Tavares | Winter Park | The Villages

Ruggie Wealth Management Affiliates with Industry-leading Registered Investment Advisory Firm

Tavares, FL 7/2/18 –Ruggie Wealth Management, an independent investment and wealth management firm with three Central Florida locations, is excited to announce its alignment with Carson Group Partners, a partnership community of professional advisory firms across the U.S.

Thomas H. Ruggie, ChFC®, CFP®, President of Ruggie Wealth Management, will remain in charge of all business decisions and operations, and Ruggie Wealth Management will continue as an independent firm. The alignment highlights the close relationship between Ruggie, and his friend, mentor and financial coach of more than 15 years, Ron Carson CFP®, ChFC®, founder of Omaha-based Carson Wealth and Carson Group Partners. Both firms bring well-respected brands to the relationship and share a deeply-held commitment to delivering a proactive game plan and straightforward transparency to the clients they serve.

“We are excited to be aligning with a like-minded group of leading innovators who share a deep industry knowledge, vast network of specialized services, demonstrated investment strategies and abiding passion for serving clients,” said Ruggie.

“Our top priority has always been to help our clients pursue their long-term goals and aspirations. Because of this alignment, our bench strength and support for operational functions such as compliance and trading are being enhanced, as is our access to leading-edge technology following Carson’s $52 million technology-platform investment. 

“Ron and I have been recognized among the nation’s most trusted advisors, and we are extremely excited for what our partnership will mean for our firm, our clients and the future of financial services,” added Ruggie.

“The marketplace is clamoring for high value, no matter the industry or profession,” said Carson. “Investors are demanding more and more from advisors. The Ruggie Wealth team recognized this shift taking place under our feet and made some extraordinary leaps in the future growth of their firm. Their clients will see the immediate effects by having increased access to more resources, fee/cost reduction, an innovative online experience, more investment options, enhanced high net-worth planning and succession strategies.”

In addition to being a mainstay in the Barron’s annual list of top wealth management firms, Carson Group was recently added to the Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest growing companies, the Forbes list of America’s Top Wealth Advisors and was recognized by InvestmentNews as one of a select few Innovators in financial services.


About Ruggie Wealth Management

The flagship company of Central-Florida-based Ruggie Capital Group, Ruggie Wealth Management manages individual and corporate wealth, as well as the assets of select endowments and foundations. For more than 25 years, Founder Tom Ruggie has leveraged his entrepreneurial spirit, investment strategy and steadfast dedication to client service into a nationally-recognized firm which, along with its principals, advises on nearly $650 million in assets. Ruggie Wealth has been recognized among America’s Top 1200 Financial Advisors six times by Barron’s, among America’s Top 300 Advisors three times in a row by the Financial Times, and Ruggie serves on the Forbes Finance Council.  He is also a philanthropist who founded The Tom and Kim Ruggie Family Foundation. Visit them at ruggiewealth.com, 352.343.2700 or by email at truggie@ruggiewealth.com.

*Barron’s magazine, October 20, 2014 issue. The Barron’s rankings are based on data provided by over 4,000 of the nation’s most productive advisors. Factors included in the rankings: assets under management, revenue produced for the firm, regulatory record, quality of practice and philanthropic work. Investment performance isn’t an explicit component because not all advisors have audited results and because performance figures often are influenced more by clients’ risk tolerance than by an advisor’s investment-picking abilities. 

Investment advisory services offered through RWM Asset Management, LLC, Ruggie Capital Group, Inc. and CWM, LLC, these firms are SEC Registered Investment Advisors. Carson Group Partners, a division of CWM, LLC, is a nationwide partnership of advisors. RWM Asset Management, LLC, Ruggie Capital Group, Inc. and CWM, LLC are unaffiliated investment advisory firms.


P:: 352.343.2700   |   F:: 352.742.2607   |   2100 Lake Eustis Dr.   |   Tavares, FL 32778

Investment advisory services offered through RWM Asset Management, LLC, Ruggie Capital Group, Inc. and CWM, LLC. These firms are

SEC Registered Investment Advisors. Carson Group Partners, a division of CWM, LLC, is a nationwide partnership of advisors.

RWM Asset Management, LLC, Ruggie Capital Group, Inc. and CWM, LLC are unaffiliated investment advisory firms.

Seven Steps to Protect Yourself After the Equifax Breach


Seven steps to protect yourself after the equifax breach

From May through July, hackers exploited a website vulnerability at Equifax, one of the major consumer credit reporting agencies. This breach affected 143 million Americans. If you have a credit report, there is a chance your sensitive and personal information including Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and driver’s license numbers, may have fallen into the wrong hands.

