Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Atlanta, Georgia
Sorting through the hundreds of financial advisor firms in Atlanta can be a daunting undertaking. So after painstaking research, we narrowed it down for you with this list of the top 10 financial advisor firms in Georgia’s capital.
|Rank||Financial Advisor||Assets Managed||Minimum Assets||Financial Services||More Information|
|1||Investment Research & Advisory Group, Inc. Find an Advisor||$7,044,547,844||$1,000,000|| || |
|2||Homrich Berg Wealth Management Find an Advisor||$6,985,243,185||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|3||Iron Capital Advisors, Inc. Find an Advisor||$4,838,057,218||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
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|4||Edge Capital Group, LLC Find an Advisor||$4,070,268,253||$5,000,000|| || |
|5||Brightworth, LLC Find an Advisor||$4,034,376,256||$1,000,000|| || |
|6||SignatureFD, LLC Find an Advisor||$3,911,278,567||$2,000,000|| || |
|7||Capital Directions, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,789,108,943||$150,000|| || |
|8||Berman Capital Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,719,354,669||$5,000,000|| || |
|9||Balentine, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,607,652,421|| |
| || |
|10||Montag Find an Advisor||$2,147,637,487||$3,000,000|| || |
How We Found the Top Financial Advisor Firms in Atlanta, Georgia
To narrow this list down to these 10 financial advisor firms in Atlanta, SmartAsset first gathered all the firms in the Atlanta metro area that are registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), as these firms are all bound by a fiduciary duty to act in their clients' best interest. Then, we eliminated any firms that had disciplinary issues, to ensure our list was only comprised of firms with clean records. We also cut firms that did not have financial planners on staff or that did not manage individual and high-net-worth individual accounts. From there, we sorted the firms accorded to assets under management. The firms here are ranked from highest assets under management to lowest. All information is accurate as of the writing of this article.
Investment Research & Advisory Group, Inc.
The Investment Research & Advisory Group, Inc. (IRA Group) draws from more than a decade of experience in the institutional advisory business to bring individuals private wealth management services. The firm can help clients address holistic financial planning around an array of topics like cash flow analysis and tax planning. It can also utilize proprietary research and portfolio management methods to manage an investment portfolio for individuals.
The majority of this firm's client pool consists of high-net-worth individuals and profit-sharing plans. For investment advisory services from the IRA Group, you’d need a minimum initial investment of $1 million.
Investment Research & Advisory Group Background
The IRA Group was founded in 1992. Today, it serves as a fee-only financial advisory firm. This means it charges fees for only its services. So it doesn’t earn commissions or other revenue from mutual fund companies, custodians or other entities for making certain recommendations. The firm exists on a fiduciary level and is obligated to always work in the best interests of its clients.
But despite the IRA Group’s long tenure and impressive AUM, its team currently does not contain certified financial planners (CFP). This framework may extend from the fact that the firm is more known for working with institutional clients and focusing on investment management. Nonetheless, the IRA Group states that it "furnishes advice to clients on matters not involving securities, such as financial planning matters, taxation issues and trust services that often include estate planning.”
Investment Research & Advisory Group Resources
The IRA Group aims to provide investment management services based on its institutional investment discipline. According to documents it has filed with the SEC, the firm’s investment philosophy is driven by the idea that asset-allocation strategy is a major driver of a portfolio’s risk and return profile.
Depending on your situation, yours may invest in some or all of the following: large-cap equity, mid-cap equity, small-cap equity, international equity, high-grade fixed-income, high-yield fixed-income, international fixed-income, cash equivalents, alternatives, real estate and commodities.
Homrich Berg Wealth Management
Homrich Berg Wealth Management has by far the most assets under management (AUM) of any firm on this list. It manages nearly $7 billion in assets.
The fee-only firm has several financially certified advisors on staff, including a number of certified financial planners (CFPs). In addition, Homrich Berg has five certified public accountants (CPAs), and five chartered financial analysts.
There's no minimum required to be a client of Homrich Berg Wealth Management. However, you may be charged a minimum fee if you have below $500,000 in investable assets.
