Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Santa Barbara, California
If you're looking for a financial advisor in Santa Barbara, California, our roundup of the city's top financial advisor firms can help simplify your search. Below, you’ll find each firm listed in descending order by the value of its assets under management (AUM). We also include information detailing each firm’s typical clientele, account minimum, fee schedule and more. SmartAsset has also developed a financial advisor matching tool that can pair you with a financial advisor in your area based on your personal goals and needs.
|Rank||Financial Advisor||Assets Managed||Minimum Assets||Financial Services||More Information|
|1||Mission Wealth Management, LP Find an Advisor||$1,884,007,000||$1,000,000|| || |
|2||West Coast Financial, LLC Find an Advisor||$948,198,992||$1,000,000|| || |
|3||Arlington Financial Advisors, LLC Find an Advisor||$513,203,000||None|| || |
|4||Trinity Capital Management, LLC Find an Advisor||$262,230,220||None|| || |
|5||Ariadne Wealth Management, LP Find an Advisor||$249,173,034||$3,000,000 per household|| || |
Minimum Assets$3,000,000 per household
|6||Omega Financial Group, LLC Find an Advisor||$210,348,238||None, $10,000 minimum fee|| || |
Minimum AssetsNone, $10,000 minimum fee
|7||Pacific Wealth Strategies Group, Inc. Find an Advisor||$171,107,944||None|| || |
|8||Avalan, LLC Find an Advisor||$169,125,000||None|| || |
|9||Curtis Advisory Group, LLC Find an Advisor||$149,695,380||$500,000|| || |
|10||Castle Wealth Planning Find an Advisor||$135,727,424||$500,000|| || |
How We Found the Top Financial Advisor Firms in Santa Barbara, California
We limited our search to advisor firms that are registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and which have their principal place of business in Santa Barbara. We only considered SEC-registered companies because such firms have a fiduciary duty to always act in their clients’ best interest. To further pare down our list, we only considered firms that are free of disclosures, offer financial planning services and manage individual accounts. The final list is ordered according to each firm’s assets under management (AUM).
Mission Wealth Management, LP
Mission Wealth Management, LP is the first firm on our list, with more than $1.8 billion in assets under management (AUM). The firm’s client base is a mix of mostly individuals and high-net-worth individuals, with some charitable organizations as well.
As a fee-based firm, certain advisors at Mission may earn commissions based on certain transactions. While this creates the potential for a conflict of interest, the firm will always act in its clients’ best interests due to its fiduciary duty.
Mission Wealth Management specializes in financial planning, portfolio management for both individuals and businesses, consulting for retirement plans and the selection of independent investment advisors. The firm has a high minimum account size of $1 million.
Mission Wealth Management Background
Mission Wealth Management was founded in 2000, and it currently has eight partners. The two majority stakeholders are Seth Streeter and Brad Stark, and the other owners are Matthew Adams, Geoffrey Gaggs, Andrew Penso, Dannell Stuart, Tricia Fahnoe and Steve Caltagirone.
Mission charges a percentage of your AUM for its management fees, with the exact rate varying from 0.40% to 1.00% depending on the value of your assets. These fees cover both investment advisory services and financial planning.
Mission Wealth Management Investment Philosophy
Mission Wealth Management typically makes recommendations on a wide variety of investment securities, including exchange-traded funds (ETFs), institutional mutual funds, dimensional funds, multi-managed funds, common and preferred stocks, corporate and government bonds, municipal tax-free bonds, certificates of deposit (CDs) and cash instruments, variable insurance contracts, existing client holdings and several alternative investments.
Although the firm may make recommendations on any of the above, its primary investments are ETFs, mutual funds, institutional funds and individual securities. Mission Wealth Management doesn’t have custody of any client assets, typically working with a custodian like Fidelity or Charles Schwab. This practice is quite common across the financial advisor industry.
West Coast Financial, LLC
West Coast Financial, LLC is a fee-only firm that opened for business back in 1983. It currently works with individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pooled investment vehicles, pension plans, charitable organizations and businesses. The firm has roughly $948 million in assets under management (AUM).
The firm offers portfolio management services for both individuals and businesses, as well as financial planning, consulting and selection of other advisors. Like Mission Wealth Management, West Coast Financial will typically only accept new clients that have at least $1 million in assets.
West Coast Financial Background
West Coast Financial was founded in 1983 under the name E. David Yossem, Inc. Its owners are E. David Yossem, Steven A. Weintraub, Brian D. Lloyd, David C. Gore and BSD Partners, a limited partnership. The firm employs 22 advisors, seven of whom are based in Santa Barbara. Of these seven, four are certified financial planners (CFPs) and two are chartered financial analysts (CFAs).
