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Top Financial Advisors in Albany, NY

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Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Albany, New York

Albany is one of the largest cities in New York State, so it should come as no surprise that there are plenty of financial advisor firms to pick from here. To help you differentiate between the options before you, we review each firm’s minimums, services, typical clientele, advisory certifications and more. SmartAsset has also created a financial advisor matching tool that can take your answers to our short questionnaire and pair you with local financial advisors that are equipped to meet your needs.

Rank Financial Advisor Assets Managed Minimum Assets Financial Services More Information
1 Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$1,421,532,694 $500,000
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Publication of periodicals or newsletters
  • Consulting

Minimum Assets

$500,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Publication of periodicals or newsletters
  • Consulting
2 Independent Family Office, LLC Find an Advisor

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$405,816,157 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Reporting

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Reporting
3 Bender Lane Advisory, LLC Bender Lane Advisory, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$371,388,207 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Family office services

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Family office services
4 Curran Wealth Management Curran Wealth Management logo Find an Advisor

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$338,000,000 Varies based on account type
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Publication of periodicals or newsletters

Minimum Assets

Varies based on account type

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Publication of periodicals or newsletters
5 Capital Financial Planning, LLC Capital Financial Planning, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$287,442,514 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
6 AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$224,000,000 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
7 Arista Advisory Group, LLC Arista Advisory Group, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$172,385,342 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services
8 Arista Wealth Advisors, Ltd. Arista Wealth Advisors, Ltd. logo Find an Advisor

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$137,789,239 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management

How We Found the Top Financial Advisor Firms in Albany, New York

Only firms that are both registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and located in Albany, New York were under consideration for this list. We limited our list to SEC-registered firms because such firms must abide by fiduciary duty. Next, we removed any firms that either didn’t offer financial planning services, didn’t manage individual accounts or had disclosures on their Form ADV. The remaining firms are listed below, ordered from the most assets under management (AUM) to the least.

Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC

Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC

Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC comes in at first-place on our list of the top firms in Albany. With $1.42 billion in assets under management (AUM), it boasts $1 billion more in AUM than second-place Independent Family Office, LLC. The fee-based firm employs nine financial advisors, two of whom are chartered financial analysts (CFAs).

The client base at this firm is extremely varied. While most of its clientele consists of high-net-worth individuals, Hugh Johnson Advisors also manages assets for charitable organizations, businesses, pension and profit-sharing plans, government entities and a Taft-Hartley plan. There is a $500,000 negotiable minimum at this firm.

Some members of the advisory staff here can earn commissions from the sale of insurance products and securities. This is a potential conflict of interest, but the firm still abides by fiduciary duty.

Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC Background

Hugh Johnson Advisors took on its current name in 2010, but its history can be traced back to 1994 when it was originally known as First Albany Asset Management. As of now, the firm is principally owned by chairman, chief investment officer (CIO) and founder Hugh Johnson and president and CEO Daniel Nolan. The firm’s website claims that its staff has over 100 years of collective experience.

Investment management and wealth management are the premier services at this firm. While the former involves building a portfolio according to your needs, the latter is much more in-depth. As a matter of fact, wealth management services here encompass goal-based planning focused on retirement planning, estate planning, tax planning, cash flow planning and more.

Hugh Johnson Advisors, LLC Investing Strategy

While many firms restrict themselves to long-term investing, Hugh Johnson Advisors uses both long- and short-term purchases when managing clients’ assets. This illustrates the firm’s flexibility, as long-term securities are generally held for at least a year, whereas short-term purchases are typically sold within a year of purchase.

So if you are more risk-averse, expect your portfolio to include more long-term purchases. On the other hand, if you’re open to risk in the hopes of high returns, short-term purchases might be more heavily utilized.

Independent Family Office, LLC

Independent Family Office, LLC is the most high-net-worth-centric firm on this list. In fact, the firm’s entire client base is comprised of individuals and families with a high net worth. So while the firm does not state a specific account minimum, it’s clear that its focus is on high-net-worth clients.

The three-advisor team at this fee-only firm is responsible for $405 million in client assets under management (AUM). Unfortunately, the list of advisory certifications for these employees is unavailable.

Independent Family Office, LLC Background

Managing member W. Michael Reickert is the sole principal owner of Independent Family Office. The firm has been in business since 2005.

Investment supervisory services at this firm include asset allocation planning, risk tolerance assessment, tax liability planning, cash flow projections and more. On the other hand, financial planning is much more open and revolves around tax planning, charitable giving planning, retirement planning, estate planning and risk management.

Independent Family Office, LLC Investing Strategy

Independent Family Office isn’t shy about using a wide range of securities when investing client assets. In fact, according to its Form ADV, the firm considers investing in exchange-traded funds (ETFs), equities, corporate bonds, mutual funds, U.S. government securities, options contracts, municipal bonds and CDs.

