So, how much is this going to cost? Fees may vary, but they generally follow the schedules below. If you have questions, just ask.
Financial Planning Only
For flat-fee and hourly engagements. Get the advice you need without any need to invest money or transfer assets. Depending on your needs, we’ll set up an hourly arrangement or agree on a flat “menu-style” fee.
QuickStart meeting: $550 for 80 minutes dedicated to whatever you want to discuss. This is a popular option for quick tips, second opinions, and specific questions on a handful of topics. Learn more about this one-time meeting option.
Project-based engagements: Minimum of $500 for one-time financial advice, but typically around $3,900 or higher. This is a popular option for basic retirement planning and investment recommendations. The goal is to get you answers within 30 days after receiving all of your information (sometimes it’s much faster). For most couples wanting tax planning, etc., plan for roughly $4,500 or more.
Hourly rate: Typically $375 per hour, although I usually quote a flat fee based on an estimate of hours. I generally do not do one-hour engagements (plan for a three-hour minimum or a QuickStart).
Investment Management: Flat Fees or Asset Based
Disciplined portfolio management designed to help you pursue long-term goals.
- Tip: Ongoing investment management clients can potentially receive additional personal finance advice (including financial planning and other guidance) without paying for additional financial planning services.
Individual/household management: Either flat-fee or based on assets under management.
Flat Annual Fees
Flat-fee investment management is billed quarterly and costs depend on a variety of factors. The purpose of this arrangement is generally to reduce the likelihood of conflicts of interest. Also, with larger account sizes and assets under management, a flat-rate advisory agreement could be less expensive for a client with significant assets.
Currently, flat annual fees start at $7,500 for a single person (typically $8,500 for couples) and may be higher for complex situations. This option may be appropriate for those with more than $750,000 in assets.
Assets Under Management (AUM)
Billing is based on combined household assets* and the maximum fee is shown below. The AUM option might work best for those with a few hundred thousand in assets—or who can pay less with this approach than with a flat-fee arrangement.
- $0 – $1,000,000: 1.00%
- $1,000,001 to $5,000,000: 0.85%
- $5,000,001 and above: 0.75%
- Fees are negotiable as asset levels increase or when your assets are exclusively in retirement accounts
Employer-Sponsored Plan Consulting
To help your business or nonprofit with 401(k) plans (or similar), there are several options.
Contact me for more information.
The Details You Really Want
Please note that I can describe Approach Financial’s fees here, but other service providers (like custodians, 401(k) recordkeepers, and third-party administrators) may have additional charges. Any underlying investments may also have fees and expenses, although I typically use relatively low-cost (primarily passive) ETFs and index funds. Don’t worry—that information is all available before you commit to anything. For complete details, it’s critical that you read the following:
- My firm’s ADV
- Disclosures from any service providers you may contract with
- A prospectus or other disclosures from any potential investment
Payment methods: You can write a check, pay electronically from your checking account, or use a credit or debit card to pay for financial planning. For investment management services, the funds typically come out of your investment account—and you receive a notification every time that happens.
* If you choose investment management: The annual fees are negotiable and are pro-rated and paid in arrears on a quarterly basis. The asset-based advisory fee (but not the flat fee) is a blended fee and is calculated by assessing the percentage rates using the predefined levels of assets as shown above and applying the fee to the account value as of the last business day of the quarter resulting in a combined weighted fee.
- Flat-rate investment management example: A client who pays a flat $6,000 per year would pay quarterly. The quarterly fee is calculated by the following calculation: Flat Fee ÷ 4 = Annual Fee. For example, a $6,000 annual fee would result in a quarterly charge of $1,500. Fees are typically deducted directly from client accounts.
- Percentage example: An account valued at $2,000,000 would pay an effective fee of 0.925% with the annual fee of $18,500. The quarterly fee is determined by the following calculation: (($1,000,000 x 1.00%) + ($1,000,000 x 0.85%)) ÷ 4 = $4,625.
No increase in the annual fee shall be effective without agreement from the client by signing a new agreement or amendment to their current advisory agreement. Please review your account statements and invoices to stay informed on how much you’re paying. Compare reports that you receive from your custodian to any invoices, and verify that you receive quarterly statements from your custodian.
Our financial planning hourly fee (or flat fees) may be higher than normally charged in the industry, and similar services may be offered by another adviser at a lower fee.