Tucked into the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Huntsville is Alabama’s third-largest city and one of the state’s and region’s most important economic centers. One of the reasons it is such a vibrant community is because there is an extensive financial services industry, and it’s set up to help you plan for your future and achieve your goals.
However, because there is such a large market, knowing which one is for you can be a challenge. So, we put our knowledge of the market and the city to work to find the five best financial advisors in Huntsville. Below are our choices along with a short description of each,
Edelman Financial Engine
Although not a Huntsville-specific firm, Edelman Financial Engine is an excellent choice among Huntsville-based financial advisors. They have offices all over the country, and their extensive network of advisors means that working with Edelman Financial Engine will provide you access to the resources of a large firm with the personal service of something smaller. In total, Edelman Financial Engine manages over $200 billion in assets, but you wouldn’t know it when you walk into the office.
Part of why we like Edelman Financial Engine so much is their commitment to educating their clients. As a large firm, they are able to invest considerably in the development of material that you can use to learn more about how to plan your financial future and also understand the market. This will make you a more informed consumer moving forward, which will allow you to make even smarter decisions that will take you even closer to your goals.
These educational materials focus on topics ranging from financial planning and investment management to mortgages, real estate, and insurance. In terms of financial services, Edelman Financial Engine offers:
- Retirement and estate planning
- Financial planning and investment management
- Real estate investment advice
Keel Point LLC
For Huntsville area residents looking for a large, well-established financial services firm that doesn’t have a national presence, Keel Point LLC is going to be a great choice. With over $2 billion in assets and a team of more than 30 advisors, Keel Point LLC has all the resources you need to leverage your money and grow your portfolio. They are based in Huntsville but have offices in Chattanooga, Tenn., Washington, D.C., Greenville, N.C., and Leawood, Kan.
At Keel Point, the goal is to try and make use of this large team and footprint to help you achieve your financial goals. The first meeting you take with the firm is designed to help your advisor understand your goals and figure out the best way to reach them. But you won’t get an answer right away. They will take your information and consult their in-house experts to develop the best plan, a formula that has helped them have the success they have had up until today.
However, we should point out that Keel Point LLC is focused mostly on affluent individuals with high-performing portfolios. The current account minimum is $250,000, but the firm’s specialty is in portfolios with more than $30 million. Furthermore, we should point out that while most of Keel Point’s services are “fee-only,” they do offer some sponsored products for which they receive a commission. But they still have fiduciary duties, meaning they are legally bound to provide impartial financial advice.
The firm provides support to individuals, families, and institutions in the following areas:
- Life planning
- Wealth planning
- Investment management
- Charitable donations
- Family management
- Risk management
- Education planning
- Estate planning
Longview Financial Advisors
It’s always important to remember that financial advisors are not just for the wealthy. Everyone needs someone to help them establish and reach their financial goals, and Longview Financial Advisors is a great partner to have if you live in Huntsville.
Currently, the team consists of seven financial advisors, five of whom are Certified Financial Planners. Other certifications held by members of the team include: Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), Enrolled Agents (EA), Certified Investment Management Analysts (CIMA), Chartered Advisors in Philanthropy (CAP), Certified Private Wealth Advisors (CPW), and Chartered Life Underwriters (CLU).
The firm is entirely employee-owned, which allows it to maintain a high level of autonomy, and it specializes in charitable giving and philanthropy. Furthermore, as a firm, Longview Financial Advisors has shown a commitment to giving back to the Huntsville community, something we always like to see. Services provided include:
- Capstone service: Extensive financial planning for those investing more than $750,000
- Cornerstone service: Similar to Capstone but for those looking to build wealth
- Planning-only: a one-time planning session to help clients devise a plan without creating an extensive investment strategy.
GL Smith and Associates
As a firm that specializes in individuals and not institutions or wealthy families, GL Smith and Associates is a great option for those just beginning their financial journey and who need some help getting started. Each investment plan is designed with the client’s specific goals in mind, and it is updated frequently according to the changes that naturally occur over the course of a lifetime.
GL Smith and Associates is a small firm of just eight people, three of whom are CFPs. However, they have been in business since 1980 and manage over $200 million in assets, proving them more than capable of handling your financial future.
What we like about GL Smith and Associates is that they offer several different investment programs based on your needs and willingness to assume risk. Their asset allocation strategy helps to diversify your portfolio and spread out risk, the bond management program is designed for more conservative investors looking to get consistent returns, and their Season Equity Program allows you to take advantage of seasonal price changes that can be quite profitable. General services include:
- Wealth and investment management
- Retirement planning/401(k) management
Life Course Capital Inc.
It’s important to take a holistic approach to financial planning. Investment choices and asset allocation are obviously important, but it’s also necessary to see how these decisions factor into your overall life plan. At Life Course Capital, this is the approach. Advisors will spend time determining your overall goals and objectives, and they will create a financial plan built around these objectives.
Furthermore, while you will be working with one advisor, the whole team will be contributing to your plan, helping you take advantage of the specific experience each advisor brings to the table. This can lead to some unconventional investment strategies which offer you new and exciting ways to invest without exposing you to excessive risk.
At Life Course Financial, you can get help with the following:
- Investment management
- Financial planning
- Tax planning and preparation
- Small business planning
Clearly, there is no shortage of financial advisors in Huntsville. The firms we’ve detailed above are all exceptional choices, although each one caters to a different client base and has a different approach. However, the best way to know which one is for you is to schedule a meeting and discuss your options. But no matter which one you choose; know you’ll be making a smart decision for your financial future.