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The Intersection of Multi-Family Offices and RIAs


The world of private wealth is complex and ever-evolving. As both multi-family offices (MFOs) and registered investment advisors (RIAs) continue to grow in popularity, the overlap between the two is becoming increasingly apparent. In this blog post, we'll delve into the intersection of MFOs and RIAs, and explore how these entities are working together to provide comprehensive wealth management services to high-net-worth individuals and families.

A Primer on Multi-Family Offices

MFOs are independent wealth management firms that serve multiple high-net-worth families. They offer a range of services, including investment management, financial planning, tax and estate planning, and family governance. MFOs are typically staffed by experienced professionals who work closely with families to understand their unique needs and create tailored solutions.

MFOs have become increasingly popular over the past few years, as more families look for comprehensive wealth management services that go beyond investment management. They offer centralized management and coordination of a family's wealth, which can be beneficial for families with complex needs.

Registered Investment Advisors and Their Role in Wealth Management

RIAs, on the other hand, are investment advisors that are registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or a state securities regulator. They provide investment management services to clients and are held to a fiduciary standard, meaning they are obligated to act in the best interest of their clients.

RIAs typically work with individual clients, rather than multiple families like MFOs. Their services include investment management, financial planning, and retirement planning, among others. RIAs can be independent firms or part of a larger financial institution.

The Intersection of MFOs and RIAs

As MFOs become more popular, their services are increasingly overlapping with those of RIAs. MFOs often focus on wealth management services beyond investment management, such as tax and estate planning and family governance. RIAs typically focus more on investment management.

However, many MFOs are incorporating investment management into their suite of services, and many RIAs are expanding their offerings to include comprehensive wealth management services. This has led to more collaboration between the two entities, as MFOs and RIAs work together to provide a more holistic approach to wealth management.

Benefits of Working with an MFO-RIA Hybrid

There are several benefits to working with an MFO-RIA hybrid. First, these entities can provide a more comprehensive approach to wealth management. By combining investment management, financial planning, tax and estate planning, and family governance, they can create a cohesive strategy that meets a family's unique needs.

Second, MFO-RIA hybrids can provide a more personalized approach to wealth management. They often have a deep understanding of a family's goals and values, which can inform their investment and planning strategies.

Finally, MFO-RIA hybrids offer centralized management and coordination of a family's wealth. This can be beneficial for families with complex needs or those who have multiple advisors.


The intersection of MFOs and RIAs is becoming increasingly common as both entities continue to grow in popularity. This collaboration can provide a more comprehensive and personalized approach to wealth management, benefiting high-net-worth individuals and families. As the world of private wealth continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see how MFOs and RIAs work together to meet the needs of their clients.

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