In my mid 20's and starting a RIA Firm

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Aug 26, 2011 2:57 pm

Dear All:

I have been following this forum for many years and find it extremely useful (only complaint is topics get off subject very quickly lol).

I am in my mid 20's and last night made a decision that could very well change the course for the rest of my life; I have decided to start my own RIA.

I plan on beginning to study for the 65 Monday (as well at the same time will be studying for my Real Estate license, just to have it handy).  I am Series 7 licensed so I have covered the majority of the topics found on the 65 and think I'll be ready for 65 in a month.

In summer of 2007 I did an internship at Citicorp Investment Services and in 2010 worked at an independent as a Financial Advisor Sales Associate and later joined a team of fixed income emerging markets traitors, which I enjoyed very much.

In October of 2010 I left the independent to start my own business (has nothing to do with this industry), but I really just wanted to own my own business.  Nevertheless, as life would have it, I am back.  I plan on starting the RIA on my own with no real sales experience and obviously no AUM.  Nevertheless, I have the support of a close family member of mine who’s been in the business for over 30 years.

I plan on having my own office to run the RIA.

Taking 65, writing business plan, and setting up RIA= have business up and running in roughly 2.5 months (approximate start date Nov. 15).

I will be reporting to keep you all updated on my progress.

I wish you all the very best.

Yours Truly,


Sep 1, 2011 5:39 pm

Day 4 of straight studying! one of those days where you need some motivation!

M U S T K E E P G O I N G !

best to all,


Sep 1, 2011 11:04 pm
Are you in your mid 20s?

Dude, nobody cares about your age; what are you looking for on here, a big congratulations? From the sound of your post, you are young and naive about this business and have no idea how much it is going to kick you in the ass. The studying part is the easiest part…by far. No real sales experience…no aum…good luck to you, but you better go bust your ass for the next 3 years, THEN come on here and post about your ria.

Sep 10, 2011 12:59 pm

Totally agree with Clarence. I think you’re making a huge mistake. I’m in mid 20s, and I’m trying to get my career going. It’s hard enough when you have a solid company name behind you. It’s impossible to start your own RIA with how much experience you and I both have. Your chances of success are somewhere between 0-1%. Not trying to be rude, but I think if you’re going to invest a significant amount of your own $$$ or take a loan to get your RIA started, you should get someone to shoot you straight. I’m willing to be you don’t have a clue about compliance, prospecting, audits, actually running a business (marketing, management, cash flow, etc). Dude, do yourself a favor, get your 65, get on with an established company. Put in the sweat equity for 5+ years. See where you’re at. If you feel confident, awesome, now you can start planning your RIA strategy.

Do you really think a wealthy 60 year business owner is going to walk into your office, see that its you and no one else, and feel confident that you can guide him through retirement for 35 years? Put yourself in his shoes for a sec. Don’t get me wrong, we are in the same boat. Young, idealistic, dreams bigger then ever, confident. But we also have to learn to be patient and understand how Valuable experience is in this career (and SOME of that is just perception by the client). This business DOES NOT happen overnight like we want. You have to BUILD it. That is so hard when we feel capable right now, but that is my experience so far.

Oct 17, 2011 9:54 pm
any update?
Dec 21, 2011 11:52 am

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Dec 22, 2011 6:04 pm

You need to get some significant experience somewhere before going pure RIA in my opinion.  You will find the vast majority of the most successfull and largest RIA's started at major wires, regionals, or spent a lot of time at boutiques before branching out on there own.  The least amount started Indy and eventually reached a point where they had such large amounts of fee base business it made sense to go RIA.  Forget the costs of running a business and getting clients you are going to need a minimum of 5 years living expenses because that's how long it will take you to develop relationships, build a client base, and actually understand the business by yourself. Realistically you would be much better off finding an established RIA or Indy office affiliate with and learn the business before you make the jump on your own.  Unless you have 50 million in assets you are going to manage in year one be prepared for a lot of hard work and a long time of ZERO income.