Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in North Carolina
If you're looking for a financial advisor in North Carolina, there are a lot to choose from all over the state. To help you sort through the options, SmartAsset compiled this list of the top financial advisor firms in the state. If you'd prefer to have the work of finding a firm done for you, the financial advisor matching tool from SmartAsset can match you with as many as three advisors who serve your area.
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|Rank||Financial Advisor||Assets Managed||Minimum Assets||Financial Services||More Information|
|1||CAPTRUST Find an Advisor||$655,054,291,754||$50,000|| || |
|2||Alphastar Capital Management, LLC Find an Advisor||$1,567,171,002||$10,000|| || |
|3||Parsec Financial Find an Advisor||$4,226,304,258||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|4||Bragg Financial Advisors Inc. Find an Advisor||$3,070,907,908||Varies by account type|| || |
Minimum AssetsVaries by account type
|5||Delegate Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$946,705,228||$50,000,000|| || |
|6||Veratis Advisors, Inc Find an Advisor||$3,981,673,216||$1,000,000|| || |
|7||Dixon Hughes Goodman Wealth Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,206,001,630||$5,000 minimum annual fee|| || |
Minimum Assets$5,000 minimum annual fee
|8||Salem Investment Counselors Inc. Find an Advisor||$3,500,685,568||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|9||Woodard & Co Asset Management Group Inc. Find an Advisor||$962,700,000||$100,000|| || |
|10||Biltmore Family Office, LLC Find an Advisor||$2,557,958,721|| |
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What We Use in Our Methodology
To find the top financial advisors in North Carolina, we first identified all firms registered with the SEC in the state. 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.
CAPTRUST is a fee-based advisor with a minimum investment of just $50,000, making it fairly affordable for most potential investors. The firm’s leadership team alone includes three chartered financial analysts (CFAs), three accredited retirement plan specialists (ARPSs) two certified public accountants (CPAs) one certified investment management analyst (CIMA) and one accredited investment fiduciary (AIF).
The firm is fee-based, so advisors may earn commissions for buying and selling products, but they are still a fiduciary and must act in the best interest of the client. Advising fees are based on a percentage of assets under management (AUM). The firm serves individuals (both high-net-worth and non-high-net-worth), banks, investment companies, pensions, profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations, state or municipal government entities, insurance companies and corporations.
CAPTRUST was founded in 2003. It is nearly 100% owned by a limited liability corporation called The CapFinancial Group. That parent company is held at 45% by CapFinancial Holdings, which is in turn owned at about 40% by James Fielding Miller, the CEO of CAPTRUST. The rest of CapFinancial Holdings is also owned by Captrust Employees.
Services offered at the firm include investment advisory, asset allocation analysis, investment manager selection, mutual fund evaluation, quarterly performance measurement, financial planning and analysis, estate planning review, tax review, insurance review and charitable giving strategies.
CAPTRUST Investment Strategy
Advisors at CAPTRUST use both risk-based and outcome-based analysis when deciding on asset allocation for a client. Asset classes used in a portfolio could include US equities, international equities, fixed-income, strategic opportunities, commodities and real estate. The following portfolio models are available:
- Discretionary Consulting Portfolios
- Capital Preservation & Income
- Wealth Managed Accounts Portfolios
- All Fixed-Income
- Low Volatility Alternatives
- All Equity
- Wealth Managed Account Portfolios
Alphastar Capital Management
Alphastar Capital Management is a fee-based advisor operating out of Cornelius. Advisory fees are generally based on a percentage of assets under management, but advisors may also earn commissions for selling securities or insurance. This is a conflict of interest, but advisors are still bound by fiduciary duty when acting as an advisor.
The minimum investment at Alphastar is $10,000. The team includes one chartered financial analyst (CFA), two certified financial planners (CFPs) and one chartered financial consultant (ChFC). Most of the firm’s clients are non-high-net-worth individuals, though there are a small number of high-net-worth clients as well. Institutional clients include pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and corporations.
Alphastar Capital Management Background
Alphastar Capital Management was founded in 2011. The managing partner is Brian K. Williams, but no single individual or entity owns more than 25% of the firm.
Alphastar’s services include investment management, model portfolios, subadvisory services, financial planning, budgeting, cash flow analysis, tax analysis, retirement planning, insurance planning and estate planning.
Alphastar Capital Management Investment Strategy
Alphastar Capital Management uses two basic strategies when it comes to investment. The strategic approach sets asset allocations and periodically rebalances the portfolio to get back to those allocations. Both active and passive investments may be used. The tactical approach is mathematically based and looks to identify trends of markets and asset classes. A portfolio's composition may reflect both of these approaches.
