Rebalance IRA Review – Is This Robo-Advisor Right For You?

Rebalance IRA Review - logo

Rebalance IRA is now Rebalance360 with Financial Management Services for Wealthier Individuals

If you are a wealthier individual looking for reasonably priced investment management along with smartly diversified investment portfolios, then Rebalance360 formerly known as Rebalance IRA might be for you. Originally named Rebalance IRA, the firm’s services have expanded from retirement investment management to full service financial guidance for mass affluent clients.

Founded by Mitch Tuchman and Scott Puritz, Rebalance IRA was among the earliest online investment advisory service or robo-advisor. Tuchman was influenced by some of the smartest passive indexing minds, Burton Malkiel, John Bogle and Charles Ellis.

The Rebalance360 plan directly manages your IRA, taxable brokerage trust or other accounts. They also provide advice on employer sponsored plans, as well as advice for non-retirement financial situations. And even though the name includes IRA, they can also manage taxable accounts.

*Disclosure: Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which means that – at zero cost to you – I might earn a commission if you sign up or buy through the affiliate link.

Rebalance360 is not a typical robo-advisor, and actually represents something of a hybrid between robo-advisors and live human financial advisors. Rebalance IRA could be compared with Personal Capital or Betterment Premium.

While Retirely offers similar retirement services, targeted for older and smaller investors.

Rebalance IRA
  • Fees
    (3.5)
  • Investment Choices
    (4)
  • Ease of Use
    (5)
  • Tool & Resources
    (4.5)
4.3

Rebalance IRA Review

Best for:

  • Investors who might ordinarily choose a traditional financial advisor.
  • Investors with more than $300,000 and are seeking retirement account management.

Pros

  • Many account types available.
  • Offers live advisors for financial planning.

 

Cons

  • In contrast with most robo-advisors, fees are high.
  • High initial investment minimum of $300,000.

What is Rebalance IRA?

Rebalance360 or Rebalance IRA is a comprehensive and holistic financial planning service with well-constructed and diversified investment portfolios designed to mesh with your goals and risk level. The service combines seasoned and credentialed CFP financial advisors who spearhead your investment strategy with digitally managed investment portfolios. But unlike a typical robo-advisor, Rebalance360 has abundant human oversight to make sure your financial life, investments and goals are aligned.

But another important area where they depart from digital-only robo-advisors is that they provide live financial advice.

Although there are other robo-advisors that incorporate live financial advisor access for all users like SigFig, Personal Capital Advisors and SoFi Invest.

This is a key benefit for those who want access to an advisor for those frequent money questions.

Rebalance is most similar to a traditional financial planning firm, but for a lower fee. The services at Rebalance360 are among the most competitive financial management robo advisory offers when compared with a typical financial planner.

How Does Rebalance IRA Work?

Similar to Vanguard Personal Advisor Services, your investment process begins with a conversation with a financial advisor. After sign up, you’ll have access to the entire Rebalance360 program.

When you sign on with Rebalance IRA you work with both a retirement investment advisor and a retirement service representative.

The Rebalance360 plan encompasses three components:

Invest360 – A low-fee, globally diversified index fund investment portfolio.

This service is designed for taxable accounts, as well as non-taxable accounts. It uses the same investment methodology Rebalance IRA uses with retirement accounts, but customizes it for taxable accounts.

Plan360 – This is the planning component of the Rebalance IRA platform. This is your financial roadmap, designed just for you and your goals. The Rebalance360 program helps you understand how much you need to save and invest to meet your goals. You also find out what you can spend today and in retirement.

Plan360 goes beyond retirement planning. It helps you to invest for financial goals you may need to reach before retirement. Rebalance IRA creates a plan for you, then they check in with you regularly to make sure you’re still on track. If not, they’ll make recommended adjustments for your spending habits.

Advise360 – Advise360 is designed to provide advice to help you deal with ordinary financial situations, beyond saving and investing. It can help you with refinancing your house, choosing the right insurance policies, and saving for your kids college educations. This is where Rebalance360 is most similar to a traditional financial advisor.

