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Top Financial Advisors in San Rafael, CA

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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.

Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in San Rafael, California

There’s a lot to consider when choosing a financial advisor. It’s partly what makes the important decision so hard. To help you, we collected a number of factors you should take into account - fundamentals such as assets under management (AUM), fee basis and investment strategy. Then we put all the info together here for convenient comparing and contrasting. Start your search with this list of the top financial advisory firms that serve San Rafael, California. You can also use SmartAsset’s free financial advisor matching tool to connect 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 Private Ocean Private Ocean logo Find an Advisor

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$2,832,184,409 $2,000,000
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management 
  • Pension consulting services
  • Selection of other advisers (including private fund managers)

Minimum Assets

$2,000,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management 
  • Pension consulting services
  • Selection of other advisers (including private fund managers)
2 Ohana Advisors Ohana Advisors logo Find an Advisor

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$1,746,261,291 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisers (including private fund managers)

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Selection of other advisers (including private fund managers)
3 Polaris Wealth Advisory Group Polaris Wealth Advisory Group logo Find an Advisor

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$1,962,358,645 $500,000
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management

Minimum Assets

$500,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management

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4 Hutchinson Capital Management Hutchinson Capital Management logo Find an Advisor

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$721,204,511 $1 million
  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management

Minimum Assets

$1 million

Financial Services

  • Financial planning services
  • Portfolio management
5 Westhill Financial Advisors, Inc. Westhill Financial Advisors, Inc. logo Find an Advisor

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$561,738,310 No set account minimum
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services
  • Educational seminars/workshops

Minimum Assets

No set account minimum

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services
  • Educational seminars/workshops
6 O'Donnell Financial Services, LLC O'Donnell Financial Services, LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$302,396,301 No required minimum
  • Wrap asset management
  • Financial planning & consulting
  • Pension consulting

Minimum Assets

No required minimum

Financial Services

  • Wrap asset management
  • Financial planning & consulting
  • Pension consulting
7 Marin Wealth Advisors LLC Marin Wealth Advisors LLC logo Find an Advisor

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$310,772,480 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
8 Stewart Wealth Management, Inc. Stewart Wealth Management, Inc. logo Find an Advisor

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$303,457,601 $100,000
  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services

Minimum Assets

$100,000

Financial Services

  • Financial planning
  • Portfolio management
  • Pension consulting services
9 Fiduciary Financial Group Fiduciary Financial Group logo Find an Advisor

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$306,988,410 No required minimum
  • Asset Management
  • Financial planning
  • Retirement plan services

Minimum Assets

No required minimum

Financial Services

  • Asset Management
  • Financial planning
  • Retirement plan services
10 Capital Trust Advisors Capital Trust Advisors logo Find an Advisor

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$290,987,632 $500,000
  • Wealth management
  • Financial planning
  • Investment advisory

Minimum Assets

$500,000

Financial Services

  • Wealth management
  • Financial planning
  • Investment advisory

What We Use in Our Methodology

To find the top financial advisors in San Rafael, 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:

  • AUM
    Firms with more total assets under management are ranked higher.
  • Individual Client Count
    Firms who serve more individual clients (as opposed to institutional clients) are ranked higher.
  • Clients Per Advisor
    Firms with a lower ratio of clients per financial advisor are ranked higher.
  • Age of Firm
    Firms that have been in business longer are ranked higher.
  • Fee Structure
    Firms with a fee-only (as opposed to fee-based) compensation structure 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.

Private Ocean

Private Ocean, a fee-only financial advisor firm, is our top-rated firm in San Rafael. With additional offices in San Francisco and Seattle, Private Ocean has nine certified financial planners (CFPs) working out of its headquarters in San Rafael, as well as other accredited professionals, including a chartered financial analyst (CFA), a certified investment management analyst (CIMA), a certified private wealth advisor (CPWA), among others. 

With a $2 million investment requirement, a majority of Private Ocean's clients are high-net-worth individuals, although the firm also works with individuals who don't have a high net worth, as well as pension and profit-sharing plans and business entities. 

As a fee-only firm, Private Ocean makes its money from client fees, not commissions from selling financial products or insurance policies. 

Private Ocean Background

Founded in 2009, Private Ocean is primarily owned by Wealth Management Advisors. Gregory Friedman, owner of Wealth Management, serves as president and CEO of Private Ocean. He and three other people or entities own the biggest stakes in the firm, while some advisors have small stakes.