Homrich Berg Wealth Management Background
The firm was formed in 1989 by David Homrich and Andy Berg upon the “core belief that investors deserve unbiased advice,” its website explains. Berg remains the firm’s main owner and he’s a principal at the firm.
Since Homrich Berg Wealth Management’s founding, it has continued to grow, adding a second office in Atlanta in 2008 and another in 2013. At Homrich Berg Wealth Management, each client is serviced by a team of three to four people. This includes a principal, a director or senior associate, an associate and a client care coordinator.
Homrich Berg Wealth Management Investment Strategy
The firm has an internal investments team responsible for providing updates on each asset class and the issues affecting portfolios.
While the firm’s portfolios include traditional investments in each asset class, it uses a wide range of investments that may extend to alternative investments. In some instances, the firm may create pooled access fund vehicles to give investors access to a diversified portfolio of alternative investments at no additional charge.
Iron Capital Advisors, Inc.
Iron Capital Advisors, Inc. takes the next spot on our list of the top financial advisors in Atlanta, Georgia. This firm works mainly with individual clients both with and without a high net worth. It also works with pensions and profit sharing plans. While there isn't a set account minimum if you're interested in working with Iron Capital Advisors, the firm may choose to impose one if they so choose.
This fee-only firm provides clients with a range of advisory services. As a fee-only firm, it does not receive commissions from third-party sources and is not subject to potential conflicts of interest like a fee-based firm might be.
Iron Capital Advisors Background
Iron Capital Advisors was founded in 2003. Charles E. Osborne is the firm's principal owner. He is a chartered financial analyst (CFA) and serves as the firm's co-founder and managing director. He has over two decades of investment experience. Osborne is the only financially certified employee on staff as an advisor at Iron Capital.
The firm manages assets on both a discretionary and non-discretionary basis. Services are typically comprehensive, as the firm looks to help with all aspects of a client's financial situation. However, services can be broken down between financial consulting and financial or investment management.
Iron Capital Advisors Investment Strategy
Iron Capital Advisors crafts their investment strategies based on the individual financial situation of each client. This includes developing client profiles that detail their circumstances, goals and tolerance for risk as well as their investment objectives and guidelines for how they'd like their assets managed.
The firm and its advisors continually monitor all client portfolios. They also make updates to client portfolios as they see fit and as clients communicate changes in preferences and financial situations to them. When choosing stocks, the firm takes into account over 3000 companies. They also perform top-down sector analysis. Portfolios typically consist of 20-30 stocks.
Edge Capital Group, LLC
According to official documents filed with the SEC, Edge Capital group’s individual client base consists almost entirely of those in the high-net-worth category. It’s not surprising considering you’d generally need a minimum account balance of $3 million to receive investment advisory services.
The firm aims to provide holistic wealth management services that consist of financial planning and investment management. Depending on your situation, the firm may invest your assets in mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), private investment funds or external managers of separately managed accounts.
Edge Capital Group Background
Edge was founded in 2007 as a limited liability company under the laws of Delaware. However, it’s currently based in Atlanta. In addition, the firm is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Focus Operating, LLC (Focus Operating), which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Focus Financial Partners, LLC (Focus LLC). It’s currently managed by Henry Jones, Bert Rayle, Will Skeean, Dennis Sabo and Elizabeth Mackie.
The Atlanta team features chartered financial analysts (CFA) and certified financial planners (CFP).
Edge Capital Group Investment Strategy
Edge’s mission is to provide its clients with a complete financial action plan that touches on every aspect of their financial wellness including strategic asset allocation, cash flow solutions and finding the right accounting and banking partners.
According to its website, Edge uses hedge funds “to serve as an investment tool minimizing investment risk, diversifying portfolios, and targeting reliable returns over time.” The firm’s website also features a Market Updates section offering financial news, quarterly outlooks and Edge’s proprietary research insights.
The team of advisors at Brightworth, LLC boasts an impressive array of expertise. The fee-only firm’s team consists of certified financial planners (CFPs), certified public accountants (CPAs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs), certified investment management analyst (CIMAs) and personal financial specialists (PFS).