Advise360 gives you access to a team of advisers, but also a comprehensive library of white papers, articles , and videos.

Rebalance IRA Robo Advising Features at a Glance

FeaturesRebalance IRA
Overview

Investment advisory service specializing in retirement account management

Minimum Investment Amount$300,000
Top FeaturesCertified Financial Planners for all customers. Branch access at Fidelity and Schwab. 
Low-fee diversified index fund investment portfolio.
Retirement and non-retirement account management available.
Fee Structure0.70% - 0.25% AUM fee. 
$250 one-time setup fee
Trading costs average between $50 - $70 each time your account is rebalanced - twice per year
Accounts Available

Individual and joint taxable accounts; traditional, Roth, SEP, SIMPLE and rollover IRAs; Regular and Solo 401(k) plans; trusts, custodial, partnerships, and non-profit accounts.

Investment Funds53 low fee stock and bond ETFs representing 20 asset classes.
Contact & Investing AdviceAvailable by phone and email, Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 8:30 pm, Eastern Time
Free Services

Education articles and white papers available on the website

Who is the Rebalance360 Robo-Advisor Best For?

There are trillions of dollars sitting in self-directed retirement accounts, much of it owned by people who may not be investment savvy. Rebalance IRA is suited to manage self-directed IRA and investment accounts to maximize investment returns and reach desired retirement goals.

Rebalance360 is a good choice for anyone who is looking specifically for advice in managing their retirement accounts.

Those with a smaller asset base, might consider the Retirable Investment Managaer:

Obviously, with the $300,000 minimum investment requirement, the Rebalance360 is good for those who have already begun their retirement saving and investing.

Rebalance IRA is convenient for those who already have their IRA’s with Fidelity or Charles Schwab, as that is where the firm manages your account.

The service is also an excellent alternative to high cost human investment advisors. You can get advice on managing your personal financial situation, apart from retirement. It’s like having a financial planner, but with a lower management fee.

Rebalance 360 process

Rebalance IRA Drill Down

Fees

The fees are charged based upon your account size or assets under management.

Account SizeAUM Fee
$300,000 to $1,000,0000.70%
$1,000,000 to $5,000,0000.50%
+$5,000,0000.25%
Rebalance360 Management Fee

Additional fees include:

  • $250 set up charge per account.
  • ETF fees average 0.15% and go directly to the fund administrator.
  • Transaction charges when account is rebalanced biannually average between $25 to $50 per account.

Minimum Investment Required

$300,000

Customer Service

We like the availability of live customer service personnel. You can talk to someone about your account or account set up from Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 8:30 pm EST.

Email is also available.

Financial advisory meetings available by appointment.

User Experience – Sign-Up Process

The signup process with Rebalance IRA works a bit differently than other robo-advisors. Instead of beginning with an online application, you have a conversation with the financial advisor.

This quite similar to Vanguard Personal Advisor Services where the advisor drives the investment process.

You’ll start the conversation by providing your name, email address, phone number, time zone, and approximate account size.

Armed with that information, you’ll have a phone conversation with a financial advisor, to discuss your financial goals, risk tolerance and time horizon.

During the conversation you’ll determine your current asset allocation. After answering a slate of risk related questions, you’ll create the best asset allocation for you, going forward.

This information helps the financial advisor determine how conservative or aggressive your portfolio needs to be.

Finally, the advisor integrates all of the findings and then creates an investment plan for you.

One of the major advantages of the live phone conversation is that you will have an opportunity to ask any questions you have, either about your goals and investments.

Once all the information has been provided, and you agree to the portfolio provided, your account will be up and running within 5 to 7 business days. If necessary, you’ll be required to move your current accounts over to either Fidelity or Charles Schwab.

Access to Human Financial Advice

The live financial advisors at Rebalance360 are one of the best features at this robo-advisor. They have Certified Financial Planners® on staff and you can make an appointment at your convenience.

