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The Top Financial Advisors in Ohio

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Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Ohio

Ohio is home to some of the largest and most popular financial advisor firms in the nation. While this might sound like a blessing, it could make the decision process that much more difficult and confusing for prospective clients. To ease this overwhelming situation, SmartAsset created this list of the top 10 financial advisor firms in Ohio. And to help you differentiate between the firms, we’ve outlined each firm’s fees, account minimums, specialties and more. The SmartAsset financial advisor matching tool can even further simplify the decision process by pairing you with advisors near you.

Rank Financial Advisor Assets Managed Minimum Assets Financial Services More Information
1 Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc. Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc. logo Find an Advisor

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$68,465,258,419 Varies based on account type
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisers
  • Sub-advisor

Minimum Assets

Varies based on account type

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisers
  • Sub-advisor
2 Johnson Investment Counsel, Inc. Johnson Investment Counsel, Inc. logo Find an Advisor

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$15,525,433,495 Varies based on account type
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management 
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)

Minimum Assets

Varies based on account type

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management 
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
3 Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel logo Find an Advisor

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$16,408,936,565 $750,000
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors
  • Publication of periodicals

Minimum Assets

$750,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisors
  • Publication of periodicals

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4 MAI Capital Management, LLC MAI Capital Management, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$9,248,835,575 $500,000
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Due diligence/research

Minimum Assets

$500,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Due diligence/research
5 Bartlett Wealth Management Bartlett Wealth Management logo Find an Advisor

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$7,189,167,636 Varies based on account type
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management 
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)

Minimum Assets

Varies based on account type

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management 
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
6 Sequoia Financial Advisors, LLC Sequoia Financial Advisors, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$5,547,443,243 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Advisor selection
  • Publication of periodicals
  • Educational seminars

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Advisor selection
  • Publication of periodicals
  • Educational seminars
7 Clearstead Advisors, LLC Clearstead Advisors, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$7,162,977,375 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Publication of newsletter/periodicals
  • Investment consulting services to 401(k), endowment, founation and healthcare clients

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors (including private fund managers)
  • Publication of newsletter/periodicals
  • Investment consulting services to 401(k), endowment, founation and healthcare clients
8 Carnegie Investment Counsel Carnegie Investment Counsel logo Find an Advisor

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$2,943,018,459 $500,000
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors

Minimum Assets

$500,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors
9 Hamilton Capital Hamilton Capital logo Find an Advisor

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$2,911,016,365 $500,000
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors

Minimum Assets

$500,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting
  • Selection of other advisors
10 Truepoint, Inc. Truepoint, Inc. logo Find an Advisor

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$3,864,680,680 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management 
  • Pension consulting services

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management 
  • Pension consulting services

How We Found the Top Financial Advisor Firms in Ohio

To find the top financial advisors in Ohio, 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:

Fort Washington Investment Advisors

Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc.

Fort Washington Investment Advisors is a fee-based investment advisor based in Cincinnati. The firm has a big team of advisors managing money for clients, with all individual clients being high-net-worth. Fort Washington also manages money for institutional clients including investment companies, pooled investment vehicles, retirement plans, charitable organizations, state or municipal government entities, insurance companies and corporations. The minimum account size depends on the investment strategy, ranging from $500,000 to $50 million.

The private client team includes certified financial planners (CFPs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and chartered alternative investment analysts (CAIAs).

Fees for investment management are based on a percentage of assets under management. Some employees of Fort Washington are also brokers or insurance agents who collect transaction-based fees. This is a potential conflict of interest, but advisors are bound by their fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of the client.

Fort Washington Investment Advisors Background

Fort Washington was founded in 1990. The principal shareholders in the firm are: Western & Southern Mutual Holding Company, Western & Southern Financial Group, The Western and Southern Life Insurance Company and Western & Southern Investment Holdings, LLC.

