Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Knoxville, Tennessee
With so many firms to consider, it can be hard to find a financial advisor. To narrow down your options, SmartAsset created this list of the top Knoxville financial advisor firms. We researched the Knoxville-area firms to bring you information on their investment approaches, qualifications and more, so you can more easily determine which firm might be right for you.
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|Rank||Financial Advisor||Assets Managed||Minimum Assets||Financial Services||More Information|
|1||Patriot Investment Management Group Inc. Find an Advisor||$1,610,714,866||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|2||Rather & Kittrell, Inc. Find an Advisor||$1,271,370,168||$500,000|| || |
|3||Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners, LLC Find an Advisor||$632,145,648||Varies based on account type|| || |
Minimum AssetsVaries based on account type
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|4||PYA Waltman Capital, LLC Find an Advisor||$1,017,643,452||$500,000|| || |
|5||Proffitt & Goodson Inc. Find an Advisor||$614,630,565||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|6||WMG Financial Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$461,233,328||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|7||Asset Planning Corporation Find an Advisor||$326,564,839||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|8||NBZ Investment Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$301,401,640||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|9||The Nalls Sherbakoff Group, LLC Find an Advisor||$238,507,962||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|10||Visionary Horizons, LLC Find an Advisor||$206,816,746||$250,000|| || |
What We Use in Our Methodology
To find the top financial advisors in Knoxville, we first identified all firms registered with the SEC in the city. Next, we filtered out firms that don't offer financial planning services, those that don't serve primarily individual clients and those that have disclosures on their record. The qualifying firms were then ranked according to the following criteria:
- AUMFirms with more total assets under management are ranked higher.
- Individual Client CountFirms who serve more individual clients (as opposed to institutional clients) are ranked higher.
- Clients Per AdvisorFirms with a lower ratio of clients per financial advisor are ranked higher.
- Age of FirmFirms that have been in business longer are ranked higher.
All information is accurate as of the writing of this article. This list may include firms that have a business relationship with SmartAsset, in which SmartAsset is compensated for lead referrals. Such relationships have no impact on our rankings, and firms are included and ranked based strictly on the above criteria.
Patriot Investment Management Group Inc.
Patriot Investment Management Group ranks first on our Knoxville list. The firm's advisory staff holds various financial certifications, such as the certified financial planner (CFP), charterd retirement plan specialist (CRPS), certified public accountant (CPA) and chartered financial analyst (CFA) designations.
The fee-only firm serves individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pension and profit-sharing plans, trusts, estates, charitable organizations, corporations and other business entities. It does not require a minimum account size to open an account.
Fees for portfolio management are based on a percentage of a client's assets under management. Financial planning services may be provided on a hourly or fixed fee basis.
Patriot Investment Management Group Background
Patriot Investment Management Group has been providing investment advisory services since 1992. Patriot is principally owned by Brad Bower, the firm’s president and CEO. In addition to this list, Patriot also appears our rankings of the top financial advisor firms in the state.
The advisory describes itself as "quarterback" for its clients, coordinating efforts between its accountants, attorneys and any other professionals with whom the firm works. The firm offers asset management, plus financial planning and wealth management. The latter may include:
- Financial planning
- Investment management?
- Estate strategies
- Insurance analysis
- Disability income insurance
- Life and health insurance
- Long-term care insurance
- Retirement planning
- Tax planning
- Philanthropic giving
- Cash flow management
- Debt management
- Educational funding
Patriot Investment Management Group Investment Strategy
Like many other firms, Patriot Investment Management Group tailors its advice to fit the financial situations of its clients. The firm's investment process begins with the identification of a client's risk tolerance, goals and objectives. Next it creates a plan based on that information.
When researching and selecting investments, the firm employs a combination of fundamental and cyclical methods of analysis. While former involves analyzing individual companies and their industry groups to measure their true value, the latter relies on evaluating recurring price patterns and trends.
Notably, the firm says that tax efficiency isn't one of its primary considerations when constructing client portfolios. It recommends that its clients consult with a tax professional before and during the investment process.
Rather & Kittrell, Inc.
Rather & Kittrell is a fee-based firm that works with individuals, families, businesses, banks and pension and profit-sharing plans. Some of its individual clients are high-net-worth individuals, but the majority are not. The firm has an account minimum of $500,000.
The advisory has a number of advisors on staff who hold various professional certifications including the certified financial planner (CFP), accredited investment fiduciary (AIF), certified investment management analyst (CIMA) and certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA) designations.
