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BT Wealth Management Review

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BT Wealth Management

BT Wealth Management, LLC (BTWM) is a fee-only financial advisor that’s centrally located in Atlanta, Georgia, though it has a sister office in Savannah. BTWM has nearly $800 million in assets under management (AUM) across a seven-person team of advisors. Investment management is the principal service of the firm, though it does provide wealth management for its active investment advisory clients.

BT Wealth Management Background

Each of the six individuals on BT Wealth Management’s investment committee owns the firm, though none of them holds more than 25% of its shares. This ownership team includes managing partner and CIO Scott Craig and partners Jeffrey Call, Cliff Draughn, Clay McDaniel, Kenneth Thrasher and Win Walstad. BT has been in business since 2008.

BT Wealth Management boasts a solid number of advisory certifications for a firm with fewer than 10 financial advisors on staff. This group includes five certified financial planners (CFP), four certified public accountants (CPA), three chartered financial analysts (CFA), one certified investment management analyst (CIMA) and one individual certified in financial forensics (CFF).

What Types of Clients Does BT Wealth Management Accept?

Individuals and high-net-worth individuals make up the largest portion of BT Wealth Management’s client base. However, the firm typically works with businesses, estates, trusts, pension plans, profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and privately-offered pooled investment vehicles too.

BT Wealth Management Minimum Account Size

Most prospective clients of BT Wealth Management will need to have at least $1 million in investable assets prior to opening their account. Should you be interested in investing in BT’s private fund, the BT Opportunity Fund II, that requirement will drop to $250,000. The firm reserves the right to negotiate its account minimums as it deems necessary.

Services Offered by BT Wealth Management

BT Wealth Management’s premier advisory offerings are investment advising, wealth management and financial planning. Check out the firm’s full list of services:

  • Investment advisory services
    • Proprietary investment research
    • Customized discretionary investment management
    • Regular and investor-initiated rebalances and investment plan updates
  • Wealth management (for investment advisory clients)
    • Risk-adjusted general financial planning
    • Spending analysis and budget planning
    • Estate management and planning
    • Tax minimization
    • Income tax planning
    • Financial goals analysis
    • Insurance planning
    • End-of-life planning
    • Retirement planning
    • Investment management
  • General consulting
    • Project-based financial planning for a set period of time
    • New plan built for every client, taking into account:
      • Income
      • Expenses
      • Asset
      • Liabilities
      • Tax situation
      • Wills
      • Current investments
      • Employee benefit plan participation
      • Insurance policies
  • 401(k) services by BT’s partner, Capital Directions, LLC
    • Administrative support
    • Marketing management
    • Discretionary investment selection, portfolio models and monitoring
    • Sponsor support
      • Plan design and implementation
    • Participant support
      • Plan education
      • Investment education
    • Rebalances and reallocations
  • IRA rollovers
  • “BT Opportunity Fund II” pooled investment vehicle

BT Wealth Management Investment Philosophy

BT Wealth Management is a strong believer in having a strictly defined asset allocation for every client portfolio it constructs. What this does is allow your advisor to match your pre-specified risk tolerance with exact percentages that each applicable investment type will occupy within your portfolio. For example, someone who’s more risk-averse might have an abundance of bonds and other fixed-income securities. On the other hand, an individual who can stomach higher volatility in the interest of better returns will likely have many equities.

Although, BTWM will attempt to create a portfolio based on your investor profile, its overall investment ideology prefers a long-term approach. The firm states on its website that this predisposition comes from the fact that short-term, market-beating investing can sometimes leave portfolios open to “poor decision-making.” Beyond its base investment essentials, your advisor will also look to invest on a tax efficient basis.

Fees Under BT Wealth Management

Investment advisory services at BTWM are built on a negotiable, asset-based fee schedule. Each of these rates are charged quarterly in advance, even though they are shown in the annual percentages below. All of your fees will be listed in your advisory agreement prior to the beginning of your services. Standalone investment advisory accounts usually adhere to the first table, whereas investment advisory clients who subscribe to any wealth management services should stick to the second table.

Investment Advisory Fees
Portfolio Value Annual Fee
First $2MM 1.00%
Next $3MM 0.75%
Over $5MM 0.50%

 

Wealth Management Program Fees
Portfolio Value Annual Fee
First $5MM 1.00%
Over $5MM 0.50%

Occasionally, BT Wealth Management will include performance-based fees within a client’s advisory agreement. These charges vary wildly, so BTWM does not provide any specific fee ranges.

Check out the table below to see how BT’s fees for its asset management services compare to those at similar financial advisor firms. Note that these fees are only estimates, and actual costs may vary.

*Fee estimates only consider the maximum base fees for the services each firm provides. You may also pay manager fees and other fees, which can vary in amount. **All figures are based on median fee levels according to Bob Veres' 2017 Planning Profession Fee Survey. The above estimates solely take into account AUM-only fees. Total costs will likely be higher due to additional expenses.
Estimated Fee Comparison*
Your Assets BT Wealth Management Investment Advisory Fees National Median Advisory Fees**
$500K n/a (below minimum required) $5,000
$1MM $10,000 $8,500 - $10,000
$5MM $42,500 $25,000 - $32,500
$10MM $67,500 $50,000

What to Watch Out For

Some clients of BT Wealth Management may have performance-based fees included in their fee schedules. This incentive could cause a conflict of interest, as advisors may be inclined to institute riskier investment policies to try and induce higher return levels. It’s important to note, though, that this firm and its advisors are registered fiduciaries, which legally binds them to invest according to clients’ best interests at all times.

Disclosures

There are no legal or regulatory issues listed on BT Wealth Management’s SEC-filed Form ADV.

Opening an Account With BT Wealth Management

If you’re confident that you want to work with BT Wealth Management, you can reach each of the firm’s branches at the following phone numbers:

  • Atlanta: (770) 635-5000
  • Savannah: (912) 598-4032

Those who want to interface more with an advisor at the firm before making a decision can fill out the “Speak to a Professional” contact form on BTWM’s website to have one of its advisors call them directly.

Where Is BT Wealth Management Located?

Atlanta, Georgia is home to BT Wealth Management’s headquarters at Riverwood 200, 3300 Riverwood Parkway, Suite 1075. The firm’s second location is in Savannah on 24 Drayton Street, Suite 501.

Tips to Improve Your Financial Life

  • If you find yourself uncertain about decisions you’re making with your investments, a financial advisor could help you navigate this terrain. Finding the right financial advisor that fits your needs doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors that will help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
  • Having a specifically set investment plan is one of the best ways to ensure that every financial decision you make is done with purpose. But on smaller financial decisions, like your kitchen-counter economics, you can take matters into your own hands by setting up a budget. The process to develop a budget can be stressful, but SmartAsset’s budget calculator can simplify things significantly. Then you can find more money in your cash flow you might be able to devote toward investing.

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 the cost of living in retirement for that location.

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

Methodology To determine how long a $1 million nest egg would cover retirement costs in cities across America, we analyzed data on average expenditures for seniors, cost of living and investment returns.

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%. This reflects the typical return on a conservative investment portfolio. 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