The firm typically calculates portfolio management fees as a percentage of AUM, with the rate ranging from 0.20% to 1.00%. These fees will likely also include financial planning fees. For consulting or retainer services, the firm will charge a negotiable, flat fee based on the complexity of your situation.
West Coast Financial Investment Philosophy
West Coast Financial approaches every client portfolio uniquely, as it believes every client has a distinctive financial situation. It typically invests in money market instruments, bonds, preferred stocks, common stocks, real estate investment trusts (REITs) and mutual funds where appropriate.
When purchasing securities for client portfolios, the firm expects to hold them for several years. The primary exception to this rule is if the firm is rebalancing a portfolio back to its target asset allocation.
Arlington Financial Advisors, LLC
Arlington Financial Advisors, LLC has been an investment advisor in California since 2016. Its more than 400 clients include individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pension plans and other investment advisors. The fee-based firm has roughly $510 million in assets under management (AUM).
Arlington Financial Advisors provides portfolio management and financial planning services to its clients. Additionally, the firm may offer consulting to retirement plans and may occasionally allocate client assets to independent money managers. The firm doesn’t have an account minimum for individual clients.
Certain advisors at the firm are also registered representatives of a broker-dealer, meaning they may earn commissions for conducting certain securities transactions. Additionally, some advisors are licensed to sell insurance products, which may also generate commissions. This creates a potential conflict of interest, but the firm is bound by fiduciary duty to always act in its clients’ best interests.
Arlington Financial Advisors Background
Arlington Financial Advisors was formed in 2010, but it has operated as an investment advisor since 2016. It’s owned by partners John A. Lorenz, Dianne Duva, Arthur Swalley and R. Wells Hughes and managing partner Joseph Weiland. Among the firm’s six advisors, you’ll find three certified financial planners (CFPs) and one certified investment management analyst (CIMA).
Arlington Financial Advisors charges its clients portfolio management fees as a percentage of their AUM. Your exact financial situation will dictate what rate you pay, but it won’t exceed 1.36%. Financial planning fees can be a flat fee between $1,500 and $10,000 or an hourly fee of $350 or less.
Arlington Financial Advisors Investment Philosophy
Arlington Financial Advisors seeks to provide a diversified portfolio for each client with an asset allocation that aligns with their investing goals, risk tolerance, cash flow needs and time horizon. After establishing the appropriate asset allocation, the firm typically rebalances on an annual basis.
The firm invests in a standard range of securities, such as individual stocks, bonds, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and options. The firm will also consider other public and private securities if it deems it appropriate for the client’s financial outlook.
Trinity Capital Management, LLC
Trinity Capital Management, LLC employs five financial advisors and has been in business since 2006. It has just over $262 million in assets under management (AUM), and it serves more than 275 clients. The majority of the firm’s clients are individuals, but it also manages money for high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations and businesses.
Trinity Capital Management provides fee-only investment management services and advanced financial planning. The firm doesn’t have a minimum account size, but it has a minimum annual fee of $3,000. This could make its services cost prohibitive for some clients.
Trinity Capital Management Background
Trinity Capital Management was formed in 2006, and its principal owners are Fredric B. Fisher and Andrew Y. Bucher. Fisher is the firm’s president and chief compliance officer (CCO), and Bucher is the chief investment officer (CIO). Of the firm’s five advisors, three are certified financial planners (CFPs) and one is a chartered financial analyst (CFA).
For investment management services, the firm usually charges a percentage of your assets between 0.45% and 1.20%. Advanced financial planning fees at the firm come at a flat rate between $500 and $20,000. However, if your investment management fees come out to $10,000, the firm will typically waive its financial planning fees.
Trinity Capital Management Investment Philosophy
Trinity Capital Management invests in no-load mutual funds, corporate and government bonds, tradable certificates of deposit (CDs) and cash management or money market funds. The firm centers its investing approach around modern portfolio theory, and it prefers to adopt a long-term perspective whenever possible.
Trinity believes that global diversification is a crucial aspect of long-term investing success. The aim is to minimize volatility while accessing sustainable market gains.
Ariadne Wealth Management, LP
Ariadne Wealth Management, LP is a four-person firm that’s been doing business since 2008. It is a fee-only firm that offers advisory services to under 100 clients. These clients include high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations, insurance companies and businesses.
The firm provides a range of services including asset management, financial planning and consulting for retirement plans. Ariadne has the highest account minimum of any firm on this list at $3 million per household.
Ariadne Wealth Management Background
Ariadne Wealth Management was founded in 2008 by Gene Dongieux. The Dongieux Family Trust is the firm’s sole owner. There’s a certified financial planner (CFP) and a chartered financial analyst (CFA) working at this firm.