Services offered at the firm include:

Fort Washington Investment Advisors Investing Strategy

A number of investment strategies and securities may be used by advisors at Fort Washington. These include: 

  • Long-term purchases
  • Short-term purchases
  • Short sales
  • Options
  • Domestic and international equities
  • Derivatives
  • Private equity investments

Johnson Investment Counsel

Johnson Investment Counsel, Inc.

Johnson Investment Counsel, Inc. is the next firm up on our Ohio list. The fee-only firm is based in Cincinnati and is also on SmartAsset’s top Cincinnati financial advisors list.

There is quite a large advisory staff at Johnson Investment Counsel. Across this group, you’ll find several chartered financial analysts (CFAs), certified financial planners (CFPs), certified trust and financial advisors (CTFAs) and chartered alternative investment analysts (CAIAs), along with a number of other financially certified advisors.

Most of the firm's individual clients do not have high net worths. Aside from individuals, the firm also works with trusts, estates, investment companies, businesses, government entities, retirement plans and charitable organizations. The firm's minimum account size may vary based on the type of account you open.

Johnson Investment Counsel Background

Johnson Investment Counsel was founded in 1965. Its ownership is split among many of its employees.

To manage client assets as comprehensively as possible, this firm employs a slew of different pillars of financial management. These pillars include goal-based financial planning, investment management, retirement planning, insurance analysis, income tax planning and estate planning.

Johnson Investment Counsel Investing Strategy

Rather than have one advisor form each client’s portfolio and investment plan, Johnson Investment Counsel prefers to work as a group. The firm believes this plays to its collective experience and allows clients to benefit from the entire team’s knowledge.

Portfolios are primarily made up of exchange-traded funds, stocks, bonds and mutual funds. However, the exact mix depends on each client's risk tolerance, time horizon and other factors.

Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel

Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel

Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel is a fee-only firm based in Cincinnati. All of the firm's individual clients are high-net-worth. The firm also advises institutional clients including investment companies, pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations, state or municipal government entities and other corporations. Bahl & Gaynor requires a minimum account size of at least $750,000, and it charges a minimum annual fee of $7,000. Fees are based on a percentage of assets under management and advisors do not make commissions for selling securities or financial products to clients. 

Of the advisors on staff at Bahl & Gaynor, there are advisory certifications such as chartered financial analyst (CFA), chartered investment counselor (CIC), certified financial planner (CFP), chartered wealth manager (CWM) and certified public accountant (CPA).

Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel Background

Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel was founded in 1990. The principal shareholders of the firm are all senior officers at the firm, including co-founders William F. Bahl, chairman, and Vere W. Gaynor, president.

Services offered at the firm include:

  • Portfolio management
  • Financial planning services
  • Cash flow planning
  • Estate planning
  • Tax strategies
  • Retirement planning
  • Education funding

Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel Investment Strategies

The following investment management model portfolios are available for Bahl & Gaynor clients:

  • Quality Growth
  • Income Growth
  • Mid-Cap Growth
  • Small Growth
  • SMIG (Small-/Mid-Cap Income Growth) 
  • Total Return Bond Strategy

MAI Capital Management

MAI Capital Management, LLC

As a top financial advisor firm in Cleveland, MAI Capital Management is next on our list. The firm’s client base is primarily comprised of high-net-worth individuals, but it also includes less affluent individuals, pension and profit-sharing plans, trusts, foundations, endowments and corporations. The firm says it specializes in working with senior business executives and sports professionals.

The fee-based firm recommends that new clients open accounts with at least $500,000. The team includes certified financial planners (CFPs), certified public accountants (CPAs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs), chartered retirement planning counselors (CRPCs) and chartered life underwriters (CLUs), among a few other certifications.

MAI Capital Management may charge performance-based fees if your portfolio outperforms its original projections. Performance-based fees are considered a conflict of interest (advisors have an incentive to take more risks). The firm is also fee-based, and advisors who can receive commissions from selling financial products to clients are also subject to a potential conflict of interest. However, as a fiduciary, the firm is required to act in clients' best interests.

