Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Michigan
Handing over your assets to a financial advisor to manage them can be nerve-wracking. After all, you want to ensure you find an advisor who is well-equipped to do the job and meet your needs. So we’ve done the heavy lifting for you by determining the top financial advisor firms in Michigan after painstaking research. To figure out which firm suits you, take a look at their fee schedules, investment strategies, offered services and more below. The SmartAsset financial advisor matching tool can take care of this process for you by matching you with financial advisors in your area.
|Rank||Financial Advisor||Assets Managed||Minimum Assets||Financial Services||More Information|
|1||Plante Moran Financial Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$14,975,024,631||$500,000|| || |
|2||Rehmann Capital Advisory Group, LLC Find an Advisor||$3,892,000,000||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|3||Schwartz & Co. Find an Advisor||$3,483,325,035||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
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|4||FormulaFolio Investments, LLC Find an Advisor||$3,186,961,462|| |
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|5||Telemus Capital, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,784,769,620||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|6||Zhang Financial LLC Find an Advisor||$2,783,028,083||$1 million|| || |
Minimum Assets$1 million
|7||Advance Capital Management, Inc. Find an Advisor||$2,605,904,270||Varies based on account type|| || |
Minimum AssetsVaries based on account type
|8||Mainstay Capital Management, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,474,790,740||$200,000|| || |
|9||Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc. Find an Advisor||$1,940,481,868|| |
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|10||Retirement Income Solutions, Inc. Find an Advisor||$1,768,764,247||$500,000|| || |
How We Found the Top Financial Advisor Firms in Michigan
To make this list, a firm had to be based in Michigan and registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), as all SEC-registered firms are bound by fiduciary duty. This requires firms to act in clients’ best interests at all times. However, if a firm didn’t manage individual accounts, didn’t offer financial planning services or had disciplinary issues, our SmartAsset personal finance experts eliminated it from contention. The top firms that met these requirements are listed below, ordered from the most assets under management (AUM) to the least.
Plante Moran Financial Advisors, LLC
Plante Moran Financial Advisors, LLC has well over $14 billion in assets under management (AUM), which is almost $10 billion more than the second-ranking firm on this list. The firm principally does business in Southfield.
At $500,000, Plante Moran is tied for highest minimum account size on this list. The firm serves nearly equal parts individuals and high-net-worth individuals, though. Plante Moran says it specializes in working with individuals in the following industries: automotive, construction, manufacturing, not-for-profit, private equity, healthcare and real estate. It also provides family office services.
Plante Moran is a fee-based firm that employs certain advisors who sell insurance policies. While these advisors could earn commissions from sales, the firm is a registered fiduciary and therefore must act in your best interest no matter what.
Plante Moran Financial Advisors, LLC Background
Plante Moran Financial Advisors, LLC was established in 1977. It is part of a large network of accounting and consulting firms titled P&M Holding Group, LLP.
This firm has many services available for its clients, ranging from individual financial planning to institutional client services. Overall, though, the firm’s staple offerings are retirement planning, estate planning, tax planning, insurance consulting, business succession planning, tax preparations, employer retirement plan management and financial reviews.
Plante Moran Financial Advisors, LLC Client Experience
Before jumping into any specific financial plans, the advisors at Plante Moran will want to learn more about what you’re looking for in a client-advisor relationship. This is also the point at which your advisor will help you nail down your risk tolerance and any time horizon you might have in mind. Based on this information, the firm will draw up a formal investment policy statement that details your personal financial situation along with the strategy that the firm believes will help you reach your goals.
When it comes to strategy implementation, the firm is likely to invest your assets in exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds, separate account managers, hedge fund-of-fund managers and alternative investment vehicles. Once your plan is in place, your advisor will provide you with periodic updates on current performance and any proposed changes or rebalancings.
Rehmann Capital Advisory Group, LLC
Rehmann Capital Advisory Group is a fee-based financial advisor firm located in Lansing with more than $3.89 million in assets under management (AUM). The firm has 35 advisors on staff. The Lansing office, which is listed as the home of the wealth management division, includes four certified public accountants (CPA), one certified financial planner (CFP) and one chartered global management accountant (CGMA).
The firm advises both individuals and high-net-worth individuals. It also does business with institutional accounts, including pension or profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and other corporations. The firm does not have a minimum account size requirement or minimum fee, but some individual advisors may impose them. Asset management fees are paid based on a percentage of assets under management. Advisors may also sell you securities or insurance products. This is a potential conflict of interest, but the firm is still a fiduciary and must act in your best interest.
Rehmann Capital Advisory Group, LLC Background
Rehmann Capital Advisory Group has been in business since 2001. It is owned by parent company Rehmann Financial Group, LLC, which in turn is owned by Rehmann, LLC. No shareholder of the parent firm has more than 25% interest in the advisory business. The parent company is based in Troy, Michigan.
