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Best Financial Advisors in Kansas City

Aug. 15, 2019, 8:17 p.m.

Getting financial advice is intimidating, but a good financial advisor works in your best interest to help you meet your goals. Our partners at ConsumerAffairs researched the best financial advisors in Kansas City to get you a trusted financial planner.

Everyone deserves to make thoughtful, informed purchase decisions. The local guides provided on this website are free for consumers. KSHB may receive compensation from our partners. Learn more.

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#1
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#2
Buttonwood Financial Group
Buttonwood Financial Group
Features
  • Over $435 billion total assets under management
  • No minimum initial investment
  • Engages in wrap-fee programs
  • Standard annual asset-based fee as low as 0.65%
Location
3013 Main St.
Kansas City, KS 64108
(816) 285-9000
#3
Frontier Wealth Management
Frontier Wealth Management
Features
  • $2.2 billion total assets under management
  • $250,000 minimum investment
  • Uses a transparent fee-only model
  • Prioritizes asset allocation & full diversification of portfolios
Location
4435 Main St., Ste. 650
Kansas City, KS & MO 64111
(816) 753-5100
Searcy Financial Services
Searcy Financial Services
Features
  • Manages over $230 billion total assets in 983 accounts
  • Independent Registered Investment Advisor
  • Fee-only pricing either hourly or percentage-based
  • Expertise in personal wealth planning & group retirement plans
Location
12980 Foster St., Ste. 160
Overland Park, KS 66213
(913) 814-3800
The Planned Approach
The Planned Approach
Features
  • M-F: 9am - 5pm
  • Closed Sat and Sun
  • theplannedapproach.com
Location
420 W. 98th St.
Kansas City, MO 64114
(816) 941-0098
Mader & Shannon Wealth Management
Mader & Shannon Wealth Management
Features
  • M-F: 8am - 5pm
  • Closed Sat and Sun
  • madershannon.com
Location
4717 Grand Ave., Ste. 800
Kansas City, MO 64112
(816) 751-0585
Open Road Wealth Management
Open Road Wealth Management
Features
  • M-F: 8am - 5pm
  • Closed Sat and Sun
  • openroadwealth.com
Location
9100 N. Lewis Ave.
Kansas City, MO 66214
(816) 507-5237
Baird Private Wealth Management
Baird Private Wealth Management
Features
  • M-F: 9am - 5pm
  • Closed Sat and Sun
  • bairdoffices.com
Location
444 W. 47th St., Ste. 100
Kansas City, MO 64112
(816) 480-4200
Sterneck Capital Management
Sterneck Capital Management
Features
  • M-F: 8am - 5pm
  • Closed Sat and Sun
  • sterneckcapital.com
Location
4510 Belleview Ave., Ste. 204
Kansas City, MO 64111
(816) 531-2254
CommunityAmerica Credit Union
CommunityAmerica Credit Union
Features
  • M-F: 8am - 5pm
  • Sat: 9am - 12pm
  • Closed Sun
  • communityamerica.com/financial-advisors
Location
1811 Walnut St.
Kansas City, MO 64108
(913) 905-7000
Waddell & Reed Financial Advisors
Waddell & Reed Financial Advisors
Features
  • M-F: 9am - 5pm
  • Closed Sat and Sun
  • missouri.wradvisors.com
Location
900 W. 48th Pl., Ste. 120
Kansas City, MO 64112
(816) 548-4155

Choosing a financial advisor in Kansas City

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Hiring someone to keep track of your finances and plan your financial future may seem superfluous to some in Kansas City, but experts have found that asset management services are almost always beneficial. Hiring a financial planner or retirement advisor provides:

  • Greater return on investments — typically between 1.5 to 4 percent
  • Help planning for both short- and long-term goals
  • Personalized support on investment strategy, asset allocation and tax minimization

Many people seek financial advice after a big life change, and financial advisors help them create a straightforward financial plan to navigate any stage of life, whether it’s saving for retirement or paying off student loans. Consider hiring a financial advisor in Kansas City if:

  • You’re nearing retirement
  • You just inherited money
  • You’re recently married or nearing your wedding
  • You’re recently divorced or nearing your divorce
  • You’re unsure how to begin investing
  • You want a second opinion on current investments

Types of financial advisors

There are many types of financial advisors in Kansas City offering asset management, so deciding if you prefer a human advisor or a robo-advisor is one of the first important steps to finding financial help. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages outlined in the table below.

Pros Cons
Robo-advisor
  • Cheaper
  • Easier to access
  • Not as good for comprehensive planning
Human advisor
  • More tailored financial planning and asset management
  • More expensive
  • Only available via appointments

As a rule of thumb, robo-advisors are better for shorter-term, more general financial planning. The more complicated a situation you have (i.e., multiple businesses, accounts or goals), the more you will benefit from a human advisor. Robo-advisors also offer asset management for all levels of wealth, whereas some human advisors require a significantly larger balance to begin, up to $250,000.

In your search, you’ll likely come across the term fiduciary. A fiduciary is a person with the ability and the obligation to act for you in situations that require trust, good faith and honesty. This means that, by law, a fiduciary money advisor has to act in your best interest — whether or not it benefits them.

Some financial advisors in Kansas City are non-fiduciary, meaning they do not abide by this legal and ethical standard. The sustainability standard these advisors use requires them to recommend suitable action to the client, which they may have a stake in as well.

Fiduciary financial advisors give advice based on all of your information, including your family and career aspirations, whereas a non-fiduciary might offer recommendations based on people like you in Kansas City. This does not mean non-fiduciaries are not looking out for their clients; it just means they aren’t required by law to act in the clients’ best interest.

What is the cost of a financial advisor in Kansas City?

There are several ways financial advisors make money from asset management in Kansas City, as seen in the table below.

Price Structure Description Cost
Assets under management fee This fee depends on how much money you have invested; for asset management in Kansas City, they typically take the fee directly from your account. 0.25% - 5% of your account
Commission This is a portion of the money you spend buying high-performing investments, charged per transaction. 3% - 6% of investment
Retainer This is a scheduled fee for on-call financial advisory services. $2,000 - $7,500 per year
Hourly fee This is a charge for the time you use, regardless of your assets. $200 - $400 per hour
Flat fee This is a set price for financial planning and asset management services, regardless of how much money you have. $1,000 - $3,000

It’s critical to understand how your advisor makes money because this impacts how they work to make you money. If it’s only a fee-for-service structure (including hourly, retainer or flat fees), they’re less motivated to make you more money. By contrast, financial advisors who make a commission based on your assets under management or investments are more inclined to help your money grow.

However, conflicts of interest also arise, depending on the price structure. For instance, advisors in Kansas City taking a portion of your investment are more likely to move your money around needlessly or encourage you to keep a higher balance in your account. Flat fees avoid some of these temptations.

What qualifications should a financial advisor have?

It can be hard to find a reputable financial advisor in Kansas City, but the easiest way to check an advisor’s qualifications is to use the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Form ADV. This is the standard form that investment advisors (sometimes spelled adviser) use to register with the government.

Using this site, you can search for both a firm’s or an individual’s history and registrations to make sure they are licensed and legitimate. Not all advisors have to register though; the government only regulates advisors who provide investment guidance.

Reputable financial advisors also have some other form of professional certification, usually as a Certified Financial Planner. Other things to look for in a financial advisor include positive customer reviews, experience and availability.

Once you find some advisors you’re interested in working with, ask them:

  • What’s your investment philosophy?
  • Are you a fiduciary?
  • How much will I have to pay?
  • What are your qualifications?
  • What’s your experience with cases like mine?
  • How do you get paid?
  • How will our relationship work?
  • What’s your availability?

Using these answers, compare your options and come to an educated decision for your financial future in Kansas City.

Facet Wealth

Facet Wealth VISIT FACET WEALTH

Facet Wealth is a financial advisor firm that wants to evolve the traditional method of financial planning by combining robo-advisors and human help. Facet customers work with a CFP to create a personalized plan, which the customer then manages online. Facet Wealth is not currently registered to offer investment advice in Kansas or Missouri, so inquire with the company to make sure they meet the legal requirements to help you.

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