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CenterSquare Investment Management Review

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CenterSquare Investment Management

CenterSquare Investment Management is a global investment manager headquartered in the Philadelphia suburb of Plymouth Meeting. The firm is focused on providing real estate and infrastructure management services to institutional and private investors. Its account minimums start at $1 million, so the only individual investors the firm works with are high-net-worth individuals. 

As of March 2018, CenterSquare has $9.45 billion in assets under management. The firm's team of financial advisors and other investment professionals has an average of 28 years of experience.

CenterSquare Investment Management Background

CenterSquare Investment Management was founded in 1987. Until recently, the firm was a subsidiary of BNY Mellon Investment Management. In January 2018, BNY Mellon completed the sale of CenterSquare to private equity firm Lovell Minnick Partners and CenterSquare's management team.

When it was founded, the firm was focused on providing direct real estate investment management services to institutional investors. It's since expanded its offerings to include U.S. and global listed real estate and global listed infrastructure management services.

What Types of Clients Does CenterSquare Investment Management Accept?

CenterSquare works with institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals. Its institutional clients include:

  • Proprietary accounts
  • Banks or thrift institutions
  • Corporate pension and profit-sharing plans
  • Public/governmental pension plans
  • Taft-Hartley plans
  • 401(k) plans
  • Trusts
  • Charitable institutions
  • Foundations
  • Endowments
  • U.S. registered investment companies
  • U.S. private investment funds
  • UCITs
  • Other non-U.S. regulated funds and separate accounts
  • Other U.S. and international institutions

CenterSquare Investment Management Minimum Account Sizes

CenterSquare’s account minimums vary by strategy and investment vehicle. The lowest account minimum, required for the firm's pooled investment vehicles, is $1 million. A $5 million account minimum is required for U.S. Securities and Global Infrastructure strategies. The firm requires a $10 million account minimum for Global Securities and Global Ex-U.S. Securities strategies.

Services Offered by CenterSquare Investment Management

CenterSquare provides investment advisory services through both separate accounts and pooled investment vehicles. The firm is focused on actively managed real asset investment strategies, including listed real estate, private equity real estate and listed infrastructure.

CenterSquare Investment Management Investment Philosophy

CenterSquare’s investment approach is centered on the active management of real assets. Its portfolios are comprised of publicly traded real estate equity securities and publicly traded infrastructure equity securities. The firm says that it invests "substantially" in these asset classes and typically holds less than 5% in cash.

CenterSquare generally uses long-only investment strategies, and it lists the following as its primary strategies:

  • U.S. real estate securities
  • Global real estate securities
  • Global ex-U.S. real estate securities
  • Global infrastructure securities

The firm says that it employs the same investment approach across all of its strategies. This approach is comprised of three main parts: top-down research, bottom-up research and risk management. Top-down research analyzes the overall economy to evaluate investment opportunities, while bottom-up research zeroes in on a specific stock's potential value. The third part of its investment approach is focused on finding a balance between risk and return, which CenterSquare does by monitoring exposures across several measures.

Fees Under CenterSquare Investment Management

CenterSquare typically charges clients fees based on a percentage of assets under management. Although these fees are annualized, clients will be charged on a quarterly basis in arrears. The firm charges the following fee rates for its primary separate account strategies:

Assets U.S. Fee Rate Global / Global Ex-U.S. Fee Rate
First $10 million 0.70% 0.75%
Next $40 million 0.65% 0.75%
Next $50 million 0.55% 0.65%
In excess of $100 million 0.50% 0.60%

For its private funds, CenterSquare charges the following annual rates:

Assets Fee Rate
First $10 million 0.75%
Next $40 million 0.75%
Next $50 million 0.65%
In excess of $100 million 0.60%

In addition to these asset-based fees, CenterSquare may also charge certain qualified clients performance-based fees. These fees are only collected if a portfolio outperforms predetermined benchmarks within a certain period of time.

What to Watch out For

CenterSquare Investment Management’s services aren't accessible nor necessarily appropriate for the average investor, as the firm has high account minimums and a specialized focus on actively managed real estate and infrastructure strategies.

Prospective and current clients should also note that CenterSquare has a number of potential conflicts of interest. Certain employees on the firm's sales and client services team are registered representative of its affiliate, registered broker-dealer Foreside Fund Services. Foreside also provides compliance consulting services to CenterSquare. While CenterSquare won't necessarily receive additional compensation as a result of this affiliation, the firm that controls both CenterSquare and Foreside, Lovell Minnick Partners, may benefit. In addition to its ties to Foreside, CenterSquare's general counsel and deputy general counsel own a law firm and the firm may serve CenterSquare's clients.

The final thing to watch out for is the fact that CenterSquare may charge performance-based fees to select qualified clients. In certain instances, these fees are earned in addition to asset-based fees when a portfolio's performance exceeds a designated benchmark within a certain period of time. Performance-based fees have a mixed reputation in the industry because they can incentivize advisors to take higher risks to boost portfolio performance.

Disclosures

Neither CenterSquare Investment Management nor its employees have faced any disciplinary issues in the last 10 years.

Opening an Account With CenterSquare Investment Management

For more information about the firm and its services, you can reach CenterSquare at (610) 834-9500. CenterSquare also provides more direct lines of contact on its website's Contact Us page. There you can find email addresses and phone numbers for the appropriate contact for institutional investors, financial intermediaries and individual investors and private equity real estate acquisitions on the West Coast and East Coast.

Should you decide to work with CenterSquare, the firm requires each of its clients to sign a written investment agreement. This agreement grants the firm the authority to manage a client’s assets and also outlines the fees they'll be subject to.

Where Is CenterSquare Investment Management Located?

CenterSquare has its headquarters in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia. It has affiliated offices in Los Angeles, London and Singapore.

Tips for Choosing a Financial Advisor

  • Narrow down your search for a financial advisor by using a matching tool like SmartAsset’s SmartAdvisor. The program makes it easier to find a financial advisor who suits your needs. After you answer a series of questions about your financial situation and preferences, you’ll be matched with up to three registered investment advisors near you. 
  • Before hiring an advisor, make sure you do your research. You should interview multiple financial advisors before making a decision. Ask questions about their certifications and fee structure.

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