The firm, which serves a majority of high-net-worth individuals, has had a 98% client retention rate since it began tracking it in 2000. To be a client, you’ll need $1 million in investable assets.
Brightworth, LLC Background
Brightworth, LLC was founded in 1997 under the name Polstra & Dardaman, LLC. It also does business under the name McGill Advisors, a division of the firm that has an office in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The firm’s portfolios may use separate stock and bond accounts, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and private investment strategies. The firm emphasizes a long-term perspective as the key to success, but it also keeps an eye on the investment markets to make adjustments as necessary to client portfolios.
Billed as the Brightworth difference, the firm lets its clients call anytime to talk to their advisors about their financial situation or simply to discuss an idea with an expert.
Brightworth, LLC Investment Strategy
Brightworth’s website is packed with helpful resources and information and the website’s intuitive and creative design makes it all very easy to find. Brightworth provides a quarterly market commentary and it also has an array of articles, which can be searched through by topic area. The firm compiles its highlight articles from the year in a 20-page publication called Bright Ideas.
There’s also an offering of videos, which illuminate the firm’s perspectives on topics like Brexit and President Trump’s impact on its investment thinking. The firm also hosts events.
Brightworth clients are provided with a Brightworth Performance Report, which tracks their investment portfolios from the outset. BrightView is the firm’s online portal for clients.
SignatureFD, LLC is the next financial advisory firm on our list of the top advisors in Atlanta, Georgia. You’ll need least $2 million in investable assets for SignatureFD to take you on as a client.
The fee-based firm is involved in a variety of other business activities. So while the advisors must by law look out for your best interest as fiduciaries, there could be times when the company could benefit from selling you a certain product. SignatureFD owns several private funds, for which it could earn compensation, and it is also an insurance broker/agent and a mortgage broker. The firm is also affiliated with a certified public accounting firm. Prospective clients should be sure to ask questions to ensure they fully understand how advisors and/or the company get paid if you purchase these products.
SignatureFD, LLC Background
Founded in 1997 by SignatureFD, LLC has many varied experts on staff. It has the most certified financial planners (CFPs) of any firm on this list. In addition, it employs certified public accountants (CPAs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and certified divorce financial analysts (CDFAs).
SignatureFD, LLC Investment Strategy
The firm takes a threefold approach to investment: maximize returns, minimize taxes and expenses and control risk through proper diversification. The firm primarily allocates client investment among mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). SignatureFD’s financial planning and investment management services are offered on a standalone basis for separate fees.
A unique feature of the firm is its distinct signature initiatives, which were designed to meet the needs of its diverse client groups. There’s SignatureEXEC, SignatureHEALTH, SignatureGENEROSITy, SignatureLAW, SignatureWOMEN and SignatureENTREPRENEUR. SignatureWOMEN, for instance, offers women a specialized approach toward meeting their financial goals by taking women’s unique challenges and needs into account. SignatureFD hosts a monthly event for its clients.
Capital Directions, LLC
To be a client of Capital Directions, you’ll need at least $150,000 in investable assets. The firm has a small team of wealth advisors. However, several of its advisors are certified financial planners (CFPs).
For investors wanting to plan for retirement, Capital Directions is worth considering. The firm has expertise in assisting clients with their company retirement plans.
Capital Directions, LLC Background
Capital Directions, LLC was founded in 1985 and it’s now a leading fee-only firm in the Southeast. It’s owned by its principals, Dennis Covington, N. Scott Pritchard and Terry P. Hartigan.
Capital Directions, LLC Investment Strategy
Capital Directions believes that emotions are the main thing standing between investors getting rewarded for a diversified, long-term portfolio. The firm thus views one of its main responsibilities to be serving as “the emotional barrier between clients and their money” to ensure there aren’t any “emotion-driven derivations” from their investment approach during periods of market extremes, the firm says on its website.
Capital Directions creates these well-diversified portfolios based on the modern portfolio theory (MPT) and the efficient-market hypothesis (EMH). The firm states that they don't chase performance or the latest fads in investment, instead opting to focus on diversifying across asset classes, minimizing costs and maximizing returns.
