Finding a Top Financial Advisor Firm in Tennessee
You’re not about to entrust your wealth with just anyone. But with so many financial advisors out there, how do you choose one? To help you narrow the field, we did some of the initial research for you, collecting a number of important factors - fundamentals such as assets under management (AUM), fees 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 advisor firms in Tennessee. Then use SmartAsset’s free financial advisor matching tool to connect with up to three advisors in your area.
|Rank||Financial Advisor||Assets Managed||Minimum Assets||Financial Services||More Information|
|1||Virtue Capital Management, LLC Find an Advisor||$700,319,737||$1,000|| || |
|2||Legacy Wealth Management, Inc Find an Advisor||$1,737,536,766||$500,000|| || |
|3||Patriot Investment Management Group, Inc. Find an Advisor||$1,333,303,318||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|4||Southport Capital, Inc. Find an Advisor||$824,040,738||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|5||Waddell & Associates Find an Advisor||$943,123,400||Varies based on account type|| || |
Minimum AssetsVaries based on account type
|6||SageGuard Financial Group, LLC Find an Advisor||$338,000,000||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|7||Delta Asset Management, LLC Find an Advisor||$1,251,198,296||No set account minimum|| || |
Minimum AssetsNo set account minimum
|8||Rather & Kittrell, Inc. Find an Advisor||$1,057,573,646||$500,000|| || |
|9||Telarray Find an Advisor||$978,147,753||$500,000|| || |
|10||Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners, LLC Find an Advisor||$484,854,709||Varies based on account type|| || |
Minimum AssetsVaries based on account type
How We Found the Top Financial Advisor Firms in Tennessee
To find the top financial advisors in Tennessee, 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:
Virtue Capital Management
Virtue Capital Management is the first firm on our list of Tennessee's top financial advisors. This large firm works with a ton of individual clients, the majority of which do not have a high net worth. Other clients include high-net-worth individuals, pensions, profit sharing plans, charities and other businesses. The firm has a $1,000 minimum account size requirement.
Since some advisors can earn commisisons from selling financial products, Virtue is considered fee-based. Despite this potential conflict of interest, the firm is a fiduciary. This makes it legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients at all times.
Virtue Capital Management Background
Virtue Capital Management was founded in 2013. It registered with the SEC as an investment advisor one year later, after previously being registered with a number of individual states. Virtue Financial Holdings, LLC is the firm's 100% owner, though Jeremy Rettich, Matthew Rettich and James Webb own Virtue Financial Holdings. Jeremy and Matthew are the firm's control persons.
Virtue provides clients with asset management and financial planning services.
Virtue Capital Management Investment Strategy
Virtue Capital Management's asset management services are provided on a continuous and tailored basis. Advisors work with clients one-on-one to determine their financial situation, including factors such as risk tolerance, liquidity needs and overall investment objectives. From there, individualized investment strategies can be created.
Advisors at Virtue use tactical, strategic and dynamic methods of analysis to help inform investment decisions. They may use a variety of data sources and invest client assets across a wide range of securities.
Legacy Wealth Management
Second on our list is Legacy Wealth Management. Its team includes certified financial planners (CFPs), MBAs, certified financial analysts (CFA), JDs and lots more (Advisors may have multiple accreditations).
At the fee-only Memphis firm, most of the individual client base are people who do not have a high net worth. Legacy Wealth also serves pensions, profit-sharing plans, corporations, charities and municipal government entities. The minimum investment is generally $500,000.
Legacy Wealth Management Background
John Ueleke founded the firm in 1982 as one of the first fee-only firms in the area. Although he’s no longer part of the company, Legacy Wealth Management still operates on his founding principles of clients, commitment to honesty and integrity, compassion and culture. The practice is currently owned by its employees, including President and CEO Jim Isaacs and Managing Director Duncan Miller.
Legacy Wealth offers portfolio management and financial planning. It can provide guidance in such areas as cash flow, debt management, budgeting, risk management, education planning, tax planning, retirement planning, early retirement-offer evaluations, deferred compensation planning and estate planning.
Legacy Wealth Management Investing Strategy
Legacy Wealth Management is a proponent of globally diversified portfolios, stating on its website its belief that “a diversified portfolio is a sound portfolio.” Most client portfolios are invested in stocks, bonds, mutual funds and ETFs. Services tend to be tailored to the individual financial situation of each client.
Patriot Investment Management Group
Located in Knoxville, Patriot Investment Management Group is next on our Tennessee list. Its team includes several certified financial planners (CFPs), along with certifications such as certified public accountant (CPA) and chartered financial analyst (CFA). (Advisors may have multiple professional accreditations.)
With no minimum investment required, the vast majority of the fee-only firm’s clients are non-high-net-worth individuals. It also serves pension and profit-sharing plans and charitable organizations.
Patriot Investment Management Group Background
Patriot Investment Management Group has been providing investment advisory services since 1992. It’s principally owned by Brad Bower, the firm’s president and CEO.