Not all of the above investments will make the cut into your portfolio. Instead, your risk tolerance, time horizon and other applicable factors will determine the makeup of your portfolio.

Bender Lane Advisory, LLC

Bender Lane Advisory, LLC

No firm on this list has more certifications than Bender Lane Advisory, LLC: The firm’s staff of six advisory employees each boast a certified public accountant (CPA) designation, along with one certified financial planner (CFP). In total, this fee-only firm has $371 million in assets under management (AUM).

Bender Lane is another firm focused on working with high-net-worth individuals and families, as almost 85% of its 53-member client base is made up of these accounts. The firm also offers its services to businesses and charitable organizations. There is no minimum initial investment at this firm.

Bender Lane Advisory, LLC Background

Daniel J. Rutnik, Bender Lane Advisory’s founder and sole owner, spent 20 years working as an account manager prior to opening this firm in 2003. Today, Rutnik holds two titles at the company: president and chief compliance officer (CCO).

The firm has an extremely detailed financial services suite that includes comprehensive investment reporting, asset allocation selection and monitoring, estate planning, income tax planning, family philanthropy planning, family financial education, cash flow planning, bill pay and risk management.

Bender Lane Advisory, LLC Investing Strategy

Rather than institute a “one size fits all” approach, Bender Lane Advisory will create a separate investment strategy for each client it works with. When you first become a client, you and your advisor will speak about what’s most important to you, like your tolerance for risk, income needs and financial goals.

Once this information is clear, an investment policy statement, or IPS, will be drawn up for you. This document will then determine how your assets are allocated, when they should be rebalanced and more.

Curran Wealth Management

Curran Wealth Management

With 10 financial advisors to its name, Curran Wealth Management has the second-largest advisory staff on this list. However, this group only includes one certified financial planner and one chartered financial analyst (CFA). The firm is known to work with individuals with and without a high net worth, businesses, pension and profit-sharing plans and charitable organizations.

The minimum account sizes at this firm vary depending on the services you’re looking for, with the following fee schedule:

  • Portfolio management accounts: $250,000
  • Wrap-fee accounts: $250,000
    • Equity wrap-fee accounts below $125,000: $2,500 minimum annual fee
    • Balanced wrap-fee accounts below $143,000: $2,500 minimum annual fee
  • Institutional accounts: $3,000,000, with a minimum annual fee of $15,000 to $22,500

This fee-based firm employs advisors that can earn commissions when they sell certain insurance products, which has the potential to be a conflict of interest. Regardless, the firm is a fiduciary and is therefore legally bound to act in your best interest. Additionally, this firm is the only one on this list to include performance-based fees in its fee schedule.

Curran Wealth Management Background

Thomas J. Curran founded Curran Wealth Management in 2004, and currently acts as CEO and lead portfolio manager. He runs the firm with president and chief investment officer Kevin T. Curran, and the duo have about 60 years of combined experience managing client assets. Thomas Curran is the firm’s sole owner.

The firm splits its services into investment management and financial planning offerings. The former involves investing assets according to the firm’s overarching philosophy, whereas financial planning is more goal-based. Some examples of this are retirement planning, education cost planning, tax preparation services, insurance analysis and more.

Curran Wealth Management Investing Strategy

When you become a client of Curran Wealth Management, your advisor will go over your personal risk tolerance, time horizon, investment goals and income needs. Based on this all-important information, the firm will throw together an asset allocation that fits what you’re looking for. When it comes to specific investments, Curran normally utilizes equities, bonds, warrants, commercial paper, CDs, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), money market accounts and more.

Capital Financial Planning, LLC

Capital Financial Planning, LLC

For a firm with under $300 million in assets under management (AUM), Capital Financial Planning, LLC has a rather large client base of more than 1,000 clients. The vast majority of these are individuals beneath the high-net-worth threshold. The fee-based firm also provides advisory services to high-net-worth individuals, pension and profit-sharing plans, businesses and charitable organizations.

There is no minimum needed to work with Capital Financial Planning. Of the 15 advisors here, only one holds a certified financial planner (CFP) designation. Some of these advisors can sell insurance products and securities on a commission basis, which represents a potential conflict of interest. The firm is still a fiduciary, though.

Capital Financial Planning, LLC Background

Capital Financial Planning was originally opened in 2003, but it achieved status as a registered investment advisor (RIA) in 2016. President and CEO Todd Slingerland founded the firm and remains its president and CEO.

Long-term investment management and financial planning services are available through this firm. While investment management is fairly straightforward, financial planning encompasses retirement planning, investment planning, personal savings planning, education funding planning and more.