MAI Capital Management Background

MAI Capital Management was originally established as Investment Advisors International, Inc. in 1973. After a number of acquisitions and mergers, the firm was renamed as MAI Capital Management in 2014. The firm's primary owner is Richard Buoncore, a managing partner at the firm.

MAI offers general investment management for investors who don’t have a specific objective in mind. For those that do, the following goals-based services are available:

  • Estate planning
  • Retirement planning
  • Insurance review and analysis
  • Tax planning and minimization
  • Financial accounting
  • Philanthropic gift planning

MAI Capital Management Investing Strategy

At MAI Capital Management, your risk tolerance, time horizon and liquidity needs will collectively determine your portfolio’s composition. Also, the tax implications of an investment will strongly influence the firm’s decisions.

Additionally, market timing comes into consideration, though the firm primarily takes a long-term approach. MAI isn’t totally against using short-term strategies because these can potentially garner quick returns, albeit with a higher level of risk.

Bartlett Wealth Management

Bartlett Wealth Management

Bartlett Wealth Management has high minimums to establish an account. You'll either need to meet a $2 million or $10 million threshold. It’s a fee-only firm that manages assets for more than 1,800 individuals who are almost evenly split between those who do and don't have high net worths. The firm also works with foundations, endowments, corporate and non-profit retirement plans, public funds and Taft-Hartley plans.

Cincinnati is home for this firm, and it's on SmartAsset’s list of the top financial advisor firms in the city. Bartlett’s advisory team holds many advisor certifications, including the chartered financial analyst (CFA), certified financial planners (CFP), registered life planner (RLP), certified public accountant (CPA), chartered alternative investment analyst (CAIA), certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA), certified exit planning advisor (CEPA) and accredited domestic partnership advisor (ADPA) certifications.

Bartlett Wealth Management Background

Bartlett Wealth Management has been in business since 1898, making it one of the oldest financial advisor firms in the U.S. Focus Operating, LLC mostly owns the firms, while some employees have small stakes.

The firm’s services are divided into two major areas: investment management and financial planning. Its investment management services encompass different styles of investing, such as equity management, fixed-income, alternative investments and environmental and social investing. Its financial planning services each focus on more specific needs and include:

  • Retirement planning
  • Financial impact of divorce
  • Managing an inheritance
  • Stock option exercise
  • Birth of a child/grandchild
  • Coping with an elderly parent
  • Coping with the death of a spouse
  • Charitable gift planning
  • Early retirement package planning
  • Large stock position management

Bartlett Wealth Management Investing Strategy

Diversification is important to most firms in today’s financial advising world, and Bartlett Wealth Management is no exception. The firm invests in noncorrelating asset classes across stocks, exchange-traded funds, mutual funds and some international investments.

The firm is also an active investment manager, which sets it apart from many similar firms. Through this ideology, Bartlett strives to maximize the possibility of high returns while minimizing risk by consistently moving assets to try to take advantage of changing opportunities in the market.

Sequoia Financial Advisors

Sequoia Financial Advisors, LLC

Next up on our list of the top financial advisors in Ohio is Sequoia Financial Advisors. This large firm, which is also on our list of Akron's top financial advisors, works almost exclusively with individual clients. Of these individuals, the vast majority do not have a high net worth. It also works with a few institutional clients, such as charities and businesses.

Sequoia is a fee-based advisory firm. Because some advisors are registered and able to sell insurance products to clients, there is potential for a conflict of interest to arise. However, the firm's status as a fiduciary makes it legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients at all times. There is no minimum account size requirement at this firm.

Sequoia Financial Advisors Background

Sequoia Financial Advisors was founded in 2000 and became an SEC-registered investment advisor about two years later, in 2002. The firm recently merged with Wealthstone Advisors. Sequoia Financial Group, LLC is the owner of the firm. However, Thomas Haught, president of Sequoia and Gerald Knotek, chief compliance officer and executive vice president of the firm both have ownership interests in Sequoia Financial Group.