Rather & Kittrell advisors may receive commissions when recommending or selling insurance products to its clients. Some of the firm's associates are also registered representatives of a broker-dealer, and they may limit their securities recommendations to those offered or approved by that broker-dealer. The firm may also earn commissions from certain trades in client portfolios. While these all represent potential conflicts of interest, the firm has a fiduciary duty to put its clients' best interests before its own.
Rather & Kittrell is also ranked among the top firms in the state of Tennessee by SmartAsset.
Rather & Kittrell Background
Rather & Kittrell was founded in 2000 as a “two-desk business.” The SEC-registered firm is wholly owned by RK Holdings, Inc., which in turn is principally owned by the firm's co-founders, Lytle Rather and Christian Kittrell. Jeff Hall, Greg McMurry and Tim Eichhorn are minority owners of RK Holdings, Inc.
The practice offers wealth management services, encompassing investment management, estate planning, tax mitigation, asset protection and charitable giving. The firm also offers financial planning services outside of its portfolio management services, guiding clients on matters such as budgeting, insurance planning, retirement planning and death and disability planning.
Rather & Kittrell Investment Strategy
Rather & Kittrell tailors its investment advice to clients' unique needs. So like many firms, its wealth management process begins with personal consultations during which the advisor establishes a client's investment objectives, current financial situation, risk tolerance, time horizon, tax situation and liquidity needs.
Based on that information, Rather & Kittrell determines an appropriate asset allocation. For its discretionary accounts, the firm typically relies on its model allocations, which offer different risk profiles that range from a focus on preserving capital to achieving aggressive growth. The firm says that its core investment strategy consists of "globally diversified, multi-asset class model portfolios designed to deliver expected long-term returns within well-defined ranges of risk." In accordance with modern portfolio theory's assertion that the markets are efficient, the firm primarily uses passive investments in entire asset classes, including managed mutual funds and exchange-traded funds.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners, LLC
Next on our list of the top financial advisors in Knoxville is Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners (TVAMP). This fee-based firm primarily serves individuals, including a small percentage of high-net-worth individuals. The firm also works with pension and profit-sharing plans, as well as charitable organizations.
A minimum of $100,000 is typically required to open an account, though certain strategies may have different minimums. TVAMP charges an asset-based fee for portfolio management and also offers a wrap fee program through LPL Financial's Strategic Wealth Management plaform. The firm also has a $300 minimum fee for financial planning and consulting services.
As a fee-based firm, TVAMP is also a licensed insurance agency. Its employees may work as insurance agents, and they are also representatives of LPL Financial. In these roles, they may earn commissions. Additionally, the firm includes solicitation fees from other investment advisory firms in its fee structure. However, the firm and its employees are bound by their fiduciary duty, so clients can rest assured that the advice they receive is in their best interest.
The team includes certified financial planners (CFPs), an accredited asset management specialist (AAMS) and one chartered retirement planning counselor (CRPC). Notably, the firm's investment advisor representatives may be either employees or independent contractors.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners Background
Founded in 2011, TVAMP is owned by managing members Jeffrey B. Foster, Charles J. Sweat and Scott B. Foster.
The firm offers investment management, including through several advisory programs sponsored by broker-dealer LPL Financial, LLC, as well as financial planning and consulting services. Advice can cover investment planning, retirement planning, insurance planning, education planning, portfolio review and divorce financial consulting. The firm also provides pension consulting services to both plan sponsors and individual participants. It occasionally hosts seminars and educational workshops on topics like college planning and retirement planning.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners Investment Strategy
The investment management process at TVAMP begins with honest discussions. These lead to the development of an investment strategy focused on actively managing risk according to a client's financial goals. From there, the firm researches investment options using a range of methods of analysis, including charting, cyclical, fundamental and technical analysis. A client's asset allocation is then implemented, primarily with mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
The firm regularly monitors and rebalances a client’s investments as needed. When markets are up, it says it strives to manage risk. It shifts its focus to asset protection during market downturns.
PYA Waltman Capital, LLC
PYA Waltman Capital is a fee-based advisory firm, meaning it earns income from sources other than just management fees. The firm's advisory team includes four certified financial planners (CFPs), three certified public accountants (CPAs), one chartered financial analyst (CFA) and a financial paraplanner qualified professional (FPQP).
The firm works with individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations and corporations. PYW Waltman Capital requires a minimum account size of $500,000 for asset managment and financial planning.
PYA Waltman Capital Background
PYA Waltman Capital was established in 2005, and its principal owners are J. William Waltman Jr. and Douglas Yoakley.
The firm offers investment supervisory services, investment management services, retirement plan consulting services and financial planning services. The latter may cover retirement planning, estate planning, insurance review and analysis, education funding planning and cash flow and net worth analysis.
