Best Financial Advisors in Charlotte 2022 - MagnifyMoney
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Best Financial Advisors in Charlotte for 2022

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If you’re on the hunt for the best financial advisors in Charlotte, we’re here to help you sift through the myriad options in the largest city in North Carolina. Finding the right advisorin the Piedmont region comes down to figuring out what your personal financial situation requires, which means understanding your needs and goals as well as your budget.

Beyond that, you’ll also need to compare different firms and their key data points, which is where this guide can come in handy. To determine the best financial advisors in Charlotte, we only considered firms that manage individual accounts and offer financial planning services. We then ranked these firms based on assets under management (AUM). All data used in our methodology is taken from each firm’s most recent Form ADV filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Our ranking can’t predict which advisor will be right for you, but it can hopefully help you make a more informed decision. Read on for our list of the top firms in Charlotte.

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8 best financial advisors in Charlotte

Firm nameMinimum assets requiredFee structure
Independent Advisor Alliance, LLCVaries by account type
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Hourly charges
  • Fixed fees
Bragg Financial Advisors, Inc.Varies by account type
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Hourly charges
  • Fixed fees
Colony Family Offices, LLC$10 million
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Fixed fees
New Republic Capital, LLC$10 million for advisory accounts
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Fixed fees
  • Performance-based fees
Carolinas Wealth Consulting, LLC$100,000
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Fixed fees
Novare Capital Management$500,000
  • A percentage of AUM
Linden Thomas Advisory Services, LLC$400,000
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Hourly charges
  • Fixed fees
MBL Wealth, LLC$5 million
  • A percentage of AUM
  • Fixed fees

1. Independent Advisor Alliance, LLC

  • Minimum assets required: Varies by account type
  • AUM: $7,652,015,425
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 104:1
  • Fee structure: 
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Hourly charges
    • Fixed fees
  • Phone number: 888-430-1555
  • Headquarters address:
    11215 N. Community House Road, Suite 775
    Charlotte, NC 28277

About Independent Advisor Alliance, LLC

To launch our list of the best financial advisors in Charlotte, we’ve got Independent Advisory Alliance. This is a fee-only investment advisory firm founded in 2013 by Robert Russo, the firm’s owner and CEO. The company offers clients — who typically are individuals, trusts, estates or small businesses — asset management, retirement and financial planning services.

Headquartered in Charlotte, the firm has a network of affiliated advisory representatives across 24 states, with over 130 office locations in total.

Independent Advisor Alliance, LLC investing strategy

There is no unified investing strategy for advisors under the Independent Advisor Alliance hub. The advisory firm recommends that clients ask their advisor to find out more about their investment management style, as it will vary between advisors.

Generally speaking, however, an investment advisor will construct your account using a diversified asset allocation mix, which may include mutual funds (such as index funds, international funds, emerging market funds, real estate funds, high yield bond funds), exchange-traded funds (ETFs), variable annuity subaccounts, alternative investments, hedge funds, real estate investment trusts (REITs) and individual stocks and bonds. Your portfolio will be informed by your time horizon, risk tolerance and financial goals and objectives, as well as your financial circumstances.

The typical investment objectives that Independent Advisor Alliance focuses on are:

  • Income with capital preservation
  • Income with moderate growth
  • Growth with income
  • Growth
  • Aggressive growth

The firm will make its asset allocation decisions based on one of these guiding objectives, as well as the client’s preferences and situation.

Independent Advisor Alliance, LLC disciplinary disclosures

This financial advisory firm does not have any disclosures to report. Firms registered with the SEC are required to detail disciplinary, criminal and regulatory actions taken against the company in client-facing filings and brochures. For more information, visit Independent Advisor Alliance’s Investment Adviser Public Disclosure (IAPD) page.

2. Bragg Financial Advisors, Inc.

  • Minimum assets required: Varies by account type
  • AUM: $2,272,123,381
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 106:1
  • Fee structure: 
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Hourly charges
    • Fixed fees
  • Phone number: 704-377-0261
  • Headquarters address:
    1031 S. Caldwell Street, Suite 200
    Charlotte, NC 28203

About Bragg Financial Advisors, Inc.