Capital Financial Planning, LLC Investing Strategy

Capital Financial Planning believes long-term investing is the safest route to solid returns. More specifically, this long-term angle means the firm prefers to leave investments in a client’s portfolio for at least a year at a time. Should your income needs or rebalancing call for it, though, the firm may sell securities before you reach that mark.

AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC

AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC

AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC is a fee-based firm that has five financial advisors managing $224 million in client assets. Of this five-person group, three are certified financial planners (CFPs).

Most of AllSquare’s funds belong to high-net-worth individuals, but non-high-net-worth individuals comprise the majority of its client base. The firm also maintains relationships with pension and profit-sharing plans and charitable organizations. There is no minimum needed to become a client here.

Some advisors at this firm can make commissions off the sale of specific insurance products or securities. While this has the potential to be a conflict of interest, the firm is a fiduciary and must act in its clients’ best interests at all times.

AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC Background

AllSquare Wealth Management has been providing advisory services since 2010. Principals Douglas J. Bauer and Daniel D. Bauer own the firm and boast a combined 56 years of experience in the financial services industry.

Financial planning services at this firm cover retirement income projections, financial statement development, income tax planning, college education funding, existing investment analysis, risk management review and more. If you’d prefer a more general approach, the firm offers investment management as well.

AllSquare Wealth Management, LLC Investing Strategy

In its Form ADV, AllSquare Wealth Management states that its strategy is “based on the underlying premise that publicly traded financial markets are efficient and that any attempt to distinguish attractive from unattractive securities is futile.” The firm will work to develop a specific asset allocation for you that features passively-managed securities, such as exchange-traded funds (ETFs), open-ended mutual funds and individual treasury securities.

Should your asset allocation stray from its target, the firm will rebalance your portfolio as needed. The same may be done if your overall investing goals shift at all.

Arista Advisory Group, LLC

Arista Advisory Group, LLC

Arista Advisory Group, LLC has $172 million in client assets under management (AUM). The firm employs four financial advisors, with two of them being certified financial planners (CFPs). This is a fee-only operation.

There are nearly 10x as many individual clients at this firm than their high-net-worth counterparts. Charitable organizations and pension and profit-sharing plans also hold accounts at this firm. Arista Advisory does not have a minimum investment needed to become a client.

Arista Advisory Group, LLC Background

Having been established in 2016, Arista Advisory Group is the youngest firm on this list. Managing partner and chief compliance officer (CCO) Gerald Max Schwartz both principally owns the firm and founded it. Schwartz is a true veteran of the financial services industry, having worked in financial services for an astounding 42 years.

If you subscribe to portfolio management services at Arista Advisory, you’ll receive asset allocation planning, investment strategy customization and regular portfolio monitoring. Financial planning clients will have access to retirement planning, college fund planning, debt/credit planning, tax planning, life insurance analysis and investment planning.

Arista Advisory Group, LLC Investing Strategy

For the most part, Arista Advisory Group tends to use long-term trading strategies during its investment process. What this really means is that the firm looks to make investments in securities that it will ideally hold onto for at least one year. This approach is intended to reduce transaction costs and keep your returns more stable.

Arista Wealth Advisors, Ltd.

Arista Wealth Advisors, Ltd.

Arista Wealth Advisors has one certified financial planner (CFP) across its three-advisor staff. This team handles nearly $138 million in client assets, which belongs to a collection of individuals, high-net-worth individuals and pension and profit-sharing plans. The firm does not impose a minimum.

Arista Wealth is a fee-only firm.

Arista Wealth Advisors, Ltd. Background

Arista Wealth Advisors was formed in 1988, making it the lone firm on this list that came into existence prior to the current millennium. President Timothy E. Casserly founded the firm, though he now shares ownership of it with vice president Karin J. Lopez.

Investment supervisory services are available at Arista, but most of what it does revolves around financial planning. To be specific, its advisors deal with insurance needs analysis, retirement planning strategies, income tax planning, estate planning and wealth preservation, cash flow analysis and more.

Arista Wealth Advisors, Ltd. Investing Strategy

Arista Wealth chooses to focus on the ratio of securities in your portfolio rather than individual security selection. This asset allocation-based approach dictates that the full composition of a portfolio is a major determinant in terms of both return and risk. In addition to this, the firm will look to diversify your assets across multiple asset classes and market sectors.

How Many Years $1 Million 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 cost of living in retirement there.

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

Methodology SmartAsset calculated the average cost of living for retirees in the largest U.S. cities. Using that calculation, we determined how many years $1 million would last in retirement in each major city.

First, we looked at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the average annual expenditures of seniors throughout the country. 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.

We assumed the $1 million would grow at a real return (interest minus inflation) of 2%, reflecting the typical return on a conservative investment portfolio. Finally, we divided $1 million by the sum of each of those annual numbers to determine how long $1 million would last in each of the cities in our study.

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