine how long $1 million would cover retirement expenses in each of the cities in our study. Cities where $1 million lasted the longest ranked the highest in the study.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Council for Community and Economic Research