Next on our list of the best financial advisors in Charlotte is Bragg Financial Advisors, Inc.. The firm registered with the SEC in 2000, though the firm was started much earlier than that (in 1964) by J. Frank Bragg, Jr., and later grew to include financial planning and corporate benefit plans in the 1970s and 1980s. Bragg now serves as the firm’s chairman emeritus, and his three sons and son-in-law serve in leadership positions, including CEO and vice president.

Today, Bragg Financial Advisors offers advisory services including wealth advisory, family office services and portfolio management. The firm’s clients are individuals both with and without a high net worth (defined by the SEC as at least $750,000 in management or a net worth of at least $1.5 million), investment companies (including mutual funds), pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable organizations and institutions.

Bragg Financial Advisors is owned by the Bragg family, as well as the firm’s chief operations officer Steven Scruggs and Katherine Scruggs (née Bragg). The firm’s only office is located in Charlotte.

Bragg Financial Advisors, Inc. investing strategy

Advisors at Bragg Financial Advisors believe in Modern Portfolio Theory — a philosophy that emphasizes portfolio asset diversification — and following a disciplined investment approach grounded in academic research. The firm claims to remove emotion from the investment decision process and embraces an investing philosophy that places an emphasis on diversification, long-term holding periods, fundamental analysis and risk-adjusted returns.

Client portfolios generally include individual securities, indexed and actively managed mutual funds and ETFs, though the exact makeup will depend on the client’s financial objectives and other factors.

Bragg Financial Advisors, Inc. disciplinary disclosures

Bragg Financial Advisors does not have any reportable disciplinary events to disclose. If a firm has incurred an infraction — defined by the SEC as any regulatory, disciplinary, or civil judicial event involving either the firm or an affiliate — it is required to disclose details in business materials, including client-facing brochures.

For further information on Bragg Financial Advisors, you can visit its IAPD page.

3. Colony Family Offices, LLC

  • Minimum assets required: $10 million
  • AUM: $1,982,934,772
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 45:1
  • Fee structure: 
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Fixed fees
  • Phone number: 704-285-7300
  • Headquarters address:
    4250 Congress Street, Suite 175
    Charlotte, NC 28209

About Colony Family Offices, LLC

Colony Family Offices, LLC is an independent financial advisory company that was established in 2013. Eric Ridenour serves as the firm’s managing director and holds majority ownership of the firm.

Colony Family Offices’ business is focused on serving wealthy families, and the firm currently provides services solely to high net worth individuals (defined by the SEC as those with at least $750,000 in assets under management or $1.5 million in net worth) and charitable trusts. Families generally are required to make a minimum collective investment of at least $10 million.

Colony Family Offices specializes in wealth management areas that include financial planning, investment advisory services, tax planning, education planning, philanthropic planning, operations and risk management. The firm is headquartered in Charlotte and has additional offices in Chapel Hill, N.C., and Nashville, Tenn.

Colony Family Offices, LLC investing strategy

Colony Family Offices builds custom portfolios for its clients, noting that it is focused on real wealth and purchasing power. The types of investments used in client portfolios can include separately managed accounts, ETFs, mutual funds and private funds. In addition to diversifying across multiple factors, the firm uses passive, index-like strategies (which aim to achieve low-cost and tax-efficient exposure) in tandem with active management and alternative strategies.

The firm’s strategies include long-term and short-term purchases, margin transactions (buying more stock than you’d normally be able to by borrowing money from a broker) and option writing (an investment contract for the right to buy or sell shares at a future price and date).

Clients should be aware that Colony Family Offices pays another registered investment advisor, Greycourt & Co., Inc., to assist in research, manager due diligence and asset allocation analysis, though this is not an uncommon practice for investment advisors.

Colony Family Offices, LLC disciplinary disclosures

Colony Family Offices does not have any disclosures to report. The SEC requires registered investment advisory firms to detail any regulatory, criminal or civil judicial events from the last 10 years involving either the firm or its employees or affiliates in the Form ADV paperwork that registered firms must file with the SEC.

For further information on the firm, visit its IAPD page.

4. New Republic Capital, LLC

  • Minimum assets required: $10 million for advisory accounts
  • AUM: $1,573,041,013
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 4:1
  • Fee structure:
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Fixed fees
    • Performance-based fees
  • Phone number: 704-626-1526
  • Headquarters address:
    521 East Morehead Street, Suite 100
    Charlotte, NC 28202

About New Republic Capital, LLC

Established in 2020, New Republic Capital, LLC is a private investment management firm that serves a small number of clients. It currently works with individuals, pooled investment vehicles, charitable organizations, businesses and family offices, though it notes it may expand the types of clients it serves in the future. Its goal is for clients to have an aggregate of $10 million for advisory accounts, though it currently has clients who both are and are not considered high net worth per the SEC’s definition.