The following services are available for Rehmann clients:
- Financial planning
- Financial consulting
- Investment management
- Portfolio analysis
Rehmann Capital Advisory Group, LLC Investment Strategy
Your advisor at Rehmann will help you come up with a portfolio strategy that makes sense for you. Your asset allocation will vary based on your financial situation and goals, but will include equities, fixed income investments and alternative investments. Both individual securities and mutual fund shares may be used, depending on your preferences.
The firm uses a number of modes of analysis, including technical analysis and qualitative analysis, to decide which companies and other investments to choose for its clients.
Schwartz & Co.
Located in Bloomfield Hills, Schwartz & Co. is a fee-based firm managing more than $3.48 million. Most of the firm’s clients are individuals, though it also advises a good number of high-net-worth accounts. Schwartz’s institutional clients include pooled investment vehicles, pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations, state or municipal government entities and other corporations. There is no minimum account size requirement for Schwartz clients, though access to the pooled investment vehicle does require you to be an accredited investor and to invest at least $100,000.
Fees for advisory services are based on a percentage of assets under management. Some advisors at the firm are registered with a broker-dealer and may make commissions from selling securities. The firm does not charge an investment management fee on any money also subject to a commission. Fiduciary duty also requires that the firm act in the best interest of the client.
There are 17 advisors at the firm. The team includes two certified public accountants (CPAs) and one registered financial consultant (RFC).
Schwartz & Co. Background
Gregory J. Schwartz, Sr. founded the firm in 1976. It is 100% owned by parent company Schwartz Holdings, L.L.C. Gregory J. Schwartz still serves as chairman of the board and his five sons — Gregory, Jr., Walter, Joseph, Edward and Peter — are all officers and principals.
Services offered by the firm include:
- Risk/return evaluation
- Asset allocation monitoring
- Annual cost analysis
Schwartz & Co. Investment Strategy
Both short-term and long-term purchases are used by advisors at Schwartz. Diversification is also important. This is true both in terms of types of investments and in terms of style, class and market capitalization.
Fundamental analysis and cyclical analysis are used to make investment choices. This ensures that the intrinsic value of an investment is considered while also considering what patterns in the market may be causing values to rise and fall for different investments.
FormulaFolio Investments, LLC
No other firm on this list manages as many individual accounts as FormulaFolio Investments, LLC, which oversees more than 17,000 accounts. The majority of the accounts belong to individuals, with a small number held by high-net-worth individuals. The firm also works with estates, pension and profit-sharing plans, trusts, businesses and charitable organizations.
Set at just $25,000, this fee-only firm has one of the lowest account minimums on this list. One chartered financial analyst (CFA) and two certified financial planners (CFPs) are on the advisory staff at FormulaFolio, which placed as SmartAsset’s top financial advisor firm in Grand Rapids.
FormulaFolio has also ranked on the Inc. 500 for three straight years. In 2018, it was No. 385 and listed as the third fastest growing company in Michigan.
FormulaFolio Investments, LLC Background
Chief Investment Strategist Jason Wenk principally owns FormulaFolio Investments, LLC. He founded the firm in 2011. Wenk also owns, Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc., the ninth firm on this list.
The firm’s specialties are investment management, tax management, retirement planning and individual employer-sponsored retirement plan management. However, if you have financial planning needs that don’t fit into one of these categories, FormulaFolio can create a personalized strategy just for you.
FormulaFolio Investments, LLC Investing Strategy
FormulaFolio Investments takes a research-based approach to investing. Proprietary algorithms determine how this firm invests client assets. To customize the algorithm to your personal situation, the firm incorporates your financial goals, risk tolerance and current taxes.
Based on the findings of these algorithms, the firm will implement and monitor your plan. More specifically, FormulaFolio will determine specific asset allocations, select money managers and provide ongoing management and rebalancings.
Telemus Capital, LLC
Telemus Capital, LLC is a bit more exclusive than some of the other top firms on this list, as it serves less than 1,000 individual clients. For reference, the rest of the firms on the top half of this list work with anywhere from 1,500 to 17,000 individual clients. Telemus also works with estates, trusts, families, pension and profit-sharing plan sponsors, retirement plans, businesses and charitable organizations.
The firm does not list an account minimum but does have a minimum annual fee of $3,750. This firm staffs three certified financial planners (CFPs), one certified public accountant (CPA), two accredited wealth management advisors (AWMAs), one chartered advisor in philanthropy (CAP), one chartered financial analyst (CFA) and one chartered wealth manager (CWM).
This Southfield-based firm is fee-based, as some of its advisors sell insurance policies. Although the advisors may earn commissions from sales, the firm abides by fiduciary duty and therefore must act in your best interest.