PYA Waltman Capital Investment Strategy
When it comes to analyzing securities, PYA Waltman relies most heavily on fundamental analysis, which involves assessing the economic wellbeing of a company or financial entity instead of looking only at its price movements.
The firm typically offers advice on investment products including but not limited to mutual funds, index funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), limited partnerships, real estate investment trusts (REITs) and annuities.
Proffitt and Goodson Inc.
Proffitt & Goodson is a fee-only firm working mostly with individual clients, the majority of whom have a high-net-worth. The firm also works with several institutional clients, including pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and corporations. The recomended account minimum is $1 million, though there is no set account minimum.
Fees for asset management are charged at a flat rate of 1.00% of the total assets under management. Fees may be negotiable. Wealth planning is billed at an hourly rate, generally between $300 and $400. Pension consulting is charged at a flat rate of 0.50% of assets under management.
The team members have a number of credentials, including the chartered financial analyst (CFA) and certified public accountant (CPA) designations.
As a fee-only firm, advisors at Proffitt & Goodson do not sell insurance or securities. The sole source of the firm's revenue is the advisory fees that clients pay.
Proffitt & Goodson Background
Proffitt & Goodson was founded in 1986 by Jim Proffitt and David Goodson. The principal shareholders are as follows:
- David Goodson, managing director and CIO
- Neil Goodson, managing director, portfolio managemer and chief compliance officer
Services offered at the firm include money management, financial planning and corporate retirement plan advising.
Proffitt & Goodson Investment Strategy
Diversification is at the heart of the strategy at Proffitt & Goodson. Advisors look to build portfolios that are allocated across different asset classes. They also don't try to time the market, believing it to be generally be unproductive. Long-term investing is preferred, and taxes are always taken into consideration.
WMG Financial Advisors, LLC
WMG Financial Advisors is a fee-based firm, so despite advisors being able to earn commissions from the sale of financial products, the firm is still a fiduciary ogbligated to act in the best interests of clients. There is no set account minimum at WMG and clients are mostly non-high-net-worth individuals. Institutional clients of the firm include pension and profit-sharing plans, pooled investment vehicles and charitable organizations.
Asset management fees are based on a client's percentage of assets under management with a maximum fee of 2%. Financial planning fees are charged at a fixed rate between $1,500 and $10,000. Some advisors at the firm may earn commissions for selling securities. This may present a conflict of interest, but all advisors must act in the best interest of the client.
WMG Financial Advisors Background
WMG Financial Advisors was founded in 2004. The principal owner is Dieter William Bergner. Services offered include portfolio management, asset selection, regular portfolio monitoring, retirement plan consulting, financial planning selection of other advisors, retirement planning, education planning and life insurance.
WMG Financial Advisors Investment Strategy
Modern portfolio theory is the foundation of WMG's investing strategy. This looks to maximize a portfolio's expected return based on a level of risk tolerance, or to minimize risk given an expected return. Long-term trading is the principal strategy used by advisors at WMG. This means that the firm will look to hold onto client investments for at least a year at a time.
Asset Planning Corporation
In business since 1975, Asset Planning Corporation is the oldest financial advisory firm on our list. This fee-only practice does not impose an account minimum and currently works solely with individuals and high-net-worth individuals. For the past 40 years, the firm says it has specialized in serving healthcare professionals, including family physicians, nurse practitioners, healthcare executives, hospital administrators, dentists and veterinarians.
However, the firm also offers its services to pension and profit-sharing plans, trusts, estates, businesses and non-profit organizations.
The Asset Planning team features advisors who hold the certified financial planner (CFP), certified kingdom advisor (CKA) and financial paraplanner qualified professional (FPQP) designations.
Asset Planning Corporation Background
Asset Planning Corporation was founded in 1975 by P. Kemp Fain Jr. Today, the firm is principally owned by Joseph Ottaviano, an advisor who holds the CFP and CKA certification. Suzanne Hornick, a CFP on staff, and Carol Ottaviano own minority interests in the business.
Asset Planning Corporation offers wealth management and related advisory services. The firm's financial planning services may encompass areas including investment strategy, financial independence/retirement planning, education funding, insurance, taxes and estate planning.
Asset Planning Corporation Investment Strategy
With its portfolio management services, Asset Planning Corporation aims to maximize clients' returns while keeping their goals and risk tolerance in mind. The firm uses strategic asset allocations that emphasize diversification. Typically, it invests its clients' assets in no-load mutual funds and ETFs, but it may also use certificates of deposit (CDs), annuities or individual bonds.
Asset Planning Corporation says that it reviews client portfolios at least quarterly and makes adjustments as needed. It contacts clients at least annually to review their portfolios and financial plans.