Services offered by New Republic Capital include advisory accounts and management, as well as cash management, estate planning, financial planning and philanthropy and charitable giving. The firm, which has just one office location in Charlotte, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the holding company NRP LLC.

New Republic Capital, LLC investing strategy

New Republic Capital tailors its investment services based on each client’s guidelines, objectives, risk tolerance, financial circumstances and restrictions. To meet clients’ objectives, the firm primarily allocates assets among underlying funds, underlying accounts and co-investments, though it may also invest in securities, financial instruments, private investments and other assets.

Further, in order to meet both client goals and achieve long-term returns, New Republic Capital holds that portfolios must be globally diversified, contain exposures to private markets complementing public market investments and include sources of return that are less correlated with traditional asset classes. It uses both passive and active management, preferring active management for asset classes that tend to have higher levels of inefficiency. It also places an emphasis on selecting quality fund managers.

New Republic Capital, LLC disciplinary disclosures

New Republic Capital has a clean disciplinary record. This means that neither the firm nor its employees or advisory affiliates have encountered any issues within the last 10 years that would be relevant to a potential client reviewing the firm and the integrity of its management.

For further information on New Republic Capital, visit its IAPD page.

5. Carolinas Wealth Consulting, LLC

  • Minimum assets required: $100,000
  • AUM: $1,491,765,369
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 30:1
  • Fee structure:
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Fixed fees
  • Phone number: 704-643-2455
  • Headquarters address:
    5605 Carnegie Boulevard, Suite 400
    Charlotte, NC 28209

About Carolinas Wealth Consulting, LLC

Carolinas Wealth Consulting was established in 2018 by George Edmiston, Jr., the firm’s CEO and majority owner. Previously, Edmiston founded an affiliated company, Carolinas Investment Consulting, LLC, in 2001; Carolinas Wealth Consulting is affiliated under common ownership and control with Carolinas Investment Consulting and the firm’s website uses the latter’s name for business.

Carolinas Wealth Consulting provides individuals with investment advisory services. New clients must have at least $100,000 to invest to engage the firm’s services. In addition to individuals who both are and aren’t considered high net worth per the SEC’s definition, Carolinas Wealth Consulting provides services to pension and profit-sharing plans, charitable institutions, foundations, endowments, estates, trusts, corporations and business entities.

The firm operates out of one office, located in Charlotte.

Carolinas Wealth Consulting, LLC investing strategy

Advisors at Carolinas Wealth Consulting believe in the following investing tenets, which guides its approach to portfolio management:

  • Long-term investing: The firm sets a long-term asset allocation for each client that guides decisions.
  • Risk management: The firm defines risk as the permanent loss of capital, and thus focuses on minimizing downside risk.
  • Endowment approach: The firm believes in a total return approach for investing, and believes that families benefit from creating a spending policy and receiving gains from both income and capital appreciation.
  • Objective advice: The firm emphasizes that it does not sell proprietary products or have affiliations that could sway its objectivity in making decisions for client portfolios.

Clients of Carolinas Wealth Consulting have a variety of options for account management. The firm offers wrap fee programs (which bundle all costs into a single, comprehensive fee) that are either sponsored and managed by Fidelity or administered through Fidelity or Schwab but managed by Carolinas Wealth Consulting. Non-wrap managed account programs that are administered through Schwab Advisor Services are also available.

As a client of Carolinas Wealth Consulting, your advisor will discuss your financial goals, as well as your demographic and financial information, to assess your risk profile. Your investment objectives will also help inform the plan for your assets; portfolios generally include long- or short-term trading of stock portfolios, including ETFs, mutual funds, fixed income securities and options.

Carolinas Wealth Consulting LLC disciplinary disclosures

Financial advisory firms registered with the SEC are required to report any regulatory, criminal and civil judicial incidents from within the last decade that involve either the firm or its employees or affiliates in their Form ADV paperwork filed with the SEC. Carolinas Wealth Consulting has no such disclosures to report, meaning it has a clean disciplinary record.