Patriot Investment Management describes itself as "quarterback" for its clients, coordinating efforts between its accountants, attorneys and any other professionals with whom the firm works. The firm offers asset management, as well as financial planning and wealth management. The latter may include:
- Risk management and insurance analysis
- Asset allocation and portfolio management
- Tax planning
- Education planning
- Retirement planning
- Estate planning and trust management
Patriot Investment Management Group Investment Strategy
Patriot Investment Management Group says that it believes in taking a "conservative, prudent approach to investing, and earning attractive, risk-adjusted returns over the long term." It emphasizes diversification and asset allocation. It eschews market timing, and argues that actively managed funds have historically underperformed and resulted in higher fees. The firm primarily builds client portfolios with index funds, which align with the firm's emphasis on cost efficiency.
Southport Capital is the next firm on our list of the top financial advisory firms in the state of Tennessee. This firm has quite a large client base, made up mostly of individuals. Of these individuals, the majority do not have a high net worth. The firm's institutional client base is much smaller and is made up of a few pensions, profit sharing plans, charities and corportations.
Southport doesn't have a set account minimum. It is a fee-based firm though, as advisors can earn commissions from the sale of certain financial products. This is a potential conflict of interest, but the firm is still a fiduciary and is legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients at all times.
Southport Capital Background
Southport Capital has been in business for about 20 years, as it was founded in 2001. The firm has been an SEC-registered investment advisor ever since. Southport is owned by some of its own employees, including John J. Woods, James W. Woods, Jr., James C. Parker, and Michael J. Mooney. Overall, the team doesn't boast very many financial advisory certifications like certified financial planner (CFP).
Southport's advisory services include financial planning, financial consulting, portfolio management and general consulting services.
Southport Capital Investment Strategy
Southport Capital, like many other advisory businesses, tailors its investment strategies to the needs of its clinets on an individual basis. Advisors work with clients to develop financial blueprints, taking into account such factors as a client's tolerance for risk and liquidity needs, as well as overall investment objectives.
Advisors at Southport use both technical and cyclical analysis to help inform their investment decisions. Advisors use a variety of research methods to guide them as well. When it comes to investing, they use long and short-term trading, margin transactions and options writing.
Waddell & Associates
Fee-only Waddell & Associates has a main office in Memphis and a branch in Nashville. The team of advisors at the firm includes a handful of advisory certifications, including certified financial planner (CFP) and chartered financial analyst (CFA).
About a quarter of the individual client base is high-net-worth individuals. The rest are non-high-net-worth individuals. The firm also serves corporate pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable institutions, foundations, endowments and corporations. There is a $500,000 investment minimum, though the robo-advisor account minimum is $5,000.
Waddell & Associates Background
CEO David Waddell founded his namesake firm in 1986. He and two other employees have small stakes, but the majority owner is Focus Financial Partners, LLC, a public company traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market.
The practice offers investment management, robo-advisor services, financial planning and consulting. It also provides employee benefit retirement plan services to 401(k) pension plan trustees.
Waddell & Associates Investment Strategy
As a client of Waddell & Associates, you’re likely to have your money managed in a model portfolio. This means the firm has already developed several template portfolios to fit specific financial needs and situations. This differs from some firms that will create your portfolio completely from scratch. The primary investments made at Waddell are no-load mutual funds, ETFs, individual securities, money market funds and CDs, corporate bonds, U.S. treasury bonds and municipal bonds.
For those with less than $500,000, the firm offers access to its robo-advising platform called W&Ai. This is the Schwab Intelligent Portfolio. Trading and rebalancing is determined by an algorithm. Your money is managed digitally, resulting in lower fees and minimums.
SageGuard Financial Group
SageGuard Financial Group is the next financial advisory firm on our list of the top financial advisory firms in Tennessee. This large firm has a client base made up entirely of individuals. Of these individual clients, more than 90% are non-high-net-worth individuals. However, a significant chunk of the firm's assets come from high-net-worth clients.
SageGuard has no set account minimum. It is also a fee-based firm, as some advisors may receive commissions from the sale of insurance products to clients. Despite this potential conflict of interest, the firm and its advisors are legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients.
SageGuard Financial Group Background
SageGuard Financial Group was founded in 2009. After originally being registered with a number of state jurisdictions, SageGuard registered with the SEC as an investment advisor in 2016. SageGuard as its known today took over it's predecessor firm, SageGuard Investment Advisory Services, LLC, in 2016. It is principally owned by Darwin D. Johnson and Paula C. Johnson.
SageGuard's services typically include just investment supervisory services, portfolio management and financial planning.
SageGuard Financial Group Investment Strategy
SageGuard Financial Group tailors its investment strategies to the needs of its clients, though all of its services are available to every client. Advisors work with clients so that they can determine their tolerance for risk, financial situation, tax situation and other information to create an investment policy statement.
Advisors at SageGuard use fundamental and technical analysis to inform investment decisions. More specific investment strategies tend to use strategic and tactical asset allocation. The firm may use different securities depending on the type of growth model.
