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Alternatives to Northwestern Mutual

Explore comparable wealth management services with these four platform alternatives

Northwestern Mutual offers one-on-one access to financial advisers that can help streamline and automate your investment journey. But the service isn’t for everyone — its fee structure is unclear and you need a portfolio of at least $25,000 to get started. Compare your investment service options with these four Northwestern Mutual alternatives.

Northwestern Mutual alternatives

Personal Capital

Personal Capital

4.1 / 5 ★★★★★

This investment platform offers up a unique combination of savings accounts, financial tools and wealth management services, but high portfolio minimums make it prohibitive. To be fair, Personal Capital won't be the right fit for everyone. You need a sizable portfolio of at least $100,000 to qualify for its wealth management services. And while its fee structure is clear, it's not exactly the most competitive on the market — lower rates can be found with robo-advisors like Betterment and SoFi.
Account typesRobo-Advisor
Annual fee0.89% on balances up to $1,000,000
Option trade fee$0
Available asset typesStocks, ETFs

Facet Wealth

Facet Wealth Financial Planning

Gain access to one-on-one investment support with a financial adviser for a flat annual fee based on your investment needs. Facet Wealth specializes in advisory services — it doesn't actually offer investment accounts. Instead, it helps investors with their existing portfolios as long as they're willing to pay the cost of the service: $480 per year for access to a dedicated financial adviser and $800 per year for investment management services.
Account typesBrokerage, Retirement
Annual fee$480 per year
Option trade fee$0
Available asset typesStocks

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade

4.4 / 5 ★★★★★

As one of the largest and best-equipped brokerages in the US, TD Ameritrade has plenty to offer both passive and active investors alike. TD Ameritrade has a little something for everyone: a robo-advisor for portfolios of $500 or more and wealth management services for portfolios of at least $25,000. Its management fees scale based on the size of your portfolio, with its most competitive rates reserved for investors with portfolios over $250,000.
Account typesBrokerage, Retirement, Education, Custodial, Specialty
Annual fee0%
Option trade fee$0 + $0.65/contract,
or $25 broker-assisted
Available asset typesStocks, Bonds, Options, Mutual funds, ETFs, Currencies, CDs, Futures, Forex

Betterment

Betterment

4.4 / 5 ★★★★★

This well-rounded robo-advisor offers competitive rates and no account minimums, so even those new to the game are welcome to sign up. Betterment is one of the better-equipped robo-advisors on the market. It offers a solid lineup of account options, tax-loss harvesting, automatic rebalancing and fractional shares.
Account typesRetirement, Robo-Advisor
Annual fee0.25% on balances up to $99,999
0.4% on balances of $100,000+
Available asset typesStocks, Bonds

Pros and cons of Northwestern Mutual

Northwestern Mutual’s financial planning has its perks, but there are several significant drawbacks to consider.

Pros

  • Dedicated human advisers. This platform’s wealth management service connects investors with one-on-one support from dedicated financial advisers.
  • Account variety. Northwestern Mutual’s advisers can help you manage a variety of investment accounts, including IRAs, 401(k)s and 529 plans.

Cons

  • Lack of transparency. Northwestern Mutual states that its fees are negotiated on a client-by-client basis — so you won’t know how much you’ll pay for its services until you’re well into the application process.
  • High minimum. To open an investment advisory account through Northwestern Mutual, you’ll need a portfolio of at least $25,000.

How to transfer your brokerage account

Ready to switch it up? The account transfer process will depend on which platform you plan to move to. For information specific to the Northwestern Mutual account transfer process, reach out to a rep during business hours and ask about applicable fees and next steps.
Here’s a look at the typical process:

  1. Contact your new broker to inform them of the transfer and provide them with your Northwestern Mutual account number.
  2. Complete any required transfer paperwork from your new broker. For accounts under $250,000, you may be asked to notarize your signature. For accounts over $250,000, you may be asked for a medallion signature guarantee.
  3. Submit your transfer paperwork to your existing broker.

The account transfer process typically takes between seven and 10 business days.

Compare financial advisory accounts

1 - 3 of 3
Name Product Annual fee Available asset types
Vanguard Personal Advisor
0.03%
Stocks,Mutual funds,ETFs
Financial advice powered by relationships, not commissions.
Facet Wealth Financial Planning
$480 per year
Stocks
Facet Wealth flat fee model allows them to deliver an affordable Facet Financial Life Plan and create greater access for families that are just starting—or with assets in retirement plans
Personal Capital
0.89% on balances up to $1,000,000
Stocks,ETFs
Offers financial analysis and tracking, plus wealth management services. User-friendly interface with a retirement planner component.
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