NBZ Investment Advisors, LLC
NBZ Investment Advisors is the next firm on our list of Knoxville's top financial advisors. This firm doesn't have a huge client base, and of the clients it does serve, almost every single one is an individual investor. The firm works with slightly more individuals than high-net-worth individuals. The firm's insitutional clients currently include pensions and profit sharing plans.
NBZ is a fee-only advisor, so you won't need to worry about a conflict of interest arising from advisors selling financial products for commissions. Its revenue comes solely from the fees that its clients pay for advisory services. Those fees are based on percentage of a client's assets under management. Consulting services are typically offered for an hourly fee. The firm does not have a set account minimum balance requirement.
NBZ's small advisory team includes the certified financial planner (CFP) and certified public accountant (CPA) designations.
NBZ Investment Advisors Background
NBZ Investment Advisors was founded in 1995, making it one of the older firms on our list. It became an SEC-registered investment advisor in 2003. It is currently principally owned by Richard I. Zivi Jr.
All of NBZ's assets are managed on a discretionary basis, meaning advisors have full control over trades and transactions. The firm provides its clients with holistic investment portfolio management services along with financial consulting and retirement plan advisory services.
NBZ Investment Advisors Investment Strategy
NBZ Investment Advisors works with clients to develop tailored investment strategies that address their individual interests as retail investors. Advisors at the firm meet with clients on an ongoing basis to make sure they fully understand each client's tolerance for risk, liquidity needs and any other relevant financial information.
When it comes to investing client assets, the firm primarily uses stocks, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), certificates of deposit (CDs), municipal securities and government securities. Advisors primarily uses methods of strategic allocation and a model portfolio called NBZ Index Plus, which seeks to outperform the Dow Jones US Large-Cap Index.
The Nalls Sherbakoff Group, LLC
The Nalls Sherbakoff Group is a fee-only firm that is not affiliated with any insurance agencies or broker-dealers. Its clients are individuals, and high-net-worth individuals, although the firm is also open to working with pension and profit-sharing plans, trusts, estates, charitable organizations, corporations and other business entities. This firm does not require a set account minimum to open or maintain an account.
The Nalls Sherbakoff team includes designations such as certified financial planner (CFP), retirement income certified professional (RICP), and certified public accountant/personal financial specialist (CPA/PFS).
The Nalls Sherbakoff Group Background
The Nalls Sherbakoff Group was founded in 2013. The firm's principal owner is Donald Nalls, who serves as a financial planner. Prior to founding The Nalls Sherbakoff Group, Nalls was one of the co-founders of Patriot Investment Management, the top-rated firm on this list. Both Nalls and T. Lee Sherbakoff, the firm's other namesake (and a principal and financial advisor), are U.S. military veterans.
The Nalls Sherbakoff Group Investment Strategy
As is customary at many financial advisor firms, The Nalls Sherbakoff Group begins the portfolio management process with the establishment of a client's investment objectives, risk tolerance and any other relevant financial information. This informs the firm's investment approach. Nalls Sherbakoff says that it primarily offers advice on equity securities, corporate debt securities, mutual funds and ETFs. It may also advise clients on investments they held prior to opening an account with the firm.
Like Patriot Investment Management Group, Nalls Sherbakoff does not prioritize tax efficiency in its investment approach unless specifically requested by a client. For help with tax-loss harvesting and other tax-related issues, you'll need to consult a tax professional.
Visionary Horizons, LLC
Visionary Horizons is a fee-based advisory firm that works with individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pensions and profit sharing plans. The firm requires a $250,000 minimum to open and mantain an account.
The Visionary Horizons advisory team includes four certified financial planners (CFPs). However, as a fee-based practice, some advisors may earn commissions for selling third-party financial products or insurance, in addition to the asset-based fees that client pay. This creates a potential conflict of interest, since commissions can lead advisors to recommend certain products and services over others. Then again, Visionary Horizons has a fiduciary duty to always act in its clients' best interests.
Visionary Horizons Background
Founded in 2009, Visionary Horizons is principally owned by Roger E. Kiger, who himself holds the CFP designation. The firm offers both discretionary and non-discretionary portfolio management services, financial planning and consulting services, as well as qualified retirement plan advisory services.
Visionary Horizons Investment Strategy
Visionary Horizons tailors its investment advice to the needs and objectives of its individual clients. The firm mainly invests client assets in equity securities, corporate debt, municipal debt, certificates of deposit, exchange-traded funds, mutual funds, U.S. government securities and options. When suitable, Visionary Horizons advisors may use private placements and alternative investments.
As for selecting individual investments, the firm uses fundamental, technical and cyclical methods of analysis, as well as charting, to evaluate securities.