Berman Capital Advisors, LLC
Berman Capital Advisors is a fee-only firm that prioritizes wealth preservation. To be a client of the firm, you’ll need at least $5 million in investable assets. Balentine, LLC is the only other firm on this list with an account minimum that high.
The fee-only firm has a small team of investment advisors. This team includes certified financial planners (CFPs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and a certified public accountant (CPA). It’s also may collect performance-based fees.
In 2019, Financial Times named Berman Capital Advisors among the nation’s top 300 registered investment advisors.
Berman Capital Advisors, LLC Background
Berman Capital Advisors, LLC was established in 2010. The firm’s majority owner is its founder and CEO, Justin Berman. Before founding Berman Capital Advisors, Berman worked in senior management and leadership roles at financial institutions including Goldman Sachs and Arthur Andersen.
At Berman, advisors invest side-by-side with clients. The firm mainly uses mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in its individual, customized portfolios that are created with an eye toward minimizing risk and protecting capital.
The firm relies heavily on research to construct its portfolios. Berman Capital Advisors analyzes risk and return, fund teams and structures, and it performs on-site visits and interviews to evaluate managers.
Berman Capital Advisors, LLC Community Involvement
A unique feature of the firm is its community involvement. Berman Capital Advisors states that the company actively advocates for local causes and offers grants to charities whose causes align with its goals.
Balentine, LLC, has one of the highest account minimums out of these Atlanta firms. To be a client of Balentine, you’ll need at least $5 million in investable assets.
The fee-only firm, whose investment strategy is centered up on risk management, offers a decent array of expertise, though many firms on this list boast more certifications. They include certified financial planners (CFPs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and certified public accountants (CPA).
Balentine, LLC Background
Balentine was formed in 2009, and it began operating in January 2010. The firm is solely owned by Balentine Partners LLC, which is owned by officers or employees of Balentine. The majority is owned by the chairman and chief executive officer and his family trust.
Balentine has a dedicated onboarding team and system in place to make the introductory phase easier for new clients, according to the firm. The company believes that no two clients’ portfolios should look the same. Success is measured not against a benchmark but against clients’ financial roadmaps, which are designed with their unique goals, needs and aspirations in mind.
Unlike most firms, Balentine doesn’t view its client portfolios as a division of assets among primary asset classes. Instead, it divides assets into building blocks, which are divided up according to risk level. The firm’s entire investment model is essentially built around managing risk, with an eye toward cost-effectiveness and tax efficiency.
Balentine, LLC Resources
Balentine’s full-time onboarding team is far from the only resource it provides clients. The firm provides portfolio and market commentaries and annual reports and forecasts.
The firm also provides clients with online access tools to keep tabs on their account summaries, trades and tax statements and to view their quarterly Balentine performance reports.
Montag was founded in 1982, making it one of the oldest firms on this list. The fee-based financial firm requires a minimum of $3 million in investable assets.
Montag has just one certified financial planner, which is the least of any firm on this list. This likely has to do with the fact that while clients may ask Montag to draft up a financial plan, the firm is primarily focused on investment management.
Founded in 1982, Montag is principally owned by the firm’s CEO, Edward Montag, its president and CIO, John Montag. Its founder is L. Anthony Montag. As evidenced by the firm’s ownership, Montag remains a family operation.
Montag states that the portfolio managers at the firm work as a team. The company doesn’t employ any third-party investment management professionals, opting instead for a direct client relationship. Though financial planning is done on an elective basis at Montag, the firm does note clients’ goals, needs and risk tolerance in a “Memo-to-File” and their investment goals and guidelines in “Investment Objectives.”
Montag portfolios use individual common stocks, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and tax-exempt fixed income investments. The firm primarily relies on fundamental and technical analysis to select stocks.
Montag’s sleekly designed website offers an abundance of resources. The firm has a blog that addresses financial questions and doles out tips and information. A “Deeper Dive” section takes a more in-depth look at specific topics. The firm sends out a quarterly newsletter and the first quarter’s newsletter features a market commentary.