Delta Asset Management
The next firm up on our list of the top financial advisors in the state of Tennessee is Delta Asset Management, a large, Memphis-based firm. This firm works with a pretty diverse client base. Of its individual clients, about 40% are high-net-worth individuals. It also works with a number of institutional clients, such as pensions, profit sharing plans, charitable organizations, government entities, businesses and corporations.
Delta does not have a minimum account size requirement. It is a fee-only firm, so advisors don't earn any commissions that could create a conflict of interest.
Delta Asset Management Background
Delta Asset Management was founded in 1989, making it one of the oldest firms on our list. While it's been in business ever since, it only became an SEC-registered investment advisor in 2001. The firm is owned by managing directors Myron Mall, Edward Taylor and David Smith as well as Hightower Advisors, LLC.
Delta provides its clients with investment advisory services such as portfolio management and financial planning services.
Delta Asset Management Investment Strategy
Delta Asset Management works with clients to provide tailored investment services. This process involves meeting with clients to determine their risk tolerance, time horizon, liquidity needs and overall financial situation. Advisors form a model portfolio that they use as an allocation guide.
The firm primarily uses long-term purchases to help drive growth in client portfolios. Advisors may use a wide range of different investments, depending upon the specific client and their situation and goals.
Rather & Kittrell
Located in Knoxville, Rather & Kittrell specializes in serving those who are going through transitions. Its clients include individuals, families, businesses, banks, pensions, profit-sharing plans, charities, state governments and businesses. Less than half of its individual clients are high net worth individuals, with the rest being non-high-net-worth. The fee-based firm has an account minimum of $500,000.
The team at Rather & Kittrell includes a handful of certified financial planners (CFPs). Other certifications include certified public accountant (CPA), certified investment management analyst (CIMA) and accredited investment fiduciary (AIF).
Rather & Kittrell Background
Rather & Kittrell started in 2000 as a “two-desk business.” It’s indirectly owned (through RK Holdings, Inc.) by the firm's co-founders, Lytle Rather and Christian Kittrell. Both still work at the practice. Jeff Hall, Matt Grabeel and Greg McMurry are minority owners of RK Holdings, Inc.
Investment management services are on a fee basis, but advisors who are registered representatives of broker-dealers or insurance agents may receive commissions in their other capacities. In addition to portfolio management and insurance, the firm offers financial planning and consulting.
Rather & Kittrell Investment Strategy
For its discretionary accounts, Rather & Kittrell typically relies on its model allocations, which offer several different risk profiles that range from a focus on preserving capital to achieving aggressive growth. The firm says that its core investment strategy consists of "globally diversified, multi-asset class model portfolios designed to deliver expected long-term returns within well-defined ranges of risk." In accordance with modern portfolio theory's assertion that the markets are efficient, the firm primarily uses passive investments in entire asset classes, including managed mutual funds and ETFs.
Telarray is a fee-only, Memphis-based firm that's been in business since 2005. The team includes certified public accountants (CPAs), personal financial specialists (PFSs), chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and a single certified financial planner (CFP).
Telarray serves both non-high-net-worth individuals and high-net-worth individuals. It has a $500,000 investment minimum, which may be waived under certain circumstances. The practice also serves charitable institutions, profit-sharing plans, pensions and businesses.
Founders John “Cliff” Paessler and Michael “Andy” Shaul own Telarray, along with other employees, including Richard Paessler. The elder Paessler serves as Telarray’s chief investment manager.
Telarray Investment Strategy
Telarray advisors primarily use strategic asset allocation with global diversification. It constructs portfolios with passive index funds, but when deemed appropriate, may employ a more active approach termed Telarray Trend (T2T), which involves underweighting or overweighting asset classes relative to their target weights. The firm does not use alternative asset classes such as managed futures, hedge funds, privately held real estate, precious metals or commodities.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners
Rounding out our list of the top financial advisory firms in Tennessee is the aptly named Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners. This large firm works almost exclusively with individual clients. Though the vast majority of these clients do not have a high net worth, most of the firm's assets come from its high-net-worth clients. The firm also works with a small number of banking institutions and charities.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners carries a minimum account size requirement of $50,000, though certain strategies and portfolios may carry different minimums. The firm is also fee-based, since certain advisors can earn commissions from selling financial products. Despite this potential conflict of interest, the firm is a fiduciary and is legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners Background
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners was founded in 2011, so it's actually one of the younger firms on our list. Despite being in business since 2011, it only became an SEC-registered investment advisor in 2015. The firm has three managing members. The first is chief compliance officer Jeffrey B. Foster. Charles J. Sweat and Scott B. Fisher are the other two.
Tennessee Valley provides investment portfolio management and financial planning services through a number of different investment management programs. Many of these programs have different minimum account size requirements.
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners Investment Strategy
Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners works with clients to determine their investment objectives and overall financial situations so that they can provide tailored investment management services. Advisory services are provided on an ongoing basis.
The firm and its advisors use charting, cyclical analysis, fundamental analysis and technical analysis to help figure out which investments to use in client portfolios. Investment strategies include long and short-term purchases, trading, short sales and margin transactions.