The practice offers investment management, retirement plan consulting and financial planning. It can advise on retirement, business succession, college funding, stock option planning, leaving a legacy and more.

Private Ocean Investment Strategy

In constructing client portfolios, Private Ocean primarily invests in mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and separate account managers, taking both long and short positions. Its methods of security analysis include fundamental analysis and technical analysis

Private Ocean generally follows a long-term investment strategy and avoids trying to time the market. The firm also notes on its website that more and more individuals are becoming interested in environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing. As the result, Private Ocean offers ESG portfolios for socially conscious clients. 

Ohana Advisors

Ohana Advisors, the No. 2 firm on our list, has been in business the longest and has the best client-to-advisor ratio on this list. While Ohana does not have a minimum account requirement, its clients typically have an average net worth of $100 million. New clients will generally be expected to have a net worth of at least $30 million within the short term. 

Its small client base is composed entirely of ultra-high-net-worth families, although it also serves revocable and irrevocable trusts, charitable trusts, family limited partnerships, limited liability companies, family foundations, and donor-advised funds.

The fee-only firm team includes one certified public accountant (CPA). 

Ohana Advisors Background

Ohana Advisors started as a sole proprietorship in 1993. In 2010, its owner, Dennis Covington, converted it to a limited liability company. He now owns it with Josh Richter, Edward John Schneider IV and David Schrader. 

The firm offers comprehensive family office and financial services, functioning as each client’s private family office.

Ohana Advisors Investment Strategy

The firm says that it “strives to create and implement an optimal, risk-managed, diversified strategy tailored for each client.” Typically, each client utilizes family-limited partnerships to co-invest across family entities. In constructing portfolios, Ohana employs diversification across geographies, asset classes, sub-sectors, and levels of expected return and risk. It notes that the “majority of the families’ portfolios also have a significant allocation to private investment funds.”

As of its most recent SEC filing, assets under its management were invested as:

  • 67% in securities issued by pooled investment vehicles (other than registered investment companies or business development companies)
  • 10% in cash and cash equivalents
  • 10% in private investments and charitable contributions
  • 9% in securities issued by registered investment companies (such as mutual funds) or business development companies
  • 6% in state and local bonds
  • 4% in exchange-traded equity securities

Polaris Wealth Advisory Group

Third on our list is Polaris Wealth Advisory Group, formerly known as Polaris Greystone Financial Group. PWAG has nine certified financial planners (CFPs) on staff, to go along with two chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and one certified trust and financial advisor (CTFA).

PWAG works primarily with individuals and high-net-worth individuals, but it offers services to pension and profit-sharing plans, corporations and other business entities. The firm requires its clients' accounts have a minimum aggregate value of $500,000.

PWAG is a fee-only firm, whose revenue comes from client fees, not sales commissions on third-party products, like securities or insurance policies. 

Polaris Wealth Advisory Group Background

Founded in 2011 as Polaris Wealth Advisors, the firm later changed its name to Polaris Greystone Financial Group and subsequently reorganized into two separate firms: Polaris Wealth Advisory Group and Greystone Financial Group. Today, chief investment officer Jeffrey Powell and Jeremy Witbeck own Polaris Wealth Advisory Group. 

The firm offers investment management and financial planning services, including education planning, estate planning, tax planning, business succession planning and more. 

Polaris Wealth Advisory Group Investment Strategy

PWAG bases its investment choices on individual clients after hearing about their financial goals and risk tolerance. The firm then matches a client with a particular strategy that best suits their profile as an investor, including approaches that are reliant on diversified ETFs and others that are driven by stocks or bonds. 

The firm believes that a well-managed portfolio is built using technical and fundamental methods of analysis, and by examining market sentiment and macroeconomic conditions. 

Hutchinson Capital Management

Hutchinson Capital Management is a fee-only advisory firm offering the services of financial planning and portfolio management. The firm requires a minimum account size of $1 million. The firm is a fee-only advisory and as such its advisors do not receive extra compensation for the sale of any securities. Hutchinson typically works with individuals, families, trusts, retirement plans and charitable organizations. 

Hutchinson Capital Management Background

Hutchinson was founded in 1995 and Steven K. Wilkes currently holds the title of CEO, Chief Compliance Officer and Portfolio Manager. Today, the team consists of four advisors who have obtained designations such as certified financial planners (CFP) and chartered financial analysts (CFA). 