Telemus Capital, LLC Background
Telemus Capital, LLC was founded in 2013. The firm comes from a long line of predecessor firms that were similarly titled. Focus Operating, LLC, a holding company, now owns the firm.
Telemus Capital has some of the more unique service offerings on the market today, including:
- Financial goal planning
- Cash flow planning
- Tax planning
- Charitable gift planning
- Estate planning
- Retirement planning
- Property, health, life and casualty insurance review
- 401(k) management for plan sponsors
Telemus Capital, LLC Investing Strategy
Rather than attempting to fit clients into predefined categories, Telemus Capital, LLC is in favor of personalizing its investment plans to each client’s needs. The firm also wants to be flexible in its planning, and in doing so will afford you the opportunity to alter your risk tolerance, investment goals and any other variables whenever you please.
Even with this adaptable ideology, Telemus tries to instill some level of consistency across its portfolios by utilizing principles such as tax and fee efficiency. Nearly all of the firm’s portfolios include some blend of individual equities, individual bonds, ETFs, mutual funds and alternative investments.
Zhang Financial LLC
Zhang Financial LLC is a fee-only financial advisor firm based in Portage that has more than $2.78 million in assets under management (AUM). Zhang advises roughly double the number of regular individuals as it does high-net-worth individuals. It also does a substantial institutional business, advising pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and state or municipal government entities. Fees at Zhang may be flat or based on a percentage of assets under management. The firm has a wrap fee program, allowing clients to pay one fee for a suite of services. Advisors do not make commissions. The minimum account size at Zhang is $1 million.
There are 12 advisors on staff at Zhang with a bevy of certifications, including six certified financial planners (CFPs), six certified public accountants (CPAs), three chartered financial analysts (CFAs), one chartered financial consultant (ChFC), one chartered life underwriter (CLU) and one certified divorce financial planner (CDFA).
Zhang Financial, LLC Background
Charles Zhang founded the firm in 2012. He remains the principal owner of the firm and acts as an advisor and CEO of the company.
The firm’s services include:
- Investment planning
- Retirement planning
- Estate planning
- Charitable planning
- Education planning
- Insurance analysis
Zhang Financial, LLC Investment Strategy
Zhang may implement the following strategies for a client’s portfolio:
- Long-term purchases (securities held for at least a year)
- Short-term purchases (securities held less than a year)
- Trading (securities sold within 30 days)
- Margin transactions
- Option writing
Zhang’s advisors use fundamental, technical and cyclical analysis to look at companies and securities and decide where to invest client’s money.
Advance Capital Management, Inc.
Based in Southfield, Advance Capital Management, Inc. has nearly $2.61 billion in assets under management (AUM). Employed at this firm are 13 certified financial planners (CFPs), two certified regulatory and compliance professionals (CRPCs), one certified public accountant (CPA), one accredited investment fiduciary (AIF), one accredited investment fiduciary analyst (AIFA) and one chartered mutual fund counselor (CMFC).
With more than 5,000 individual clients, the firm manages assets for nearly four times as many individuals as high-net-worth individuals. Aside from these groups, the firm also has working relationships with trusts, estates, corporations, charitable organizations, pension and profit-sharing plans, retirement plans and investment advisors and companies.
This fee-only firm has a variable account minimum that’s dependent on the type of service you want. Institutional clients must have at least $150,000 in assets, while retirement plan participants are required to have a minimum of $300,000.
Advance Capital Management also boasts a simple fee structure that solely includes a fee based on a percentage of your assets under management. In comparison, most other firms on this list also charge hourly fees and other fixed fees for their services.
Advance Capital Management, Inc. Background
Advance Capital Management, Inc. opened its doors for business in 1986. The firm’s parent company, Advance Capital Group, Inc., currently holds primary ownership.
This firm prefers to keep its advisory services as open-ended as possible so they can be more easily tailored to meet clients’ needs. In general, though, the firm splits its services into three categories: financial planning, asset management and investment advice.
Advance Capital Management, Inc. Investing Strategy
Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and open-end mutual funds make up the vast majority of Advance Capital Management’s client portfolios. This is because these investments are inherently diversified across entire markets, and therefore satisfy the firm’s requirements. Your personal tolerance for risk, time horizon, investment goals, tax situation and liquidity needs will guide the firm’s decisions on exactly what investments are made.
However, the firm does realize that not all investors will fit into this mold. So its advisors will create custom portfolios that include individual stocks, corporate bonds, municipal bonds, U.S. government securities and CDs, in addition to ETFs and mutual funds.
Mainstay Capital Management, LLC
Fee-only financial advisor firm Mainstay Capital Management, LLC has its home office in Grand Blanc. It boasts 15 chartered retirement planning counselor (CRPCs), nine certified financial planners (CFPs), five accredited asset management specialists (AAMSs), two chartered financial analysts (CFAs), one chartered mutual fund counselor (CMFC) and one accredited wealth management advisor (AWMA) on staff.
