Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services is an investment advisory firm headquartered in Plymouth, Minnesota. The firm has additional locations throughout the country. Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services offers investment management, along with financial planning, tax advice, retirement plan consulting and other services. The firm promotes a team-based experience, where specialists in different financial areas work together to advise clients.
The bottom line: Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services is a wealth management and financial planning firm with relatively low account minimums that offers a high level of personalized attention.
|Assets under management: $24,264,055,260|
|Minimum investment: Varies by program|
|Individual investor to advisor ratio: 59:1|
|Fee structure: A percentage of AUM, hourly charges, fixed fees, other (fees received from third-party investment advisors)|
|Headquarters: 505 North Highway 169, Suite 900 Plymouth, MN 55441
All information included in this profile is accurate as of August 25, 2021. For more information, please consult Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services’ website.
We will use this information to find the right advisor near you
Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services has operated as an investment advisory firm since 2001. The firm is wholly owned by The Wealth Enhancement Group, LLC, which opened in 1997 in Minnesota.
The firm has approximately 400 employees, nearly all of whom perform investment advisory services. Advisors at the firm hold a wide range of professional credentials including the certified financial planner (CFP), chartered financial analyst (CFA) and certified public accountant (CPA) designations, as well as JD and MBA degrees.
Most of the firm’s clients are individual investors without a high net worth. However, the firm works with several thousand high net worth investors as well, and the majority of the firm’s managed assets are from those clients. For reference, high net worth investors are defined by the SEC as having at least $750,000 with the advisor or a total net worth over $1.5 million.
It takes a minimum investment of $25,000 to open an account, so the firm is accessible for emerging investors. In addition, the firm could accept smaller portfolios under special circumstances or if the firm has reason to believe the client will reach the minimum within 12 months.
Besides its standard investment management services, the firm has other programs with higher minimum portfolio requirements. The ones with high minimums offer a wider range of possible investments and strategies.
|Investment Minimums for Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services Programs|
|Program||Minimum required investment|
|Standard Investment Management Services||$25,000|
|WEAS Core Program||$30,000 to $250,000|
|WEAS ACCESS Program||$100,000|
|SEI Program||$25,000 to $1 million, depending on the strategy|
|Schwab Managed Account Select Program||$100,000 for most equity styles
$250,000 for fixed income styles
The firm follows a system called the Roundtable approach, where specialists from different financial fields work together to advise clients. The firm looks at six different areas for each plan: investment management, financial planning, retirement income planning, estate planning, tax strategies and risk management and insurance.
The firm’s financial advisors can design plans with different levels of complexity. They can create comprehensive plans that cover all parts of your financial situation, along with less intensive financial plans, where they give you some recommendations but not for all parts of your financial life. The more complex the plan, the higher the cost. You can also sign up for both ongoing financial planning or for a one-time review of a specific topic.
For investment management, advisors typically uses a discretionary approach, where advisors can make trades on a client’s behalf. However, clients can request to use a nondiscretionary approach, where the client must approve trades themselves.
Here’s a comprehensive list of services offered by Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services:
For each individual investor, Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services’ advisors design customized portfolio recommendations. The advisors will look at your risk tolerance, time horizon, goals, tax status and other objectives to create your portfolio. Investments made by the firm tend to focus on long-term purchases, which are defined as investments made for one year or longer, but the firm is willing to make short-term trades when it makes sense.
The firm’s investment philosophy is based on four broad principles: diversification, cost efficiency, tax efficiency and active management. Through diversification, the firm looks to minimize risk by building portfolios with a mixed asset allocation. The firm also believes that through its size and experience, it can help clients save money on trades and also on their taxes.
Finally, the firm aims to identify investments that earn above-average market returns through active management. While they primarily use passive, broad market investments to keep costs low, advisors still research chances to generate a higher level of return for a given risk level by looking at factors like momentum, valuations and volatility.
As noted earlier, the firm has different programs with different investment minimums. The one you sign up with determines what kinds of investments are available along with what type of advice you receive. The programs include:
The firm also offers programs that use investments from certain third parties, such as Charles Schwab and SEI Investments.
For investment advice, Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services charges clients based on a percentage of assets under management. This asset-based fee covers both the firm’s investment advisory services and administrative work. The advisors do not earn a fee for their performance, but they can earn commissions for selling certain investments.
The firm’s brochure states that its maximum fee is 2%, though its website notes that it typically keeps fees within 1% to 1.50% of assets under management. Clients negotiate their costs when they first sign up, and your rate will depend on your portfolio size and the complexity of your needs. Clients may also be responsible for covering brokerage costs and other investment fees, unless they are in a wrap fee program, which includes these costs already.
Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services also works with multiple third-party advisors and platforms to offer investments. In these cases, the fees can be different and may exceed 2%. However, the firm notes that the maximum it will earn is 2%, with the excess going to the third party.
While the firm’s fee schedule depends on each client’s situation, the firm’s brochure lists these ranges as an example:
|Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services Sample Fee Schedule|
|Total portfolio size||Asset under management fee|
|$999,999 or less||1.50%|
|$1,000,000 to $2,000,000||1.25%|
If a client wants standalone financial planning, they can pay by the hour or by the plan. Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services charges an hourly rate of up to $600 an hour or a flat fee of between $250 to $25,000 for a plan, depending on the complexity.
For retirement plan consulting, Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services charges either up to $600 per hour or an asset-based fee of up to 1%.
This firm doesn’t have any legal or disciplinary events to disclose on its filings, showing that the firm and its advisors have a clean record. The SEC requires RIAs to disclose any major disciplinary incidents from the past 10 years on both their Form ADV filing and their company brochure. These disclosures should include any criminal charges, government fines or sanctions and civil suits.
For more information on the firm, visit the firm’s IAPD page.
If you’d like to learn more about working with the firm, you can:
There is no cost for an initial consultation. During this first meeting, the advisor will collect your financial and investment information, while discussing your goals, risk tolerance and time horizon. They will then share this information with their team of different financial specialists to put together your portfolio recommendation and a fee quote.
The firm contacts its clients at least annually to offer a review of investments, manager performance and any ongoing needs.
The firm has offices in the following states:
If you’re looking for an advisor that covers all parts of your financial plan — not just investments — Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services could be a good choice. Through its team-based approach, you’ll get feedback from experts across all areas. You can get this high level of service even as a smaller investor, as you can open a plan with Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services for just $25,000. Finally, with over 50 locations throughout the U.S., the firm has a large footprint and is accessible for investors in many parts of the country.
On the other hand, this firm might not be a good choice if you’re trying to control costs. The firm can charge fairly high fees, with its maximum asset-based fee ranging up to 2%, and you won’t know what you’re going to pay until you have a detailed conversation with an advisor at the firm. Advisors may also earn commissions for recommending certain products, which could pose a potential conflict of interest that can also get in the way of a cost-effective portfolio.
Be sure to research multiple firms to ensure you find the right advisor for you.
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.