Parsec Financial Management
Parsec Financial Management is a fee-only firm which works with a nearly even split of high-net-worth and non-high-net-worth individuals. The firm also works with institutional clients including pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and corporations. There is no minimum account size at the firm, where the team includes 23 certified financial planners (CFPs), five certified public accountants (CPAs), five chartered financial analysts (CFAs), two chartered retirement planning counselors (CRPCs) two accredited investment fiduciaries (AIFs) and various other certifications.
Parsec Financial Management Background
Parsec Financial Management was founded in 1980 by William Barton Boyer, who remains a principal owner of the firm. All employees are given the chance to be owners of the firm through buying privately-held stock.
Services offered at Parsec include investment management, financial planning, ERISA consulting and trust services.
Parsec Financial Management Investment Strategy
Parsec Financial Management uses fundamental analysis as its principal method of selecting securities for clients. Components of a portfolio may include international equities, large-, small- and mid-cap equities, fixed-income investments, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and mutual funds.
Bragg Financial Advisors
Bragg Financial Advisors is a fee-only firm located in Charlotte. Clients of the firm include high-net-worth individuals and other individual investors, plus institutional clients including investment companies, pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and corporations.
The firm’s team includes nine certified financial planners (CFPs), five chartered financial analysts (CFAs), two certified public accountants (CPAs), one chartered retirement plan counselor (CRPC) and one accredited investment fiduciary (AIF).
A minimum of $3 million of assets under management is required for the Managed Account Program and a minimum of $1 million of assets is required for the Small Cap Value Managed Account Program. These minimums may be negotiable.
Bragg Financial Advisors Background
Bragg Financial Advisors was created in 1997. It was founded and is owned by the Bragg family, the patriarch of which, J. Frank Bragg, Jr., has been working in the financial services industry since 1964.
Services offered at the firm include individual portfolio management, portfolio construction, financial planning, retirement planning, education planning, investments, insurance and estate planning.
Bragg Financial Advisors Investment Strategy
The following model portfolios are available as options at Bragg Financial Advisors:
- Aggressive Allocation with Emphasis on Capital Appreciation
- Moderately Aggressive Allocation with Primary Emphasis on Capital Appreciation and Secondary Emphasis on Income.
- Moderate Allocation with Emphasis on Capital Appreciation and Income.
- Moderately Conservative Allocation with Emphasis on Capital Appreciation, Capital Preservation and Income
- Moderately Conservative Allocation with Emphasis on Capital Preservation, Income and Moderate Capital Appreciation.
- Conservative Allocation with Emphasis on Capital Preservation and Income; Capital Appreciation is Secondary.
Delegate Advisors is a Chapel Hill advisory firm which operates on a fee-only basis. The firm does not provide a fee schedule as it expects all clients will be qualified purchasers. The firm does not have many clients, just a few dozen high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals and a small number of pooled investment vehicles and corporations.
The firm’s team includes one certified financial planner (CFP) and one chartered financial analyst (CFA). The minimum account size is generally $50 million, but for athletes the minimum is lowered to $25 million.
Delegate Advisors Background
Delegate Advisors was founded in 2012. No single investor owns more than 25% of the firm, and the firm operates on an independent basis. Delegate is run by CEO Andy Hart, president and CIO Benjamin Thompson, director of portfolio management Dunkin Allison and director of investment research Jim Powers.
Services offered include investment services, tax strategy, estate planning, pension advisors, insurance planning and asset protection planning.
Delegate Advisors Investment Strategy
Advisors at Delegate use a number of analytical tools to make investment choices for clients, including fundamental, technical and cyclical analyses. Diversification is key, including diversification across class, style, sector and industry. Mutual funds are the most used investment, along with stocks, bonds, hedge funds and cash holdings.
Veratis Advisors is a fee-only firm which works almost exclusively with high-net-worth individuals. The firm also works with pension and profit-sharing plans, as well as municipal and government entities. You will need a minimum of $1 million in investable assets in order to open an account at this firm.
The team at Veratis Advisors counts two certified financial planners (CFPs) and one qualified 401(k) administrator (QKA) designation.
Veratis Advisors Background
Veratis Advisors was founded in 2001 by Steve Simpson and Peggy Brinn.
Services offered at Veratis include investment management, financial planning and retirement plan advisory services to plan sponsors.
Veratis Advisors Investment Strategy
Veratis Advisors uses fundamental analysis as its principal method of selecting securities for clients. Portfolios may include mutual funds, exchange-traded funds, stable value collective trust funds and insurance company fixed accounts.
