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MRA Associates Review

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This review was produced by SmartAsset based on publicly available information. The named firm and its financial professionals have not reviewed, approved, or endorsed this review and are not responsible for its accuracy. Review content is produced by SmartAsset independently of any business relationships that might exist between SmartAsset and the named firm and its financial professionals, and firms and financial professionals having business relationships with SmartAsset receive no special treatment or consideration in SmartAsset’s reviews. This page contains links to SmartAsset’s financial advisor matching tool, which may or may not match you with the firm mentioned in this review or its financial professionals.

Going by Miller Russell Acquisitions at some point over its nearly 30 years in business, this firm now operates as MRA Associates. It is based in Phoenix, but also has satellite offices in Las Vegas and Wayzata, Minnesota. With more than $2.6 billion in assets under management (AUM), the firm employs 27 advisors and 56 employees overall.

As a fee-only firm, the sole form of compensation that MRA Associates earns is client-paid fees. This differs from a fee-based firm, as these typically receive insurance or securities commissions in addition to client-paid fees.

MRA Associates Background

MRA Associates was founded in 1991 by people who have since sold their stakes and left the firm. It currently has six managing partners in CEO Mark Feldman, Brad Lemon, Christina Burroughs, chief administrative officer Maureen Rzeppa, chief investment officer (CIO) Nathan Erickson and Mike Hirte. The firm also has six partners, including Dave Westra, Eric Ensign, Evan Judge, Will Froelich, Ryan Penniman and J.T. Vandegriff.

The team at MRA boasts a number of advisory certifications. These include certified financial planner (CFP), certified public accountant (CPA), chartered financial analyst (CFA), chartered alternative investment analyst (CAIA) and more.

MRA Associates Client Types and Minimum Account Sizes

MRA Associates' individual clientele is nearly evenly split between high-net-worth individuals and non-high-net-worth individuals. The firm also works with businesses, retirement plans, trusts, estates, pooled investment vehicles, endowments, foundations and other charitable organizations.

Though minimums may be lowered or waived at its discretion, the firm generally requires a $2 million minimum for its wealth management and investment advisory services, as well as a $3 million minimum for retirement plan consulting services. The robo-advisor program offered by MRA requires only $5,000 to open an account, or $50,000 if you wish to use the program's tax-loss harvesting feature.

Services Offered by MRA Associates

MRA Associates primarily offers investment management and financial planning services. On request, the firm can provide income tax consulting and return preparation. It can also help with general wealth management services, including cash flow planning, estate planning, charitable gift planning and wealth transfer planning.

Additionally, MRA offers an automated investment program through Charles Schwab & Co.’s Institutional Intelligent Portfolios platform. Charles Schwab is the brokerage for each client account, and portfolios typically invest in a combination of exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds and cash.

This firm also manages private investment funds and serves as sub-advisor to an affiliated fund.

MRA Associates Investing Philosophy

MRA Associates bases its investment decisions on both academic theory and informed market judgment, though it notes that “qualitative considerations play an important role,” too. It primarily prefers long-term investment strategies and emphasizes the importance of diversification. It generally selects securities from a broad universe of mutual funds, fixed-income instruments, separately managed stock or bond portfolios, ETFs or notes and multi-strategy vehicles.

As your portfolio ages, the firm will rebalance it to ensure that its originally designed asset allocation plan remains intact. The firm will also build your portfolio to minimize taxes.

Fees Under MRA Associates

Like most investment advisors, MRA Associates collects management fees based on a percentage of the client’s AUM. It may, though, charge a fixed fee for retirement plan consulting services or it may negotiate the fee at its discretion. The annual fee for the robo-advisor program is 0.75% of AUM.

Below is the standard fee schedule for investment management services. For context, a 2018 study by RIA in a Box found that the average annual advisory fee is about 0.95% of a client's AUM.

MRA Associates Fee Schedule
AUM Annual Fee
First $2MM 1.00%
Next $3MM 0.75%
Next $45MM 0.50%
Above $50MM 0.25%

The table below shows a breakdown of about how much you'll pay in advisory fees at MRA Associates. Note that although the firm has a $2 million minimum for its investment management services, it may decide to waive this requirement.

*Estimated investment management fees do not include brokerage, custodial, third-party manager or other fees, which can vary in amount.
Estimated Investment Management Fees at MRA Associates*
Your Assets MRA Associates Fee Amount
$500K $5,000
$1MM $10,000
$5MM $42,500
$10MM $67,500

MRA Associates Awards and Recognition

From 2018 to 2020, Forbes named MRA's CEO Mark Feldman to its list of the Best-In-State Wealth Advisors. In addition, MRA Associates has been named to the Financial Times’ 300 Top Registered Investment Advisers list every year since 2015. MRA has also earned Financial Advisor Magazine’s top RIA ranking every year since 2015.

What to Watch Out For

MRA Associates reported two disclosures in its most recent SEC filings. One involved a senior client advisor and the other a senior client associate. Both remain with the firm to this day.

Opening an Account With MRA Associates

To contact MRA Associates, you can send a message through the contact page on its website. Although the firm is headquartered in Phoenix, it also runs branches in Las Vegas and Wayzata, Minnesota. Here's the phone number for each MRA office:

  • Phoenix, AZ: (602) 468-1232
  • Las Vegas, NV: (702) 479-2799
  • Wayzata, MN: (800) 222-1232

All information was accurate as of the writing of this article. 

Tips for Finding a Financial Advisor 

  • Are you overwhelmed by the number of financial advisor options you have? Use SmartAsset’s free financial advisor matching tool to narrow down your choices. Through our tool, you'll match with up to three advisors in your area, with the final choice of who to work with being up to you. Get started now.
  • Ask how advisor candidates get paid. Those whose only compensation is the fees they collect from you will likely have fewer conflicts of interests than those who also receive commissions. That said, if any advisors say they are fiduciaries, that means they will work in your best interests.

How Long $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 We weighed potential expenditures for a prospective retiree with a  $1 million nest egg to assess how many years that fund would cover in retirement in America’s largest cities.

We 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 metro areas across the U.S.

We assumed the $1 million would grow at a net annual return of 2% after inflation. 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.