Fees for wealth management services are calculated as a percentage of your assets under management (AUM). The exact percentage you receive is dependent on the specifics of your finances, but it won’t exceed 1.00% of your AUM. This fee incorporates financial planning and ongoing asset management services together.
Ariadne Wealth Management Investment Philosophy
Ariadne Wealth Management uses a combination of quantitative and qualitative analyses to come to the right investment strategy for each client. Quantitatively, the firm examines large amounts of data such as historical returns, current returns, regression analysis and more. Qualitatively, advisors rely on years of experience to spot scenarios where the data might be misleading.
The firm may consider a wide range of securities depending on the client’s objectives and risk tolerance. However, it will primarily recommend exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds and individual stocks and bonds.
Omega Financial Group, LLC
Omega Financial Group, LLC has grown to manage roughly $210 million in assets over a decade of operation. The firm’s client base is made up of mostly individuals, but it works with high-net-worth individuals, pension plans and charitable organizations as well.
Some Omega advisors are licensed to sell insurance products, and they may earn additional commissions for these sales. This makes the firm fee-based and creates the potential for a conflict of interest. Despite this, the firm has a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of its clients at all times.
The firm provides asset management, financial planning and consulting services to its clients. The firm doesn’t impose a minimum account size, but it does charge a minimum annual fee of $10,000 for investment advisory services. This fee minimum could price clients with a lower net worth out of Omega’s services.
Omega Financial Group Background
Omega Financial Group was first established in 2009. Dylan B. Minor is an 80% owner of the firm and Bryan W. Reinhard owns the remaining 20%. The firm has four total advisors. Three of them are certified financial planners (CFPs), three are chartered financial consultants (ChFCs), two are chartered life underwriters (CLUs) and one is a chartered retirement plan counselor (CRPC).
Fees for investment advisory services are either 1.00% of your assets under management (AUM) or $10,000, whichever is greater. Financial planning fees can be hourly, ranging from $150 to $950, or they can be flat, ranging from $1,500 to $20,000.
Omega Financial Group Investment Philosophy
Omega Financial Group often invests in a diversified collection of exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds, stocks, bonds, real estate, commodities and alternative investments when constructing client portfolios.
The firm tailors its investment strategy to each client’s risk tolerance, liquidity needs and time horizon. The firm takes these factors into account and uses them to create an asset allocation and investment strategy that’s best equipped to produce returns over the long term.
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group, Inc.
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group, Inc. is a fee-based firm with four advisors serving 263 clients who own $171 million in assets. Founded in 2007, the firm works with individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations and corporations.
The firm is fee-based, which means advisors may earn commissions for conducting certain transactions, like insurance product sales. Although this presents a potential conflict of interest, the firm is also bound by fiduciary duty to act in your best interest at all times.
The firm provides clients with financial planning, investment management and the selection of outside money managers. Like most firms, Pacific Wealth Strategies Group does not act as a custodian of any client assets. The firm doesn’t have any sort of account minimum.
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group Background
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group was established in 2007 by Jefferey D. Brookshire and Erin J. Neil. Brookshire is the principal owner of the firm, as well as its president and chief compliance officer (CCO). Neil is the firm’s vice president.
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group has four advisors on its staff, three of whom are based in Santa Barbara. One is a certified financial planner (CFP) and one is an accredited investment fiduciary (AIF).
For portfolio management services, the firm charges a percentage of your assets that can range up to 2.00%. Financial planning fees are typically charged as an hourly fee of $350 or as a flat fee between $1,750 and $10,000.
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group Investment Philosophy
Pacific Wealth Strategies Group provides recommendations on a wide range of investments. These include no-load and load-waived mutual fund shares, exchange-listed securities, securities traded over the counter, fixed income securities, closed-end funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs), foreign issues, warrants, corporate debt securities, commercial paper, certificates of deposit (CDs) and more.
The firm also prioritizes asset allocation over individual security selection during portfolio construction. To determine the proper asset allocation, advisors will consider the client’s current financial situation, future time horizon, thoughts about the market and family dynamics.
Avalan, LLC has been doing business in the Santa Barbara area since 2011. The firm currently has just over $169 million in assets under management (AUM) from its almost 200 clients. Its client base is a mix of individuals, high-net-worth individuals, pension plans and charitable organizations. The firm doesn’t have a minimum account size.
Certain advisors at Avalan are licensed to sell insurance products, which could result in commissions. The receipt of these commissions creates a potential conflict of interest. However, Avalan must abide by fiduciary duty and act in clients’ best interests no matter what.
