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Starting out as Indy?

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May 16, 2008 3:31 pm

I originally thought that I would go what I would call the traditional route of starting out (mid-life career change) by siging on with EDJ, Merrill or another brokerage/wirehouse with the thought that this was the correct route to go due to the fact that I really think the training programs would be beneficial to me. That and the fact that they would offer a salary to get by on the first year or two.

Recently I approached a couple of successful financial advisors I had heard about through an acquaintance at an independent B/D. The potential for a mentor type relationship with an existing advisor at this particual B/D holds allure due to the fact that being completely independent is something I would probably contemplate down the line. What makes it potentially possible is that fact that my existing job is going away in the near future (yeah!) and I will be walking out with a severance package that pays me for almost a year.   Am I crazy to think about starting out in the business as an Indy? For anyone that has started in this channel can you tell me what it was like? Thanks.
May 16, 2008 5:33 pm

Ice, I appreciate the insight. 

  I would like to think that the AUM/fee based approach is the end game, but mix in commision based where appropriate. For me, having been involved in finance/investments but not the sales, my one concern is becoming a successful salesman. I believe that will not be an issue but it is something I will need to focus on. My network of initial prospects is something I am currently focusing on (small business owners; corproate execs).   Just curious...what type of client and services/products are you (mainly) reaching out to?   The severance package will help me greatly (stay at home wife for now, a couple of young kids) together with ample savings and, as you, only a small mortgage for debt.    Thanks again.
May 16, 2008 7:16 pm

Wow…you went above and beyond with your advice. Much to consider.

  I have spoken with both EDJ and Merrill, partly for the reasons you mention (i.e. training, salary). Thankfully we have always saved around 20% of our income over the last 20 years so financially we are in good shape. I think if I stayed in my current job two things would have happened: (a) I would have been able to retire in 7 years even though the kiddies would just be entering college and (b) I would have been so miserable that my wife would have been the only one around to enjoy the money.