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Best Indianapolis, Indiana Financial Planners

What to Look for in a Financial Planner

When seeking a financial planner in Indianapolis, it’s essential to identify key traits and qualifications that ensure you’re making a sound choice. Firstly, credentials matter greatly. Look for certifications such as Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), or Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA). These designations indicate a high level of expertise and a commitment to professional standards.

Experience is another crucial factor. Planners with a solid track record are more likely to provide reliable advice. For instance, Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors has been operating since 2001 and offers a range of services, including portfolio management and financial planning. Their clean disciplinary record and tailored investment strategies make them a reputable choice.

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Consider the services offered by the planner. Some may specialize in retirement planning, while others focus on wealth management or tax planning. Thurston Springer Advisors, for example, offers a wide range of services from financial planning to portfolio management and multi-generational planning, making them versatile for various needs.

The planner’s fee structure is also vital. Some charge a percentage of assets under management (AUM), while others might charge hourly rates or flat fees. For instance, financial planners typically charge between $200 to $400 per hour, while comprehensive financial plans can range from $1,000 to $10,000. Understanding these fees upfront can help you budget accordingly.

Lastly, reviews and testimonials can provide insight into a planner’s reliability and client satisfaction. Many firms, like Column Capital Advisors, boast no legal or disciplinary events, which speaks to their integrity and professionalism.

Here’s a table summarizing what to look for:

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Criteria Details
Credentials CFP, CFA, CIMA
Experience Established firms with a long track record (e.g., Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors)
Services Offered Retirement planning, wealth management, tax planning (e.g., Thurston Springer Advisors)
Fee Structure Percentage of AUM, hourly rates ($200-$400/hour), flat fees ($1,000-$10,000)
Client Reviews Look for testimonials and a clean disciplinary record (e.g., Column Capital Advisors)

Credentials to Look For

When selecting a financial planner, credentials are a key indicator of their expertise and reliability. The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation is widely recognized and requires rigorous training, examinations, and ongoing education. CFPs must also adhere to a strict code of ethics, ensuring they act in the best interests of their clients.

Chartered Financial Analysts (CFAs) are known for their extensive knowledge in investment management. This credential involves passing three challenging exams and gaining relevant work experience. CFAs are particularly valuable for clients looking for sophisticated investment strategies.

Certified Investment Management Analysts (CIMAs) provide advanced portfolio management services. They focus on investment advice and often work with high-net-worth clients. CIMA certification requires extensive training in portfolio theory, risk management, and asset allocation.

Another important credential is the Accredited Financial Counselor (AFC), which focuses on financial counseling and education. This designation is beneficial for clients needing assistance with debt management and financial literacy.

It’s also worth noting the fiduciary standard. Planners who are fiduciaries are legally obligated to act in your best interest, providing peace of mind that their advice is free from conflicts of interest. Firms like Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors emphasize their fiduciary duty, ensuring recommendations are aligned with client goals without any commission-based incentives.

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Here’s a table of key credentials:

Credential Focus Requirements
CFP (Certified Financial Planner) Comprehensive financial planning, ethical standards Education, exam, experience, ethics code
CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) Investment management Three exams, work experience
CIMA (Certified Investment Management Analyst) Advanced portfolio management Training in portfolio theory, risk management, asset allocation
AFC (Accredited Financial Counselor) Financial counseling, debt management, financial literacy Education, exam, continuing education
Fiduciary Standard Acting in the client’s best interest, avoiding conflicts of interest Legal obligation, typically part of CFP and certain advisory firms
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Top Financial Planners in Indianapolis

Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors, LLC

Address: 8801 River Crossing Blvd., Suite 100, Indianapolis, IN 46240
Phone: 317-705-5700
Website: Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors
Social Media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter

Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors is a prominent firm in Indianapolis, offering a variety of services including portfolio management and financial planning. Established in 2001, the firm designs custom portfolios to meet specific client goals, leveraging strategies such as the “Bulls of the Dow” portfolio and “Covered Call” income portfolio. Their clean disciplinary record and tailored services make them a trusted choice.

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Thurston Springer Advisors

Address: 9000 Keystone Crossing, Seventh Floor, Indianapolis, IN 46240
Phone: 317-581-4000
Website: Thurston Springer Advisors
Social Media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter

Thurston Springer Advisors, successor to Thurston Springer Financial, provides comprehensive financial planning, multi-generational planning, and portfolio management. Their diverse investment strategies and client-focused approach make them suitable for a wide range of investors, including those without high net worth.

Column Capital Advisors, LLC

Address: Indianapolis, IN
Phone: 317-663-5600
Website: Column Capital Advisors
Social Media: LinkedIn

Column Capital Advisors is known for its integrity and professional standards, with no legal or disciplinary events reported. They offer personalized financial planning and investment management services, focusing on the unique needs of each client. Their emphasis on trust and transparency makes them a reliable partner in financial planning.

Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors

Address: 3500 DePauw Blvd., Suite 2071, Indianapolis, IN 46268
Phone: 317-872-5090
Website: Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors
Social Media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram

Worley Erhart-Graves is a woman-owned firm offering sophisticated financial planning and investment management services. Their CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioners are fiduciaries, ensuring client interests are prioritized. They also provide tax services through their affiliate, Smitson Erhart-Graves Tax Advisors, making them a comprehensive financial planning partner.

Elser Financial Planning

Address: 8900 Keystone Crossing, Suite 450, Indianapolis, IN 46240
Phone: 317-731-5615
Website: Elser Financial Planning
Social Media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter

Elser Financial Planning is a fee-only advisory firm that prides itself on personal referrals and client satisfaction. They offer comprehensive financial planning services and are dedicated to helping clients achieve their financial goals through personalized strategies.

Crown Haven Wealth Advisors

Address: Carmel, IN (serving Indianapolis)
Phone: 317-564-4691
Website: Crown Haven Wealth Advisors
Social Media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter

Crown Haven Wealth Advisors assist clients in meeting their retirement and money management goals through their proprietary RetireSHIELD® planning process. They emphasize a thoughtful approach to financial planning, making them a solid choice for those focused on retirement strategies.

Reviews and Testimonials

Client reviews and testimonials offer invaluable insights into the reliability and effectiveness of financial planners. Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors, for example, are praised for their personalized portfolio designs and professional integrity. Clients appreciate their innovative investment strategies, such as the “Bulls of the Dow” portfolio, which tracks top performers in the Dow Jones Index.

Thurston Springer Advisors receives accolades for their comprehensive services and client-centered approach. Reviews highlight their ability to cater to individual needs, offering everything from retirement planning to asset allocation and rebalancing. Their clean disciplinary record adds to their credibility and trustworthiness.

Column Capital Advisors stands out for their transparency and lack of disciplinary issues. Clients value their personalized financial planning services and the firm’s commitment to acting in their best interests. This dedication to client satisfaction is evident inclient reviews. They often highlight how the firm’s tailored advice and transparent practices have helped them achieve their financial goals. The personal touch and commitment to client interests are recurring themes in their feedback.

Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors are particularly noted for their empathetic approach and strong client relationships. Reviews often mention how the firm’s fiduciary duty and comprehensive services, including tax planning, have provided clients with a sense of security and confidence in their financial futures. Their focus on personalized planning and attentive service receives high praise from clients.

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Elser Financial Planning also garners positive feedback for their client-centric approach. Testimonials often emphasize the firm’s dedication to personalized financial strategies and their commitment to client education. Clients appreciate the firm’s transparency and the peace of mind that comes from knowing their financial planner is acting in their best interests without any commission-based incentives.

Crown Haven Wealth Advisors are recognized for their innovative RetireSHIELD® planning process. Clients frequently mention how this proprietary approach has helped them feel more prepared for retirement. The firm’s comprehensive retirement planning services and client-focused strategies receive high marks from those who have worked with them.

Here’s a table summarizing client reviews and ratings:

Firm Client Reviews Ratings
Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors Personalized portfolio designs, professional integrity, innovative investment strategies 4.8/5 on Yelp
Thurston Springer Advisors Comprehensive services, client-centered approach, clean disciplinary record 4.7/5 on Yelp
Column Capital Advisors Transparency, personalized planning, commitment to client interests 4.6/5 on Yelp
Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors Empathetic approach, strong client relationships, fiduciary duty, comprehensive services including tax planning 4.9/5 on Yelp
Elser Financial Planning Client-centric approach, personalized strategies, commitment to client education, transparency 4.7/5 on Yelp
Crown Haven Wealth Advisors Innovative RetireSHIELD® planning process, comprehensive retirement planning, client-focused strategies 4.8/5 on Yelp

How to Choose the Right Financial Planner

Choosing the right financial planner is a significant decision that can have a profound impact on your financial future. Here are some essential steps to help you make an informed choice:

  1. Identify Your Needs: Determine what you need help with. Are you looking for retirement planning, debt management, investment advice, or comprehensive financial planning? Knowing your specific needs will help you find a planner with the right expertise.
  2. Research Credentials: Look for planners with recognized credentials such as CFP, CFA, or CIMA. These designations ensure the planner has undergone rigorous training and adheres to high professional standards.
  3. Check Experience: Experienced planners are more likely to provide reliable advice. Look for firms with a long track record and positive client reviews. For instance, firms like Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors and Thurston Springer Advisors have been serving clients for decades and have a strong reputation.
  4. Understand Fee Structures: Different planners charge different fees. Some might charge a percentage of assets under management, while others charge hourly rates or flat fees. Make sure you understand the fee structure and ensure it aligns with your budget.
  5. Read Reviews and Testimonials: Client reviews can provide valuable insights into a planner’s reliability and effectiveness. Look for planners with positive reviews and high ratings on platforms like Yelp.
  6. Schedule Interviews: Meet with potential planners to discuss your needs and see if you feel comfortable with their approach. Ask about their experience, services, fees, and how they plan to help you achieve your financial goals.

Here’s a table to help you through the selection process:

Step Details
Identify Your Needs Determine specific financial planning needs (retirement, debt management, investment advice, etc.)
Research Credentials Look for CFP, CFA, CIMA credentials
Check Experience Seek planners with a long track record and positive reviews
Understand Fee Structures Learn about different fee structures (AUM, hourly rates, flat fees)
Read Reviews Look for positive client reviews and high ratings on platforms like Yelp
Schedule Interviews Meet with planners to discuss their experience, services, fees, and approach

Services Offered by Top Financial Planners

Financial planners offer a wide range of services designed to help clients achieve their financial goals. Here are some of the key services provided by top financial planners in Indianapolis:

  1. Portfolio Management: Managing investments to meet specific financial goals. Firms like Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors design custom portfolios using various strategies such as the “Bulls of the Dow” and “Covered Call” income portfolios.
  2. Retirement Planning: Helping clients prepare for retirement by assessing their current financial situation, setting retirement goals, and creating a plan to achieve those goals. Crown Haven Wealth Advisors, with their RetireSHIELD® planning process, specialize in this area.
  3. Financial Planning: Creating comprehensive financial plans that include budgeting, saving, investing, and planning for major life events. Elser Financial Planning focuses on providing holistic financial planning services.
  4. Tax Planning: Minimizing tax liabilities and ensuring compliance with tax laws. Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors offer tax services through their affiliate, Smitson Erhart-Graves Tax Advisors, providing clients with integrated financial and tax planning.
  5. Estate Planning: Assisting clients with the management and transfer of assets to heirs. This includes creating wills, trusts, and other estate planning documents.
  6. Debt Management: Helping clients manage and reduce debt. This can include creating debt repayment plans and advising on strategies to avoid future debt.
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Here’s a table summarizing the services offered by top financial planners:

Firm Services Offered
Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors Portfolio management, financial planning, consulting
Thurston Springer Advisors Financial planning, multi-generational planning, portfolio management, retirement planning
Column Capital Advisors Financial planning, investment management, personalized financial strategies
Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors Financial planning, investment management, tax planning, estate planning
Elser Financial Planning Comprehensive financial planning, personalized strategies
Crown Haven Wealth Advisors Retirement planning, wealth management, RetireSHIELD® planning process

Importance of a Fiduciary Financial Planner

Choosing a fiduciary financial planner can provide peace of mind that your planner is legally obligated to act in your best interest. Fiduciaries are held to the highest standards of integrity and transparency, ensuring that their recommendations are solely for your benefit.

Fiduciary planners, like those at Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors, do not receive commissions for selling financial products. This eliminates potential conflicts of interest, as they are not incentivized to recommend products that may not be in your best interest. Instead, they focus on providing advice that aligns with your financial goals.

Working with a fiduciary can also enhance trust and communication. Knowing that your planner is committed to your best interests allows for open and honest discussions about your financial situation and goals. This can lead to more effective and tailored financial planning.

Fiduciaries are also required to disclose any potential conflicts of interest. This transparency ensures that you are fully informed about any factors that could influence your planner’s advice. Firms like Column Capital Advisors emphasize their fiduciary duty and maintain a clean disciplinary record, reinforcing their commitment to client interests.

In summary, a fiduciary financial planner provides:

  • Unbiased Advice: Recommendations are based solely on your best interests.
  • Transparency: Full disclosure of any potential conflicts of interest.
  • Trust: Enhanced trust and communication between you and your planner.
  • Commitment: A legal obligation to act in your best interest.

Here’s a table highlighting the importance of choosing a fiduciary financial planner:

Benefit Details
Unbiased Advice Recommendations based solely on client’s best interests without commission-based incentives
Transparency Full disclosure of potential conflicts of interest
Trust Enhanced trust and communication
Commitment Legal obligation to act in client’s best interest


Finding the best financial planner in Indianapolis involves careful consideration of several factors, including credentials, experience, services offered, fee structures, and client reviews. Top firms like Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors, Thurston Springer Advisors, Column Capital Advisors, Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors, Elser Financial Planning, and Crown Haven Wealth Advisors offer a range of services tailored to meet diverse financial needs.

Credentials such as CFP, CFA, and CIMA indicate a high level of expertise, while a fiduciary duty ensures that planners act in your best interest. Reading client reviews and understanding fee structures can further help you make an informed decision.

Ultimately, choosing the right financial planner can provide you with the guidance and support needed to achieve your financial goals and secure your financial future. Whether you’re planning for retirement, managing debt, or seeking investment advice, the top financial planners in Indianapolis are equipped to help you navigate your financial journey with confidence and peace of mind.

For more information on these firms and to read client reviews, visit their websites and social media pages linked above.

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