The Mission-Driven Advisor: Is the Grass Really Greener for RIAs?

Written by: Jeff Thomas

Is the grass really greener for RIAs?  According to a recent article in Financial Advisor magazine, the answer is a resounding “Yes”, according to brokers. [1]

The article sites a survey by TD Ameritrade Institutional saying that 44% of “potential breakaways” plan to do so in the next 12 months.

Brokers are fed up with their current institutions.  Their top complaint is the regulatory environment and their firm’s inability to adapt. 
Clients are demanding fiduciaries 100% of the time and their conflicted firms can’t provide that platform.  Brokers are increasingly drawn to the RIA channel to solve that problem.

Other top concerns from brokers were firm culture, leadership and compensation.

So, brokers want to move to a 100% fiduciary platform (RIA) with a better culture, leadership and compensation model.  What’s stopping them?

The aforementioned survey lays out three primary stumbling blocks:

  • 69% of Brokers Don’t Want to Start Their Own Firm
  • 54% of Brokers Say it is “Too Difficult” (legal and compliance)
  • 56% of Brokers Worry about their Firm’s Stance on Broker Protocol Agreements

It appears that the perception of those fears are greater than the reality.  A survey of brokers who made the move to the RIA channel said that the grass is greener:

  • 80% said the transition was easier than expected
  • 72% said they transitioned all the clients they wanted to keep

As the author of The End of Stress writes, “…97% of what you worry over is not much more than a fearful mind punishing you with exaggerations and misperceptions.” [2]

So, what is holding you back from making the move?



Are you a fiduciarY 100% of the time?






Jeff Thomas is the Founder/CEO of Archetype Wealth Partners. He has assembled an amazing team to provide an open architecture, fee-only (fiduciary) platform that offers a wide variety of investment choice to clients. Archetype exists to help families thrive across generations.


Disclaimer: Our intent in providing this material is purely for informational purposes, as of the date hereof, and may be subject to change without notice. This article does not intend to constitute accounting, legal, tax, or other professional advice. Visitors and readers should not act upon the content or information found here without first seeking appropriate advice from a trusted accountant, financial planner, lawyer or other professional.

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