This firm primarily works with non-high-net-worth individual clients, as it currently manages assets for 2,000 more individuals than high-net-worth individuals. Its account minimum of $200,000 also makes it more accessible than some other firms on this list. While individuals make up the majority of accounts at Mainstay, it does have services available for trusts and corporations too.
Mainstay Capital Management, LLC Background
Mainstay Capital Management, LLC was created in 2000 and is under the principal ownership of CEO David Kudla. He has been in the financial services industry for over 15 years, and has been named one of Barron’s top 100 independent financial advisors in the U.S. for eight years running.
The firm’s main services are comprehensive investment management, individual 401(k), 457 and 403(b) account management and retirement plan transitions. But the firm’s services extend way beyond just that, as it also offers:
- Estate planning
- Retirement planning
- College savings planning
- Charitable gift planning
- Tax minimization
- Debt and mortgage optimization
- Buyout analysis
Mainstay Capital Management, LLC Investing Strategy
Mainstay Capital Management offers a few different pre-built investment strategies, ranging from ultra-aggressive to ultra-conservative. The firm is open to using short-term purchases within its client accounts, but not necessarily for the purpose of market-beating investing. Instead, the firm uses these investments to satisfy a client’s need for liquidity by shooting for quick, albeit risky, returns.
Exchange-traded fund (ETFs) and mutual funds are explicitly stated as the favored investment types of Mainstay Capital Management. But because these investments won’t always fit neatly into everyone’s plans, the firm will also review various stocks and bonds to flesh out certain client accounts.
Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc.
Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc. ranks second on SmartAsset’s list of the top financial advisor firms in Grand Rapids, its home city. You only need $25,000 in investable assets to join this firm, making it fairly accessible even for lower-level investors. Although Retirement Wealth Advisors primarily serves non-high-net-worth individuals, it can manage assets for pension and profit-sharing plans, trusts, estates, charitable organizations and businesses as well.
Some of the advisors at this fee-based firm sell insurance policies on a commission basis. But because the firm is registered with the SEC, it’s bound by fiduciary duty, requiring it to act in your best interest at all times.
Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc. Background
Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc. is principally owned by Jason Wenk, who also owns FormulaFolio Investments, LLC, the fourth entry on this list. However, Retirement Wealth Advisors has been around longer than Formula Folio, as it was established in 2005.
Whether you’re planning for retirement or you’ve already retired, this firm can help you manage your assets. As a supplement to these services, you can also take advantage of trust planning, estate planning and tax management.
Retirement Wealth Advisors, Inc. Investing Strategy
Retirement Wealth Advisors’ central focus is on planning for long-term, mainly retirement-oriented goals. The firm believes this approach can be beneficial even for those who aren’t necessarily inclined to invest for the long term. It will provide you with a complete, holistic financial and investment plan that takes into account just about every possible factor that could come into play.
Diversification is key to this strategy, and your advisor will look to accomplish it by investing in primarily exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds and bonds. To minimize risk further, the firm looks to invest both domestically and internationally. It also regularly rebalances client portfolios.
Retirement Income Solutions, Inc.
Fee-only financial advisor firm Retirement Income Solutions, Inc. is tied for the highest account minimum on this list. To be a client, you’ll need at least $500,000. The firm’s individual client base is split between those with and without a high net worth. In addition, corporations, trusts, estates, pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and not-for-profit entities will find services available at this firm.
You’ll find the main office of this firm in Ann Arbor. Three certified financial planners (CFPs) and one advisor certified compliance professional (IACCP) are on the firm’s 13-person advisory team.
Retirement Income Solutions, Inc. Background
Managing partners Brock Hastie, Todd Kephart, John Goff and Karen Chapell own Retirement Income Solutions, Inc., which was created in 1992. The quartet averages nearly 22 years in the financial services industry, giving this firm’s management team ample experience.
As its name likely makes clear, this firm’s services revolve around retirement planning. The firm can work with 401(k) plans, 403(b)s, 401(a)s, 457(b)s, IRAs, Roth IRAs, trusts and taxable accounts. It also claims to specialize in dealing with retirement accounts for university employees.
Retirement Income Solutions, Inc. Investing Strategy
Active management is one of the cornerstones of Retirement Income Solutions’ financial planning and investment management services. The firm actively manages its clients’ portfolios for a number of reasons, but the most prominent is likely to try to take advantage of brief market trends that could boost long-term returns and help satisfy short-term liquidity needs.
The firm believes that this management philosophy can also guard your portfolio in times of trouble. For example, if a sector of the market you’re invested in takes a dive, the firm can actively manage your portfolio and set it up more defensively.