Iar without book

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Sep 10, 2009 9:28 pm

I live in the NY city area, Does anyone know of a RIA that I could parner with to be a IAR, It seems most RIA are only looking for established brokers with book of business, I am new to investments, However I have a client base from life insurance and feel I can bring over some good business, Any advice would be appreciated.

Sep 10, 2009 11:42 pm

Why don't you start building a book at an insurance b/d, become an IAR there, keep doing your needs-based selling (life, DI, LTC) while you build up your managed-money and then go to work for an RIA, keep a producers contract with your former insurance company so you keep your renewals and continue to have their suite of insurance products available to you?

Sep 11, 2009 6:33 am

Berk's comments are good, unless there's some reason you wish to exit your insurance activities. If you wish to find a suitable environment to be an IAR without an existing book, I would try to find a firm that's in the Schwab or TD Ameritrade referral network. Both Schwab and TD custody accounts for RIAs and allow the larger ones who have been vetted to market their firms in-branch and receive referrals from branch brokers. Rather than an SMA at a wire house where the broker still controls the relationship, at Schwab and TD the branch broker will set up a meeting where they are present with the client and the IAR for the RIA firm in question. If the client goes with the firm, the account changes from a retail to institution and the relationship leaves the Schwab or TD branch, being managed by the IAR. I would walk into a couple Schwab or TD branches, ask for a minute of time with the branch manager or a rep who has a minute, and ask about any of the NUMEROUS RIA firms that are prospecting them on a daily basis. They'll know who's on the way out, and these are the guys you'll ultimately be pitching anyway. Or just ask for an available list of the firms they can refer and call the CEOs yourself. While Schwab's referral platform is far superior, TD might be a better place to inquire about their network firms since at Schwab the RIA has to have a brick and mortar office in the area. At TD, this isn't the case. You could become the NY rep for a Boston or Chicago based RIA if they're already in the TD network.



Get with an RIA firm that has some type of network like this or if not, just start your own RIA. It's not nearly as much of a regulatory hassle as affiliating with an indy BD. There's no reason to give up part of your payout to someone else unless they're providing a service like the referrals described above. Good luck.

Sep 11, 2009 10:30 am

Berk the reason I am leaving my insurance firm and sacrificing my renewals basically boils down to number 1, The office where I am an agent does not have training or basic support for investments as they like to point out they are an insurance company not investment company, and seem to think that a whole life insurance is the answer to all planning issues,

Number 2, the community I live in is saturated with whole life salesman that call themselves financial planners, I want to stand out over the competition and create a reputation of being an advisor not somone looking to sell them something.
 
Xbanker thank you very much for the advice I will look into it. I am actualy considering opening my own RIA, However I am concerned that compliance issues would be overwhelming and take up to much time, do you agree? or is it mannagable?
Sep 11, 2009 10:50 am
ambitious:

Berk the reason I am leaving my insurance firm and sacrificing my renewals basically boils down to number 1, The office where I am an agent does not have training or basic support for investments as they like to point out they are an insurance company not investment company, and seem to think that a whole life insurance is the answer to all planning issues,

Number 2, the community I live in is saturated with whole life salesman that call themselves financial planners, I want to stand out over the competition and create a reputation of being an advisor not somone looking to sell them something.
 
Xbanker thank you very much for the advice I will look into it. I am actualy considering opening my own RIA, However I am concerned that compliance issues would be overwhelming and take up to much time, do you agree? or is it mannagable?




 
Don't let the other agents/advisors in your office define what you do.  Hit your minimum contract and don't worry about the managers.  There are several threads on here dedicated to the insurance b/d out there such as NML, Met, Mass Mutual, Guardian, etc. interview with a few of them and see what kind of vibe you get.  The search function is located on top of each page on Reg Rep.  If you're doing your job protecting your investment clients you should easily be able to hit your insurance sales bogey while focusing your efforts on building a book of managed money if that's what you want to do. 
 
Any of these companies would jump at the chance to get an experienced producer on their books.
 
 
Sep 11, 2009 11:19 pm

ambitious, I have not done it myself although I know several people who are doing it on a "lower" level just starting out and it's not that big a deal. Being an RIA is nothing at all like starting a BD or affiliating with one as an Indy rep. Don't let your apprehension over this minor aspect cause you to throw a percentage of production to someone who isn't giving you anything in return. Assuming the RIA isn't proving you any lead flow or other perks, I can't imagine they have any advantage to just doing it yourself. A lot of RIA's will be very strict on their investment style as well. Some sell off immediately before moving into their cookie cutter model portfolio. It's a bit more work to manage the funds yourself but that's nothing compared to bringing in the assets...