Fraudsters could use this equity breach to obtain additional non-public financial information to steal funds. Please take extra steps to verify the identity of any person who contacts you and requests personal information, financial or otherwise. (For example, end the conversation and use the contact information you have on file to reach out to the caller/emailer.) If you have any questions about this, please call us to discuss.

What specific steps should you take now that Equifax has had a security breach?

Here are steps you can take now to help protect your assets and credit:

  1. Find out if you were affected. From a secure computer or encrypted network connection, go to the Equifax website, www.equifaxsecurity2017.com. Scroll down and click on ‘Potential Impact.’ You will be asked to provide your last name and the last six digits of your Social Security number.
  2. Enroll in TrustedID Premier. If your data has been breached, Equifax will offer enrollment in TrustedID Premier. The program provides up to $1 million in ID theft insurance, Social Security Number Scanning, 3-bureau credit file monitoring, and the option to freeze your Equifax credit report.
  3. Place a fraud alert or credit freeze on your other credit reports. Experian, TransUnion, and Innovis also provide credit reporting services. Contact each of the companies to place an alert or a freeze on your credit report:
    • A fraud alert warns both current and prospective lenders they must take reasonable steps to verify your identity before providing credit. When you’re a victim of ID theft, an alert can be put in place for up to seven years.
    • A credit freeze is different. It restricts access to your credit report. If you request a freeze, the credit agency will send a letter with a personal ID number (PIN). Keep the PIN in a safe place. You’ll need it to unfreeze your accounts, according to the Federal Trade Commission.
  4. Change your passwords. Create new passwords for online banking, brokerage, and financial accounts. Each account should have a unique password. Best practices suggest passwords have 12 to 14 characters. 

    You may want to consider using a password management application. They’re designed to store and retrieve passwords so you can keep track of multiple long, unique password combinations without security issues like storing passwords improperly or failing to remember them.

  5. Activate two-factor authentication. Two-factor authentication provides an additional layer of security for email and other accounts. After you enter your user ID and password, you’ll be asked for a code to verify your identity. You can have the account provider text a code to your phone, although that creates vulnerability if your phone is stolen. A better option may be to download an authenticator app so you can generate your own code.
  6. Beware email links. Some fraud attempts are obvious: text or email from a Nigerian prince or an update request from a financial institution where you don’t have an account. Others may be more difficult to spot. As a rule of thumb, if you receive an email with a link requesting you update or make changes to a financial account, don’t click on it. Call the financial institution or go directly to its website to make any changes.
  7. Keep an eye on your accounts. Check bank, brokerage, and other financial statements for suspicious transactions. If you find unauthorized activity, report it to the institution and the proper authorities.

How does Ruggie Wealth protect your information?

An occurrence such as the one which occurred with Equifax is troubling and may lead you to ask, “How does Ruggie Wealth protect my information?” 

Rest assured, our custodians have a robust program to protect client accounts and information. We use security measures that comply with federal law, including computer safeguards, with secured files and buildings. Also, Our team members are trained in the proper handling of clients’ personal information and security and are required to adhere to Ruggie Wealth protocols. 

Additionally, we have tight controls regarding who has access to client information, which is limited to those requiring such information to perform their job functions. Strict authentication standards are in place to prevent unauthorized access to client accounts online or by phone. 

If you have any questions or concerns about this breach or the markets, please contact us.

RWM Ahead of the Curve: Why the Fiduciary Rule is Important

The Department of Labor (DOL) Fiduciary Rule, expanding the “investment advice fiduciary” definition under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), requires that all financial professionals who work with retirement plans or provide retirement planning advice act as a fiduciary, bound legally and ethically to ‘act in the best interest of their clients, and put their clients’ interests above their own.”

It leaves no room for advisors to conceal any potential conflict of interest, and states that all fees and commissions must be clearly disclosed to clients.

Ruggie Wealth Management was well ahead of the curve, choosing to be bound by fiduciary standards to act in our clients’ best interests a long time before the rule change.

Fiduciary is a much higher level of accountability than the suitability standard previously required of financial salespersons, such as brokers, planners and insurance agents, who work with retirement plans and accounts. The suitability responsibility merely meant that an advisor was legally required to make recommendations that were “suitable” for a client’s objective.

It is expected those advisors who work on commission, such as brokers and insurance agents, will be impacted the most.

We applaud the new ruling, and believe it will increase and streamline transparency, and most of all, help to prevent abuses on the part of financial advisors who resort to excessive commissions and investment churning for reasons of compensation.

If you’d like to know more about how working with a fiduciary benefits you, call us at 352.343.2700 to talk with one of our Advisors.

Ruggie Wealth Management Named to 2018 Financial Times 300 Top Registered Investment Advisers

For the third year in a row, Ruggie Wealth Management is pleased to announce it has been named to the Financial Times 300 Top Registered Investment Advisers (RIAs) from among more than 12,000 SEC-registered RIAs across the U.S. 

“We’re very honored to receive recognition as one of the finest investment management firms by one of the world’s most prestigious and influential financial publications,” said Thomas H. Ruggie, ChFC®, CFP®, President of Ruggie Wealth Management.

“For 25 years, we’ve worked to make a meaningful improvement in the financial lives of our clients, and I believe this recognition is another wonderful yardstick by which to measure our team’s success,” he added.

More than 1,500 RIA firms were pre-screened prior to their consideration, and then evaluated across six criteria: assets under management (AUM); AUM growth rate; years in existence; advanced industry credentials of the firm’s advisers; online accessibility; and compliance records. There are no fees or other considerations required of RIAs that apply for the FT 300.

This is the fifth annual FT 300 list, produced independently by the Financial Times in collaboration with Ignites Research, a subsidiary of the Financial Times that provides business intelligence on the investment management industry.

According to them, “The final FT 300 represents an impressive cohort of elite RIA firms, as the “average” practice in this year’s list has been in existence for over 22 years and manages $4 billion in assets. The FT 300 Top RIAs hail from 38 states and Washington, D.C.”

Ruggie Wealth Management provides services to individual and corporate clients, as well as to a select group of endowments and foundations. As the flagship company of Ruggie Capital Group, Ruggie Wealth offers a broad range of services and products to help clients achieve their financial goals. Ruggie Capital Group recently developed a multi-family office called Destiny Family Office – which expands their continuum of services to high-net worth and ultra-high net worth clients.

The firm has offices in Tavares, Winter Park, and The Villages®, FL.

The Financial Times 300 Top Registered Investment Advisers is an independent listing produced annually by the Financial Times (June 2018). The FT 300 is based on data gathered from RIA firms, regulatory disclosures, and the FT’s research. The listing reflected each practice’s performance in six primary areas: assets under management, asset growth, compliance record, years in existence, credentials and online accessibility. This award does not evaluate the quality of services provided to clients and is not indicative of the practice’s future performance. Neither the RIA firms nor their employees pay a fee to The Financial Times in exchange for inclusion in the FT 300.

Barron’s Honors Winning Mentality in Wealth Management

Tom Ruggie doesn’t believe in shortcuts—whether choosing investments for his clients or getting through his CrossFit WOD (workout of the day). “I choose to do the most difficult workouts appropriate to my ability, and push from there.” For 25 years, he has applied this sort of winning mentality to his wealth management business, which, in part, explains his recognition among Barron’s Top 1200 Financial Advisors five times. 

Tom attributes Ruggie Wealth Management’s success in large part to delivering a ‘fiduciary’ standard of client care—in which clients’ interests are placed first and foremost. “There is a tremendous need for fiduciary advice, free from conflicts of interest. I strongly feel that as independent Registered Investment Advisors we have a significant competitive advantage in our clients’ eyes, because we have positioned ourselves as objective champions of their financial success. We want to do things right, and that includes investing for a clear purpose that’s spelled out in depth in clients’ financial plans. We believe in making realistic financial projections, investing for the long term, communicating weekly, and when necessary, delivering hard messages about spending and retirement dates to keep clients on course. As a result, Ruggie Wealth has maintained steady asset growth, and rarely loses a client.

I love building teams and competing. Our team takes pride in playing a critical role in helping clients from across the wealth spectrum achieve their goals — ranging from a comfortable retirement to giving away fortunes. And for that, there is no shortcut.”

From the very first phone call…

Tom Ruggie is many things. He is a husband, father, entrepreneur, sports enthusiast, Chartered Financial Consultant®, Certified Financial Planner™, and one of Barron’s Top 1200 Financial Advisors for the fifth time. Whatever the hat, he embraces making excellence a prerequisite. In fact, he has made it a cornerstone of how he and his Ruggie Wealth Management team serve our clients. You see, they believe that once the big things are done, it is often the little things that distinguish good from great. “Little things” like promptly returning phone calls or emails, immediately taking action when a need arises, proactively reaching out with new opportunities, and just checking in to see how things are going…all the things they don’t actually consider “little” at all.

From the very first phone call, Tom and the Ruggie Wealth Management team want to prove to you what it is like to have one of the top wealth management firms in the country make you their top priority. If this is the type of Financial Advisors you want, let’s talk. Call us today at 352.343-2700.


With Taxes Filed, Opportunity Knocks

The deadline for filing federal tax returns was midnight last night. Many are exhaling with a sigh of relief while others may be searching for answers and reevaluating their financial strategy for the short and long term. This is an obvious opportunity to make a good review of today’s financial reality to project tomorrow’s path forward.

Barron’s recognized Tom Ruggie and the Ruggie Wealth Management team apply various components of our wealth management approach that come together through a comprehensive suite of services. We analyze your retirement plans and intentions, employee benefits, and estate plan. The results establish a foundation for personalized asset allocation recommendations, as well as specific investment strategies.

We will optimize your financial plan in an effort to minimize your fees, decrease tax exposure, ensure readiness for important milestones including education funding. We also seek to mitigate insurable risks, and maximize the impact of your charitable giving.

Call us today at 352.343.2700. We are here to answer your questions and help you discover options to move forward with confidence in your financial strategy.

Securing An Estate Plan Brings Peace of Mind Today and Provides Hope for Tomorrow

It has been said by many wise people in various ways that studying our past gives context to the present and hope for tomorrow. Assessing your financial history and current reality leads into creating an estate plan as a part of your comprehensive financial strategy. Having an estate plan can be one of the most effective ways of lowering estate taxes while providing for your family’s needs today and leaving a legacy for the future. As your estate planning partner, Ruggie Wealth Management may:

  • Coordinate with your attorney and CPA to implement your estate plan from beginning to end
  • Retitle assets to reduce or eliminate estate taxes or avoid probate
  • Conduct routinely scheduled planning reviews
  • Review and coordinate your philanthropic/charitable contributions

Ruggie Wealth Management has the experience and industry recognition to help you develop a reliable and secure estate plan. Founder and CEO of Ruggie Wealth Management, Tom Ruggie, was named a Top 1200 Advisor by Barron’s Magazine for the fifth time and a third year in a row. Among the factors, the ranking takes into consideration are the quality of practice, assets under management, revenues, and philanthropic work.

At Ruggie Wealth, we aren’t here to push product or personality. Our passion is to serve people and to see your financial goals come to life and find success. Call us today at (352) 343-2700 to ask any questions or to set up a time to meet with our wealth management advisors. We are ready to help.

Team Exceptionalism Is the Strength Behind Ruggie Recognitions

We are excited Ruggie Wealth Management (RWM) Founder and CEO Tom Ruggie has been recognized as a Barron’s Top 1200 Financial Advisor and is one of only about 20 advisors nationwide invited to join the elite Forbes Finance Council.

However, Tom would be the first to tell you these recognitions are only possible because he is surrounded by an extraordinary team who provide principled, unbiased, client-first service. Our team takes the time to understand our clients and their needs and takes very seriously their fiduciary responsibility to put their clients’ needs above their own. Doing so helps ensure our clients can enjoy the confidence and peace-of-mind that comes from having their investments handled wisely, and their financial lives simplified and organized.

For your free consultation, call us today at (352) 343-2700 or learn more about our team by clicking here.

Pragmatic Retirement Planning by Professionals You Can Trust

When it comes to your retirement, we reject formulaic answers or cookie-cutter plans. At Ruggie Wealth Management, we avoid the temptation to idealize the road ahead. Instead, we look at where you are and where you need to be financially by looking at multiple indicators that can help you prepare and improve your financial health in the years ahead. We think through multiple scenarios, (for example, how do you best avoid outliving your money), provide action steps to help set you on the right course, monitor how you’re doing, and consistently communicate where you are in meeting your goals.

Our innovative Ruggie Method Distribution Strategy replaces conventional evaluation processes which determine how and when an individual’s retirement savings should be distributed, with a statistical method. This Ruggie Method Distribution Strategy is also ideal for helping foundations determine the optimum annual distribution of their portfolio balances.

These are just some of the reason, Ruggie Wealth Management Founder and CEO Tom Ruggie, ChFC®, CFP®, has been named to Barron’s 2017 list of America’s Top 1,200 Advisors, the fifth time he has earned this distinction, and the third time in a row.

Factors this ranking takes into consideration include quality of practice, assets under management, revenues, and philanthropic work. As Tom has invested into his career and company, Ruggie Wealth Management will invest in you, your financial strategy and retirement plan.

Call us today at (352) 343-2700 to ask any questions or to set up a time to meet with our wealth management advisors. Planning for the future starts today. We are here to help.

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