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Choosing a Custodian

In this industry, relationships matter. So does finding the right custodian. Schwab continues to raise the bar as a tireless advocate for independent Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs).

What to consider when choosing an RIA custodian


What to consider when choosing an RIA custodian

1. Industry experience. It's something that can't be replicated. Look for a custodian that has spent years serving the type of RIA firm you want to build and grow. 

2. Technology and innovation. As an independent financial advisor, you control your relationships, but your technology defines the client experience. Prioritize a custodian that's committed to innovation—one with specialists who can help you tap the latest tech in the RIA model.

3. Business consulting and education. A lot goes into managing and growing an RIA firm. Whether you're transitioning accounts, adjusting a business strategy, or streamlining operations, you should have a custodian that's willing to roll up its sleeves and get to work for you. 

4. High-value services. Custody fees eat returns. Some custodians charge them, others don't. In addition to transparent pricing, look for a custodian that offers the high-value services that you want and your clients demand. Services like integrated banking experiences and charitable giving strategies can help your practice thrive as client expectations evolve.   

The right custodian can be a game changer for your practice. But most advisors don't know what they should expect—or what's possible. Put your current or potential custodian to the test with our helpful scorecard.

Like no other

No two custodians are the same. At Schwab, we've spent more than 35 years innovating on behalf of independent advisors and their complex needs. Learn how we lead the industry forward to better serve advisors like you.

Protecting client assets

We are committed to long-term financial health, and we hold ourselves to the highest standards of security when it comes to safeguarding your client's assets.

Protecting Client Assets

Foundational strength you can build on

Schwab's scale and reputation can give advisors confidence and a sturdy custodial foundation. Working with one of the most diversified financial services companies in the industry, you have an ally with the institutional strength to support growth for the long term.  

  • The Schwab difference

    Schwab is the industry leader—proudly supporting more independent advisors than any other custodian. Here's how we empower their success.

  • Advocacy

    Each year, we go to Washington, D.C. to inform policy and advocate for the health of the RIA industry. We put our weight behind initiatives that ensure your voice is heard.

  • Specialized services

    We proudly serve teams of all sizes and the ultra-high-net-worth and family office communities—simplifying complexity with a range of service models tailored to your business.

  • Events and networking

    Schwab hosts the largest annual gathering of independent advisors in the RIA industry. It's a week of engaging conversation and insights to help advisors like you capitalize on what's next.


Not all custodians are created equal

Put us to the test. Ask a Schwab Business Development Officer about the experience, technology, insights, and value we can offer to your RIA firm.  

All conversations are completely confidential.

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