Hutchinson Capital Management Investment Strategy

The firm believes in being a true financial partner through the creation of long-lasting partnerships with its clients. The firm uses a number of investments in its clients' portfolios. Some of these include exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds, bonds, stocks and more. The firm's research is completed internally and proprietary so it isn't disclosed. 

Westhill Financial Advisors, Inc.

Westhill Financial Advisors, a fee-based firm formerly known as Taddei, Lugwig & Associates, is next on our list. WFA works with individuals, high-net-worth individuals, trusts, estates, pension and profit-sharing plans, as well as corporations and other business entities. There is no minimum investment, although the minimum annual fee of $8,000 may not be cost-effective for small balances. Most accounts are managed on a discretionary basis, meaning advisors have full control over the accounts.

WFA's advisory team includes five chartered financial consultants (ChFCs), four certified financial planners (CFPs), two chartered life underwriters (CLUs), one accredited investment fiduciary (AIF) and one certified 401(k) professional.

Because many WFA advisors are also insurance agents who can earn commissions on certain transactions, WFA is considered a fee-based firm. Despite the potential conflict of interest created by commission-based compensation, the firm must act in its clients' best interests no matter what. 

Westhill Financial Advisors Background

Founded by Matt Taddei and Kirk Ludwig, the firm has been a registered investment advisor since 2010. In 2021, it rebranded and changed its name from Taddei, Ludgwig & Associates to Westhill Financial Advisors to "better describe our visionary perspective to financial planning and advice." They, along with Diane McCracken, who leads the qualified retirement team, own the business.

In addition to investment management, insurance and risk management services, the firm offers financial planning and pension consulting.

Westhill Financial Advisors Investment Strategy

WFA primarily uses strategic asset allocation, with core investments in index funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). It may also invest in actively managed funds when the opportunity arises. Portfolios are globally diversified. As part of its securities selection process, TLA’s methods of analysis include charting, fundamental, technical and cyclical analyses. 

According to its most recent SEC filings, assets under WFA's assets under management (AUM) were allocated as:

  • 86% in securities issued by registered investment companies (such as mutual funds) or business development companies
  • 8% in exchange-traded equity securities (like common stocks)
  • 6% in cash and cash equivalents

O'Donnell Financial Services

Founded in 2015, O’Donnell Financial Services is a fee-based firm with three offices in the Bay Area. The majority of O'Donnell Financial's clients are individuals without a high net worth, but the firm also serves high-net-worth investors, as well as pension and profit-sharing plans. 

O'Donnell is considered fee-based because its advisors earn commissions when selling financial products or insurance. But as fiduciaries, O'Donnell and its advisors must always act in the client's best interest. 

The firm doesn't impose an account balance minimum.

O’Donnell Financial Services Background

Greg O’Donnell is the founder, principal and CEO of the firm. According to the website, he also hosts a weekly radio show and has a series of books on retirement available for free download. 

The firm provides investment management services through a wrap fee program which charges one all-inclusive fee. In addition to wrap asset management, financial planning and pension consulting, the firm offers mortgage and insurance services.

O’Donnell Financial Services Investment Strategy

O’Donnell Financial’s methodology involves charting, cyclical, fundamental and technical analyses. In managing assets, it may use long-term purchases, short-term purchases, trading, short sales, margin transactions and option writing. As of its most recent SEC filings, assets under O’Donnell Financial’s management were invested as follows:

  • 79% in exchange-traded equity securities (like common stocks)
  • 11% in structured notes
  • 7% in securities issued by registered investment companies (such as mutual funds) or business development companies
  • 2% in cash and cash equivalents
  • 1% in investment-grade corporate bonds

Marin Wealth Advisors LLC

Marin Wealth Advisors is headquartered in San Rafael and has offices in San Francisco and Oakland. The team in San Rafael includes three certified financial planners (CFPs) and one chartered financial analyst (CFA). 

The majority of Marin clients are not considered high-net-worth individuals, although some are. The fee-only firm also serves trusts, estates, corporations, and non-profit organizations, as well as pension and profit-sharing plans. Investment accounts are managed on a discretionary basis only. There is no published account minimum.