Additionally, financial advice extends to all of your accounts, at Rebalance360 and at other financial firms. You can discuss your personal financial situation with your advisor, who can advise you on how to save money for the down payment on a home, or even how to manage your budget to make sure you’ll have plenty of money to meet your financial goals.

It is recommended that clients schedule an annual meeting to discuss their complete financial situation and determine if anything has changed over the year.

The live meeting will discuss your retirement goals. This is also an opportunity to discuss any changes in your situation, having to do with your risk tolerance, investment goals, or time horizon.

We like the availability of CFP® advisors. They are well-trained and able to deal with a wide range of financial concerns.

In a very real way, Rebalance IRA bridges the gap between robo-advisors and traditional human investment advisors.

Security

As with most financial platforms, Rebalance IRA uses state-of-the-art data security and encryption services. The firm complies with SEC privacy laws and protects all personal information.

The investments held within the Schwab and Fidelity accounts and are protected by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) up to $500,000 in securities and $100,000 in cash.

“Both firms provide an extra level of coverage from Lloyd’s of London for nearly unlimited amounts of securities and up to $1.9 million in cash.”

~Rebalance website

Top Robo-Advisors

Robo AdvisorManagement FeeInvestment Minimum
m1 finance image
M1 Finance
None$100Sign up
None$1.00Sign up
wealthfront review logo
Wealthfront
0.25% of AUM ($5,000 managed for free)$500Sign up
ellevest logo$1-$9 per month NoneSign up
schwab intelligent portfolios logoBasic-None Premium-$30/month ($300 set up fee)$5,000Sign up
Betterment logo0.25% of AUM (free managment promo)NoneSign up

Investing Strategy

Rebalance IRA uses Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) to create and manage your portfolio. The firm uses asset allocation to increase investment return while lowering risk.

They start by assessing your current assets and allocations. That involves looking at your retirement accounts and brokerage accounts. Next, they identify areas in your portfolio that need improvement. This can include better coordinating your asset allocations with your risk tolerance. They then recommend a portfolio, customized to help you reach your financial goals.

Rebalance IRA uses a passive management strategy, working to match the market, rather than out-perform it.

Investment Asset Classes

Each asset class is represented by an exchange traded fund (ETF).

ETFs are index-based, and typically have lower expenses than mutual funds. The funds are selected from offerings by Vanguard, iShares, and other well regarded fund families.

Your portfolio is built around your personal risk tolerance and comprised of up to six asset classes, including:

  • US stocks
  • Foreign developed stocks
  • Emerging market stocks
  • Real estate
  • US bonds

However, the firm doesn’t disclose the specific ETFs used. We prefer more transparency in the available ETF list.

Portfolio Rebalancing

Portfolio rebalancing takes place an average of twice each year.

Rebalancing is the practice of buying or selling securities within the account to return to an initially decided asset mix.

For example, assume you decided upon a 60% and 40% bond portfolio. If during the year the stock market fell and the bond market value remained steady your asset allocation might drift to 50% stocks and 50% bonds.

In that case, Rebalance IRA would sell some of your bond investments and buy more stock funds to return to your preferred 60% stock – 40% bond mix.

Some robo-advisors rebalance more frequently than twice per year.

Our opinion is that there is no significant advantage to more frequent rebalancing. Actually, more frequent rebalancing could hurt your returns should you sell stocks during a period where they were increasing in value. Rebalancing too frequently could mean you miss out on potential gains.

Tax-loss Harvesting

Tax-loss harvesting is available for taxable accounts.

When investments are owned within a taxable account, tax-loss harvesting has the potential to offset investment gains with investment losses. This lowers your overall tax bill and might also boost returns.

Rebalance IRA Robo-Advisor Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Rebalance360 works was initially designed for retirement accounts, but it can also work with a variety of other accounts, including taxable ones.
  • Financial advice goes beyond retirement planning, and can help you with other money decisions, such as purchasing a home or planning for your children’s college educations.
    Provides 401(k) assistance to help maintain a holistic approach to your retirement planning.
    All accounts are held with Fidelity and Charles Schwab, two of the largest and most innovative investment platforms in the industry.
  • Many available account types.