Sequoia provides its clients with a range of financial advisory services. Investment portfolio management services may be tailored, but the firm may also make use of model portfolios.

Sequoia Financial Advisors Investment Strategy

As is the case with most financial advisory firms, Sequoia Financial Advisors looks to tailor its investment strategies to the needs of clients. While portfolios may be fully tailored from scratch, the firm may also use model portfolios to help invest according the financial situation and investment objectives of each client individually. 

Advisors use such investments as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), real estate investment trusts (REITs) and others to populate client portfolios. They will use a variety of analysis methods, including fundamental, technical and cyclical.

Clearstead Advisors

Clearstead Advisors, LLC

This fee-only Cleveland firm works with far more high-net-worth individuals than it does non-high-net-worth individuals. Rounding out its typical clientele are retirement funds, endowments, foundations and operating funds for both nonprofit and for-profit organizations, insurance companies and healthcare institutions. The firm does not list a set account minimum.

Clearstead Advisors has a team that includes certifications such as chartered financial analyst (CFA), chartered alternative investment analyst (CAIA), certified financial planner (CFP) and certified public accountant (CPA). Clearstead is also engaged in an accounting firm business.

Clearstead Advisors Background

Until 2018, Clearstead Advisors was known as Hartland & Co. The firm is owned by three different companies: Hartland Holdings, Inc., Hartland Management Investors, LLC and Rosemont Partners III, LP. The two Hartland groups are made up of employees of the firm, which was originally formed in 1989.

This firm builds unique investment and financial plans for each of its clients as opposed to pairing clients with previously created solutions. The firm’s stated areas of expertise are retirement and healthcare management for institutions and family financial management for private clients.

Clearstead Advisors Investing Strategy

Clearstead Advisors believes it can build successful portfolios by working to control risk. While this isn’t necessarily a novel idea, this emphasis helps to reduce a portfolio's market volatility, making it more stable over the long term. 

The firm combines both active and passive investment strategies. This marriage of two approaches allows the firm to take advantage of broad opportunities in the market.

Carnegie Investment Counsel

Carnegie Investment Counsel

Carnegie Investment Counsel is the next firm on our list of the top financial advisory firms in the state of Ohio. The firm has a pretty broad client base, though the majority of its clients are non-high-net-worth individuals. It also works with a good number of high-net-worth individuals. Institutional clients include retirement plans, charities, government entities, insurance companies and businesses.

Carnegie is a fee-only firm, so advisors don't earn commissions and there's not potential conflict of interest. The firm has a $500,000 minimum account size requirement for advisory services.

Carnegie Investment Counsel Background

Carnegie Investment Counsel was founded in 1974, making it one of the older firms on our Ohio list. Despite such an early founding date, the firm only registered with the SEC as an investment advisor in 2009. This is due to the fact that Carnegie as it exists now was formed by merging with its successor firm, Carnegie Capital Management Corporation, in 2009 as well. The firm is principally owned by Gary P. Wagner and Richard L. Alt.

Carnegie works with clients to provide both investment portfolio management services and financial planning services. Assets are mainly managed on a discretionary basis.

Carnegie Investment Counsel Investment Strategy

When it comes to investment strategies, Carnegie Investment Counsel provides clients with tailored and ongoing strategies. Advisors work to design individualized investment strategies by learning about each client's tolerance for risk, liquidity needs, financial situation and investment objectives. 

Carnegie and its advisors use a wide range of investments, including equities, bonds, fixed-income securities, mutual funds, debt exchange-traded funds (ETFs), hedge funds, third-party money managers, private placements and more. More specifically, investments will depend on the particular client.

Hamilton Capital

Hamilton Capital

Hamilton Capital is next up on our Ohio list. It's also on our list of top advisor firms in Columbus. The firm is fee-only, which means that advisors collect compensation only from clients. They do not receive transaction-based fees from third parties, which can pose conflicts of interest.