For more information, visit the firm’s IAPD page.

6. Novare Capital Management

  • Minimum assets required: $500,000
  • AUM: $1,409,818,296
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 43:1
  • Fee structure:
    • A percentage of AUM
  • Phone number: 704-334-3698
  • Headquarters address:
    521 East Morehead Street, Suite 510
    Charlotte, NC 28202

About Novare Capital Management

Founded in 1999, Novare Capital Management became a registered investment advisor in 2003. The company is primarily owned by two of its managing directors, William Baynard, Jr. and Don Omstead, as well as an LLC, The Baymen Group.

The firm’s clients include individual investors who both are and aren’t considered high net worth individuals, as well as trusts, estates, charitable organizations, businesses, financial institutions and retirement plans. Novare Capital Management, which generally requires a minimum account size of $500,000, offers comprehensive wealth management, which includes investment advisory and financial planning services, as well as retirement plan advisory services. It also offers an automated investment program through Schwab.

Novare Capital Management is headquartered in Charlotte and has no other offices.

Novare Capital Management investing strategy

New clients of Novare Capital Management start with a discovery meeting in which advisors work to understand their financial goals, risk tolerance, tax situation, cash needs and other financial information. The information gathered will help direct how their portfolio is constructed. The firm primarily invests clients’ assets in individual stocks and bonds, ETFs, mutual funds, master limited partnerships and preferred stocks and options.

Novare Capital Management uses several strategies for portfolio construction, including core equity, energy infrastructure, ETF and fixed income. It also uses the America’s Finest Companies® strategy, which focuses on investing in equity securities of companies from the proprietary list of America’s Finest Companies® with an emphasis on World-Class Dividend Growers® — simply put, the strategy seeks returns by investing in quality companies that have proven performance.

Novare Capital Management disciplinary disclosures

Novare Capital Management has no disciplinary events to report involving the company or its employees or affiliates. For reference, the SEC requires all registered investment advisors to disclose any incidents in their Form ADV paperwork that may be material to potential or current clients in evaluating the firm.

You can learn more about Novare Capital Management by visiting its IAPD page.

7. Linden Thomas Advisory Services, LLC

  • Minimum assets required: $400,000
  • AUM: $991,832,284
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 127:1
  • Fee structure:
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Hourly charges
    • Fixed fees
  • Phone number: 704-554-8150
  • Headquarters address:
    516 North Tryon Street, Suite 200
    Charlotte, NC 28202

About Linden Thomas Advisory Services, LLC

To close-out our list of the best financial advisors in Charlotte, we’ve got Linden Thomas Advisory Services, LLC. The firm was founded in 2018 by Stephen Thomas, who is the firm’s managing principal and owner. The Charlotte-based firm provides investment advisory services, financial planning and retirement plan services to individuals, businesses, trusts and retirement plans.

The firm prefers to work with those who have accounts of $400,000 or higher. However, though most of its clients are considered high net worth individuals per the SEC’s definition, it does also work with a number of individuals who do not meet that definition.

Linden Thomas Advisory Services, LLC investing strategy

Like many firms, Linden Thomas Advisory Services follows the principles of Modern Portfolio Theory, which advocates building globally diversified portfolios. In order to implement this investment approach, the firm evaluates investment opportunities using fundamental analysis as well as by analyzing market trends and economic cycles.

The firm may recommend various investment vehicles and third-party managers. Additionally, Linden Thomas Advisory Services may use short- and long-term purchases, trading, margin and options.

Linden Thomas Advisory Services, LLC disciplinary disclosures

Firms registered with the SEC are required to disclose any civil, regulatory or disciplinary events from within the last decade involving the firm, its employees or its affiliates that would be material to a client’s evaluation of the firm. Linden Thomas Advisory Services has no such incidents to report.

For more information on the firm, you can visit its IAPD page.

8. MBL Wealth, LLC

  • Minimum assets required: $5 million
  • AUM: $722,167,671
  • Individual investor to advisor ratio: 16:1
  • Fee structure:
    • A percentage of AUM
    • Fixed fees
  • Phone number: 704-333-8461
  • Headquarters address:
    1017 E. Morehead Street, Ste. 100
    Charlotte, NC 28204

About MBL Wealth, LLC

MBL Wealth, LLC is a Charlotte-based firm that offers investment advisory services to individuals — primarily those who are high net worth given its $5 million minimum — as well as trusts, estates, charitable organizations, businesses and retirement plans. In addition to investment management services, the firm can provide financial concierge services, such as assistance with bill payment, retirement plan reviews and the payment of tax filings. It also offers a range of financial planning and consulting services, and can conduct retirement plan rollovers.

The firm began working with clients in 2020, and also conducts business under the name MBL Advisory. It is owned by The Lockwood Organization, LLC, which is owned by the firm’s managing principal Luther Lockwood, as well as the firm’s managing directors, Jonathan Dry, Brian Gift and Billy Morton. MBL Wealth’s sole office location is in Charlotte.

MBL Wealth, LLC investing strategy

MBL Wealth takes a top-down approach to wealth management, beginning by learning about a client’s goals and helping them to identify the purpose of the assets on their balance sheet. The firm will only enter into a relationship with clients whose objectives are compatible with the firm’s philosophy and strategies.

MBL Wealth is a strong proponent of Modern Portfolio Theory, which calls for maximizing returns for a given level of risk (or vice versa), and it strives to construct portfolios that are broadly diversified by asset class. Portfolios created by the firm may include stocks, bonds and uncorrelated assets.

MBL Wealth, LLC disciplinary disclosures

MBL Wealth reports no disciplinary disclosures from within the last 10 years. As an SEC-registered investment advisor, the firm is required to report any civil, criminal or regulatory events involving either the firm or its employees or advisory affiliates.

For further information on MBL Wealth, visit its IAPD page.

Frequently asked questions

Charlotte does not levy an additional income tax beyond the state rate, and North Carolina does not have estate or inheritance taxes. Estates and trusts are taxed at the rate levied for individual income tax, which is 5.25% as of the 2021 tax year. Residents of the state may also be subject to federal estate and gift taxes.

You won’t find the same exact services offered by every financial advisor firm. Some financial advisory firms do specialize in retirement planning, which you can discover through their client materials, such as their brochures and website. Other financial advisory firms may specialize in financial planning services, such as charitable giving, family office management or other services, or focus primarily on investing. It is important to find an advisor who offers the services you need and is experienced in providing them.

Yes, it is important to work with a fiduciary financial advisor. Fiduciaries must work in their clients’ best interest at all times — in fact, they are legally and ethically bound to do so. Not all financial advisors are fiduciaries, so it is important to ask a financial advisor first whether they abide by fiduciary duty.

A fee-only financial advisor earns compensation solely through the fees their clients pay, which generally are based on a percentage of assets under management. A fee-based financial advisor, on the other hand, can receive compensation from fees paid by their clients as well as from other sources, such as commissions for selling products to clients or making referrals.

Working with a fee-based financial advisor might come with a greater risk of potential conflicts of interest, as the advisor may be incentivized to recommend certain products to you to increase their own earnings.

Methodology and criteria

In our search for the best financial advisors in Charlotte, we looked at firms throughout the city. All the firms considered are bound by fiduciary duty, registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and offer individual account management and financial planning services. Information for our methodology criteria is taken directly from each firm’s most recent Form ADV filing and brochure, found in the IAPD database.

To localize our results for this list of the best financial advisors in Charlotte, we exclusively looked at firms that met the above criteria and had their headquarters in Georgia, per the address provided in the Form ADV. We only considered those firms that offer financial planning services and portfolio management to individual investors. To be considered for this list, firms also could have no more than one disciplinary disclosure in the past 10 years. From there, the remaining firms that met all of the above stipulations were ranked in order of highest to lowest AUM, as this is an indication of a firm’s size and how many assets it has been entrusted to manage.

Our reviews have also listed several other key features that will help you determine which financial advisor may be most fitting for your investing style and financial needs. While our ranking system and methodology can help you compare firms, it does not indicate which firm may be best for you. All information here is accurate as of March 8, 2022, but don’t hesitate to check out any firm’s Form ADV for yourself on the SEC’s Investment Advisor Public Disclosure site.

The “Find a Financial Advisor” links contained in this article will direct you to webpages devoted to MagnifyMoney Advisor (“MMA”). After completing a brief questionnaire, you will be matched with certain financial advisers who participate in MMA’s referral program, which may or may not include the investment advisers discussed.