Marin Wealth Advisors Background

In 2013, Robert Hunter reformed his 18-year-old financial advisory practice as a limited liability company and named it Marin Wealth Advisors. He remains its majority owner, while Gerald Fegler and James Castro also own stakes in the business.

The practice offers investment management and consulting. It also provides financial planning that includes retirement planning and education funding.

Marin Wealth Advisors Investment Strategy

Marin Wealth primarily uses strategic asset allocation, along with individual stock and bond selection. In its Form ADV, the firm notes that many of its clients are “investors who realized finding the best place to invest the money required more time and research than they had.” Its methods of security analysis include charting, fundamental, technical and cyclical methods of analysis. 

The most recent SEC data shows that assets under the practice’s management were allocated as: 

  • 78% in exchange-traded equity securities (like common stocks)
  • 18% in securities issued by registered investment companies (such as mutual funds) or business development companies
  • 2% in securities issued by pooled investment vehicles (other than registered investment companies)
  • 1% in cash and cash equivalents
  • 1% in investment-grade corporate bonds

Stewart Wealth Management, Inc.

With a minimum investment of $100,000, Stewart Wealth Management (SWM) serves far more individuals who don’t have a high net worth than those who do (about five to one). Its team includes two certified financial planners (CFPs) and one retirement income certified professional (RICP). 

The firm also offers services to pension and profit-sharing plans, retirement plan participants, foundations, institutions and business entities. The great majority of accounts are managed on a discretionary basis, which means clients authorize SWM to make changes to their investments without getting prior approval.

SWM is a fee-only firm that's compensated through asset-based fees, hourly charges and/or fixed fees -- not commissions. 

Stewart Wealth Management Background

Benjamin Stewart registered the firm with the SEC in 2007. He is the sole owner and serves as its CEO and chief compliance officer. Prior to founding SWM, Stewart served as a vice president at Wachovia Securities for seven years. 

SWM offers financial planning, and investment advisory services, as well as pension and qualified retirement plan consulting.

Stewart Wealth Management Investment Strategy

SWM aims to build low-cost, tax-efficient portfolios with consistent performance over the long term. It does this by investing in institutional-class stock mutual funds with low expense ratios, and at times, low-cost exchange-traded funds (ETFs), bond funds, individual fixed income securities and other products. When appropriate, SWM may also recommend real estate investments.

According to its most recent SEC filings, assets under SWM’s management were allocated as:

  • 71% in exchange-traded equity securities (like common stocks)
  • 15% in private equity real estate
  • 12% in cash and cash equivalents
  • 1% investment-grade corporate bonds
  • 1% U.S. government/agency bonds

Fiduciary Financial Group

Fiduciary Financial Group is a fee-only advisory firm offering the services of asset management, financial planning and retirement plan services. The firm typically provides investment advice to individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pension and profit-sharing plans, corporations and other business entities. There is no account minimum amount required to work with Fiduciary Financial. 

Fiduciary Financial Group Background

Fiduciary Financial Group was founded in 2016 and has four partners today: Richard Davey, Trevor Scotto, Tom Vogelheim and Shayne Cooper. The firm has a total of six advisors on the team who have collectively obtained designations such as certified financial planners (CFP) and certified public accountants (CPA). 

Fiduciary Financial Group Investment Strategy

Fiduciary Financial Group creates investment strategies for each client that are unique to the consultations and conversations with that individual client and it allows the client to change their objectives at any time during the relationship. An investment strategy for a client's portfolio may include long-term purchases, short-term purchases, stock trading or option writing. The risk tolerance of the client is weighed heavily in making investment decisions. 

Capital Trust Advisors

Capital Trust Advisors provides the services of wealth management, investment advisory and financial planning throughout the San Rafael area, requiring an account minimum of at least $500,000 to get started. Capital Trust is a fee-based firm and as such its advisors may receive commissions when certain securities are chosen or sold. This can create a potential conflict of interest but the firm is bound by a fiduciary duty to put the client and their needs first.  

Capital Trust Advisors Background

Capital Trust Advisors was founded in 2000 with a team that averages more than 27 years of investment management experience. Collectively, the team has some designations such as chartered financial analysts (CFA) and certified financial planners (CFP). 

Capital Trust Advisors Investment Strategy

The firm utilizes fundamental, technical or cyclical techniques to analyze potential investments or to formulate the right investment advice for each client's unique needs. The types of investment products that a client of Capital Trust may have includes stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

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.