Cons

  • The minimum account size is $300,000 which excludes new and small investors.
  • Rebalance IRA is higher on fees than other hybrid robo-advisors. But the individualized financial advice, might offset the management fee. This is higher than other popular robo-advisors with access to live advisors like Betterment and Ellevest. Both of these robo-advisors offer financial advisors and lower fees. While Retirable has advisors, no minimum and lowers fees to zero for assets greater than $500,000.
  • Flat fees apply, including $250 for initial set up, plus $50 to $70 for rebalancing, which takes place twice each year. These are not typically charged by other robo-advisors.

Rebalance IRA Wrap Up

Rebalance360 has more in common with traditional financial advisors than many hybrid robo advisors.Rebalance360 provides all the benefits you expect from an automated investment platform and it also offers a generous amount of live support from a dedicated financial advisor.

In this way, Rebalance IRA is much closer to a traditional human investment advisor. And in that regard, their fees are much lower than what you’ll pay for those services, in most cases. Meanwhile, you’ll also have access to your financial advisor for making non-retirement financial decisions.

This service is really a financial advisor with a robo-advisor component. It’s worth investigating if you’ve been looking for direct assistance with your retirement plans, but want more of a human touch than you’ll typically get from the average robo-advisor.

If you’d like more information, or you’d like to open an account, visit the Rebalance IRA website.

Personal Capital vs Betterment Comparison

FeaturesBettermentPersonal Capital
OverviewGoals-based digital investment manager and advisor-led robo advisor. All clients have access to Certified Financial Planners and cash management.Personal Capital offers stellar free investment management tools. Their paid money management platform is comprehensive, and includes Certified Financial Planners for all.
Minimum Investment AmountDigital-no minimum 
Premium-$100,000 minimum
No minimum for use of free financial and investment management tools.
Personal Capital Advisors-$100,000
Fee StructureDigital-0.25%  AUM
Premium-0.40% AUM
Zero fees for access to free investment management tracking & recommendations.
Personal Capital Advisors fees decline as assets increase.
$1,000,0000-$3,000,000 .89% AUM down to
0.49% AUM for accounts over $10,000,000.
Top FeaturesDigital and live investment management with CFP advisors. Socially-responsible, income and smart beta portfolios. Tax-loss harvesting. Cash management.Paid feature includes access CFP advisor. Investment, financial account analysis, and recommendations, retirement planner, rebalancing, tax-loss harvesting, saving and spending tracker, retirement planner.
Promotions and WebsiteFree Betterment investment management promotionFREE investment, saving, spending, retirement planning tools.

Methodology

  • Fees – Robo advisory fees range from free to 1% of AUM. Lower fees receive higher rankings, while higher fees are awarded lower rankings. In general, fees are considered in contrast with other robo-advisors as well as within the sphere of traditional financial advisors.
  • Investment Choices – Investment choices range from four funds on up to more than twenty fund choices. Investment choices also span various investment strategy portfolios and access to ETFs and stocks. Robo advisors with greater fund and strategy choices receive higher rankings. Those with fewer options receive lower scores.
  • Ease of Use – This category covers the User Experience or UX. Platforms with clear menu items and easy access to the platform features receive higher marks than more obtuse websites and those which are more difficult to navigate.
  • Tools and Resources – Platforms with richly populated “Frequently Asked Questions”, Educational articles, Videos, Calculators, and Tools receive the highest marks.

All Robo-Advisor Reviews are ranked and rated based upon the entire pool of digital and hybrid investment platforms. The Ranking uses a one through five star system. Following are the four criteria and index to ranking criteria:

Investors should use the ranking system in conjunction with the written review and their own assessment of the robo advisor’s website to make their own investment management provider decisions.

Disclosure: Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which means that – at zero cost to you – I might earn a commission if you sign up or buy through the affiliate link. That said, I never recommend anything I don’t  believe is valuable

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *