Karstens Investment Counsel (KIC) was established in 1993 and is a fee-only investment advisory firm. We strive to provide our clients with comprehensive expert advice, to uphold the highest standards of fiduciary care, and to deliver unparalleled personal service.
Our founder and president, Mike Karstens, built our firm to focus on two main areas: wealth management and retirement plan services. We are committed to meeting the unique needs of high-net-worth individuals and are well-qualified to serve you. For every client we accept, our goal is to form a long-term relationship built on the utmost professional ethics, trust, and service.
Many advisors claim to be independent, but upon further review, most are not. Karstens Investment Counsel (KIC) goes to great lengths in order to maintain our independence and to ensure that conflicts of interest, which are so prevalent in our business, are minimized.
Our compensation model is known as fee-only. KIC was one of the earliest adopters of this client-centric model, going fee-only in 1997. The fee-only model helps minimize conflicts of interest. We charge our clients directly for our advice. No other financial compensation is provided by any other institution—which means that we do not receive commissions or kickbacks for any products we sell. This gives our clients peace of mind, knowing that we are providing advice that is in their best interest, not ours. We do not engage in any business that might compromise our advice. We are a true partner wholly devoted to our clients’ financial affairs.
Many people often confuse “fee-based” with “fee-only,” but the terms have very different meanings. Most advisors these days are fee-based. In addition to charging clients a fee directly for advice, they may also receive payments for the products they sell or recommend. In our view, this can serve as a major conflict of interest that can lead to biased advice.