The firm offers asset management and an automated investing program, along with financial planning and consulting services. Financial planning can cover, among other topics, retirement planning, estate planning, charitable gift planning, education planning, corporate and personal tax planning, real estate analysis, mortgage/debt analysis, insurance analysis and lines of credit evaluation.
Avalan first opened its doors in 2011. The firm’s principal owners are Richard Schuette and Kathryn Courain. The firm has three advisors: Schuette, Courain and Aaron Ritter. All three advisors hold a certified financial planner (CFP) designation.
For asset management services, Avalan charges a negotiable percentage of your AUM that won’t exceed 3.00%. If you take part in the automated investing program, you’ll be charged an annual fee of 0.50% of your invested assets. Financial planning fees are charged as either a fixed or an hourly fee. Fixed fees range from $500 to $2,500 and hourly fees range from $250 to $500. Fees at Avalan aren’t normally negotiable.
Avalan Investment Philosophy
When creating client portfolios, Avalan generally invests in a standard range of securities. These could include individual stocks or bonds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), options, mutual funds and other public and private securities.
Every client of the firm will receive a portfolio that’s globally diversified across several different asset classes. This fits in with the firm’s preference for long-term, disciplined investing over speculation and active management.
Curtis Advisory Group, LLC
Curtis Advisory Group, LLC is a wealth advisory firm established in 2009. Over the years, its client base has grown to about 80 members that have just under $150 million in assets under management (AUM) collectively. The largest portion of the firm’s clients are individuals, but it also works with high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations and businesses.
The firm offers standard portfolio management, as well as investing oversight for externally managed accounts. Further, it provides services including an automated investing program (through Charles Schwab), financial planning and consulting for pension plans. The firm generally requires at least $500,000 in investable assets, but it may waive this minimum at its discretion.
Curtis Advisory Group is a fee-only firm.
Curtis Advisory Group Background
Curtis Advisory Group was established in 2009 by Ryan Earl Curtis. Curtis remains the principal owner of firm, and he’s also one of the firm’s two advisors, along with Joshua D. Hayes. Hayes is currently studying to become a certified financial planner (CFP).
For investment management services, the firm will typically charge between 0.10% and 1.00% of your managed assets. Where the exact percentage falls within that range will depend on the market value of your assets. For financial planning, the fixed fee generally falls between $1,800 and $5,000.
Curtis Advisory Group Investment Philosophy
Each client of Curtis Advisory Group will open the investment process off by completing a “Client Questionnaire Survey,” which provides the firm with crucial information about your personal investing goals, time horizon and risk tolerance. From there, the firm will assemble investing recommendations that fit in with the unique variables you’ve presented.
Curtis Advisory Group subscribes to modern portfolio theory (MPT), which is the attempt to maximize investment return for a given level or risk. A carefully built asset allocation and global diversification are usually integrated as part of an MPT-based strategy.
Castle Wealth Planning
Castle Wealth Planning is a one-man advisory firm that’s been doing business since 2006. It provides fee-only advisory services largely to individuals without a high net worth. The firm also offers services to high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations and businesses.
Asset management and financial planning services are the firm's primary services. The latter can cover budgeting, cash flow analysis, investment planning, retirement planning, tax planning, risk management, employee benefit analysis, education funding, charitable gift planning and estate planning. The firm generally imposes an account minimum of $500,000 for new clients.
Castle Wealth Planning Background
Castle Wealth Planning was founded in 2006 by Nathan Cultice. Cultice is the firm’s sole owner and advisor, while also serving as the chief compliance officer (CCO). Cultice holds a certified financial planner (CFP) designation.
Fees for investment management services are 1.00% for assets beneath $1 million and 0.50% for assets above $1 million. For financial planning services, the firm charges either an hourly rate not to exceed $250 or a flat fee that will be less than the hours needed to complete the services, multiplied by 250.
Castle Wealth Planning Investment Philosophy
Castle Wealth Planning invests primarily in individual stocks and individual bonds, as well as mutual funds to a lesser extent. The firm may invest in a larger share of mutual funds for clients with smaller accounts, as it would be difficult to achieve the proper level of diversification with just individual stocks. For larger accounts, though, the firm typically invests in 90% individual stocks and bonds and 10% mutual funds and bond funds.
The firm believes strongly in a buy-and-hold approach that’s based on fundamental analysis. Fundamental analysis involves analyzing a company’s financial documents, past management, and the overall economy, then gauging the company’s intrinsic value to determine if the market is adequately pricing the company’s stock. The firm seeks to identify good stocks that are undervalued, then purchasing them with the intent to hold for several years.