How To Choose And What To Look For In An Investment Counselling Firm?

You’re familiar with wealth management services offered by the Big 6 banks in Canada, but have you heard of those offered by boutique investment counselling firms? Investment counselling firms generally serve high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals and families who choose to delegate investment decisions to a trusted professional in the investment industry.

Are you looking to understand what an investment counsellor does, what to look for when choosing an investment counselling firm and how to choose an investment counsel in Canada? This article is for you.

What Does An Investment Counsellor Do?

The job of an investment counsellor is bespoke for all involved—discretionary wealth management services generally offered to wealthy individuals and families with the goal of helping them preserve and grow wealth, now and for the next generation, to create a strong and sustainable legacy.

Your private and dedicated investment counsellor works with you and your family to understand your unique current financial circumstances, ongoing financial needs, and future financial targets. They then create an Investment Policy Statement that sets stringent rules and acts as guide for how your wealth is to be managed on a day-to-day basis to meet your financial objectives through a customized investment portfolio.

What to Look For In An Investment Counselling Firm?

When choosing an investment counselling firm, it is important to ensure that your investment philosophies are aligned; however, you should also consider the following characteristics:

1. Trust

You need to have implicit trust in the person and/or firm that is managing your money.  This should be the foundation of your relationship with them. They should take all the worry and stress out of managing and growing your investments. Make sure to take the time to get to know the investment counsellor and to understand how they will be investing your money.

2. Communication

It is important to choose an investment counsellor that you are able to easily contact should you have a question about your portfolio. Speaking directly to the person managing your investments is important.

3. Transparency

Ensure that you are provided with a fully transparent statement package every quarter, in a timely manner, so that you understand what changes have been made in your portfolio and any fees that have been charged.

4. Compliance

Your investment counselling firm should have a stringent compliance regime in addition to a culture of fairness and integrity.

How To Choose An Investment Counsellor In Canada?

You may find it difficult to choose an investment counselling firm given the vast array of financial firms and individuals offering wealth management services in Canada. The Portfolio Management Association of Canada (PMAC) acts as a powerful resource to help you make an informed decision.

PMAC represents firms registered as “portfolio managers” whose focus is on investment management for clients and meets the highest conditions of registration with the provincial securities commissions. There are few firms in Canada allowed to provide discretionary investment management.

PMAC offers tools to help you find an Investment Counsel registered in Canada, including some of Canada’s oldest independent investment counselling firms that have operated successfully in various economic and market environments. As well, PMAC provides other useful resources such as tips on how to select a portfolio manager.  

The Bottom Line

It is important that you choose an investment counselling firm that has your best interests at heart to help you navigate the complexities of wealth. The advantages of working with a smaller independent or private investment counselling firm, such as Bloom Investment Counsel, Inc., include the ability to build a long-term trusting relationship between you, your family and your investment counsellor, to provide the personal attention and financial peace of mind you have been looking for.


Bloom Investment Counsel, Inc. is a well-established Toronto-based independent, privately-owned boutique investment management firm providing customized, actively managed, Canadian and U.S. dividend-paying portfolios for wealthy individuals, family offices, foundations, corporations, institutions and trusts.

Founded in 1985, Bloom has experience in managing in excess of $2.5B in assets over the years. We believe that generating independent cash flow is central to the success of our clients’ portfolios because it provides capital for the present day, if needed, while continuing to preserve and build wealth for the future.

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This content is provided for general informational purposes only and does not constitute financial, investment, tax, legal or accounting advice nor does it constitute an offer or solicitation to buy or sell any securities referred to. Individual circumstances and current events are critical to sound investment planning; anyone wishing to act on this content should consult with his or her financial partner or advisor.

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