The team has employees in Columbus and Palm Beach, Florida. These advisors carry financial certifications such as certified financial planner (CFP), chartered financial analyst (CFA), certified public accountant (CPA), accredited investment fiduciary (AIF), certified investment management analyst (CIMA) and certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA).

The majority of clients do not have high net worths, though a good number do. The firm also works with foundations, endowments, and qualified and non-qualified retirement plans. The firm has a minimum account size requirement of $500,000, and it charges a $1,250 minimum quarterly annual fee to wealth management clients. Investment management services may also have an annual minimum fee.

Hamilton Capital Background

R. Matthew Hamilton founded his namesake firm in 1997. Over the years, he's won a number of awards, including being named to Barron's "America’s Top 1,200 Financial Advisors" and Mutual Funds magazine's "100 Great Financial Planners." Today, he is the firm's majority owner and serves as chairman and CEO.

The practice considers investment management as its core service. It also offers wealth management, which combines investment management with financial planning. Additionally, the firm acts as co-advisor to other advisors and offers non-investment consulting on such topics as estate planning, insurance and tax planning.

Hamilton Capital Investing Strategy

Hamilton Capital takes a top-down, macro-economic approach to investing, starting with its analysis of global macro-economic and political conditions. It then estimates the valuation and expected return and risk for a range of asset classes - and runs a range of scenarios. With its analysis of base case ranking of returns and the outcomes of other scenarios, the advisory will design a portfolio customized to the client's goals and chosen investing strategies. Generally, the firm will use mutual funds, exchange-traded funds, third-party investment managers, alternative investments or similar vehicles.

Truepoint

Truepoint, Inc.

Though Truepoint doesn't have the biggest advisory team out there, but, its team is very financially certified. The firm has a ton of certified financial planners (CFPs), certified public accountants (CPAs) and chartered financial analysts (CFAs). Other certifications include certified trust and financial advisor (CTFA), chartered alternative investment analyst (CAIA) and certified estate planner (CEP) on staff. The Cincinnati-based operation is on SmartAsset’s list of the top financial advisor firms in Cincinnati.

Truepoint does not require a minimum balance to open an account. However, the fee-only firm’s client base is made up of mass affluent and high-net-worth individuals. It also works with families, trusts, businesses, qualified plans and foundations.

Truepoint Background

Truepoint was founded in 1990 by CEO Michael Chasnoff. The firm is currently employee-owned. Its team of financial planners, investment managers and wealth advisors has a wide range of experience levels, from newbies to industry veterans.

The practice offers investment management, financial planning, wealth management(which is the first two combined) and family office services. Based on your financial situation, goals and other factors, your advisor will determine which services are appropriate. People with less than $3 million in investable assets may be pointed toward RhineVest Advisors, a subsidiary of Truepoint and hybrid robo-advisor (a digital platform with ongoing personal guidance).

As far as financial planning topics go, the firm can help you with:

  • Investment planning
  • Tax planning and preparation
  • Trust services
  • Estate planning
  • Risk and insurance planning
  • Budget creation
  • Cash flow planning
  • Coordinated personal action plans

Truepoint Investing Strategy

Rather than attempt to beat the market, Truepoint engages in passive investing, which statistically outperforms active investing, which comes with high costs and requires a lot of luck. Like many, the firm believes in long-term investments that are goal-focused and low cost. The firm also relies on a “buy-hold-rebalance” strategy, as it believes that rebalancing is an important tool for achieving long-term financial success.

How Long $1mm 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 analyzed data on average expenditures for seniors, cost of living and investment returns to determine how many years of retirement a $1 million nest egg would cover in cities across America.

First, we looked at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the average annual expenditures of seniors. 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. Using this data, SmartAsset calculated the average cost of living for retirees in the largest U.S. cities.

We assumed the $1 million would grow at a real return (interest minus inflation) of 2%. 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.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Council for Community and Economic Research