Dixon Hughes Goodman Wealth Advisors
Dixon Hughes Goodman Wealth Advisors (DHGWA) is a fee-based firm operating in Asheville. Advising fees are based on a percentage of assets under management, and some advisors at the firm also earn commissions for selling insurance. This represents a conflict of interest, but advisors are still bound by fiduciary duty to represent their clients' best interests. Clients of DHGWA include individuals (both high-net-worth and otherwise), plus institutional clients including pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations, educational trusts and corporations.
There is no minimum investment requirement provided by the firm, but the minimum annual fee is $5,000. The team of advisors includes eight certified financial planners (CFPs), three chartered retirement plan counselors (CRPCs), three accredited investment fiduciaries (AIFs), three certified public accountant (CPA), two chartered retirement plan specialists (CRPSes) and one certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA).
Dixon Hughes Goodman Wealth Advisors Background
Dixon Hughes Goodman was established as an independent advisory shop in 1997. Since 2004, it has been owned by Dixon Hughes Goodman Financial Services, which is itself owned by the partners of DHG, a public accounting firm.
Services offered by the firm include financial planning, investment management and retirement plan services.
Dixon Hughes Goodman Wealth Advisors Investment Strategy
Modern portfolio theory (MPT) is the primary basis for deciding which securities to buy and sell at DHGWA. This seeks to minimize risk and maximize returns while investing across asset classes. Low-cost mutual funds are among the most frequently used investments at the firm. Actively managed funds generally are not used due to their high prices and uneven returns.
Salem Investment Counselors
Salem Investment Counselors, Inc. is a Winston-Salem based advisory shop offering services on a fee-only basis. Clients at Salem include a nearly even divide between high-net-worth and non-high-net-worth clients. The only institutional clients at Salem are charitable organizations.
Fees at this firm are based on a percentage of your overall assets under management. The core members of its advisory team are all chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and also include four certified public accountants (CPAs).
There is no set account minimum.
Salem Investment Counselors Background
Salem Investment Counselors was founded in 1979. It is wholly owned by its partners, with the following people owning equal shares: Dale M. Brown, David B. Rea, Kenneth S. Jones, Mark Thompson and Joseph McCaffrey.
The main services offered at Salem are financial planning and asset management.
Salem Investment Counselors Investment Strategy
When choosing investments, advisors at Salem Investment Counselors look for companies with at least one of the following characteristics:
- Established companies with above average prospects for growth.
- Small and medium-sized companies currently selling at prices that don’t reflect their long-term potential
- Companies in industries currently undergoing consolidation
Around 80% of all investments at the firm are in stocks. Bonds, mutual funds and cash holdings are also used to invest client money.
Woodard & Co Asset Management Group
Woodard & Co Asset Management Group is a fee-only advisory firm which operates out of Bermuda Run. The firm's clients largely do not have a high net worth, although it also serves high-net-worth individuals, charitable organizations and business.
The firm’s team includes two certified financial planners (CFPs), and the minimum account size is generally $100,000 in investable assets.
Woodard & Co Asset Management Group Background
Woodard & Co was founded in 1985 and is owned by John B Woodard, Jr.
Services offered include discretionary asset management and financial planning.
Woodard & Co Asset Management Group Investment Strategy
Advisors at Woodard & Co use two main methods to make investment choices for clients: tactical asset allocation and market leader diversification. The primary portfolio structure is created based on a client's needs and objectives, using leading mutual fund management to diversify assets. To manage equities, Woodard & Co seeks to invest in blue chip stocks that are leaders or emerging leaders in specific industry groups. These portfolios are typically tax efficient and sector neutral to the S&P 500 Index.
Biltmore Family Office
Biltmore Family Office is a fee-only firm based in Charlotte committed to serving high-net-worth individuals with $10 million or more in assets.
The firm’s team includes two certified financial planners (CFPs), two chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and one certified public accountant (CPA).
Biltmore Family Office Background
Biltmore Family Office was founded in 2008. Partners include CEO Chris Cecil, Mike Farrell, head of planning Nikki Gokey and head of investments Rael Gorelick.
Services offered at the firm focus on multi-generational wealth management, including family balance sheet management, investment planning and selection, tax management and wealth planning.
Biltmore Family Office Investment Strategy
Assets at the Biltmore Family Office are typically managed on a discretionary basis, although the firm does offer non-discretionary management as well. Since the firm focuses on wealth management for high-net-worth individuals, its investment recommendations are highly customized for each client's objectives and needs.
Advisors at the firm base target allocations on a client's financial priorities, such as lifestyle, generational and legacy objectives. The following strategies are used to tailor client portfolios:
- Active security selection
- Passive ETF allocation
- Implementing bond and debt related strategies
- Distressed bond and debt related strategies
- Trading strategies
- Macro-economic strategies
- Commercial Real Estate
- Private Equity