The Importance of Creating a Financial Plan (Especially Now) with Texas WealthWave
The Importance of Creating a Financial Plan (Especially Now) with Texas WealthWave
In this week’s episode, Texas WealthWave Senior Marketing Director Bryan Linder is here to discuss how his financial service company aims to help educate families and businesses in Frisco with financial management, and his advice for financial planning during the COVID-19 pandemic.
SHOW NOTES:[00:20] Introduction
[02:15] What makes Texas WealthWave different?
[04:00] Current events and current conversations
[06:37] What common questions are people are asking now?
[08:50] Available resources Texas WealthWave offers
[13:10] Bryan’s advice in the current climate
[15:00] How to get in touch with Texas WealthWave
LINKS & RESOURCES:
- Texas WealthWave on Lifestyle Frisco
- Texas WealthWave Website
- Texas WealthWave: Instagram | Facebook
- Bryan Linder: Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn
Connect with Lifestyle Frisco on:
Welcome to the Frisco Podcast I’m your host, Scott Ellis, and today we are hanging out with Bryan Linder from wealth wave. Bryan, welcome to the show.
Hey, thank you so much. I’m excited to talk to y’all.
Appreciate you taking the time to join us. I want to dig in and talk a little bit about what you guys do because I think people have known you for a couple of things around Frisco, but we really want them to understand what WealthWave is and what you guys do. And I think from that we’re going to spring forward into some, some current event conversation around that as well. But why don’t you start off by telling us a little bit about yourself and the story of WealthWave.
Yeah, I appreciate it. That’s good. Yeah. You know what happens is funny, whenever I go somewhere they’re like, Bryan, we see you all the time, but what do you really do for a living? What do you actually do? And so, you know, I, I do want to let people know, you know, I’ve been in the financial services industry, uh, 17 years. I’m going into my 18th year and I’ve owned and operated, uh, an independent agency of my own starting in ‘07. So the first part of that I was corporate and the rest of it, I’ve owned my own business, central Texas, and it’s grown to over 2000 agents across the United States at this point. But we just moved our headquarters to Frisco last in September. So we operate right there out of the Star, right in formation. And so we’re excited about expanding there. And so I guess to kind of wrap it up in a real quick nutshell, I mean, when you think of financial services, you think of companies like Merrill Lynch and Edward Jones and New York life and Fidelity and some of these bigger firms. And basically that’s what we do in one place. So we’re a brokerage within wealth way. We can represent about 300 different companies to help individuals, families, families, businesses, really with anything financial related between budgeting, debt management, college savings, retirement, estate planning, all those things. We do all that right there in Frisco.
I didn’t realize you guys were quite that big. 2000 agents?
Yes. Yeah, we, you know, we started with just a couple. We expanded across a course, a bulk of them. They’re in Texas, probably about 1200 here in Texas. The other 800 are spread out throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.
Okay, very good. So one of the first questions that comes to my mind is how is, how, how, what makes you different with respect to how working with um, you know, kind of mid middle tier clients rather than going to the really high end stuff. Like how does that, how is that different for people like us, for families and Frisco?
Yeah, that’s a great question. You know, my dad started in the industry back in 1979 he actually opened up out of his Purina feed store right there in downtown Austin where the convention center is now today. And back then, you know, he started the company in a, in a vision that a business could create, could be created in our industry where instead of the wealthy being served by these financial advising firms, that everybody, the normal person, the coach that he coached with, the people that he sold cattle feed to get access to that type of management. But for them and for their own households, even though they didn’t have 200 300 $500,000 to invest, all they had was maybe 50 bucks a month. And so fast forward now 40 years later. And that’s really what separates us from most of the big firms and wire houses is I talked to people on a daily basis that can save $10 a month, some of them, some of them $500 a month. And now some are very wealthy clients. Of course it runs the gambit. But where we have our strength is we can sit down for free with a client or a family and we get fully on in involvement in their financial household to deliver a strategy that doesn’t cost a dime for the information. And so I think that’s one of the benefits that we offer is I’ll, I’ll spend hours and hours developing a strategy and the client doesn’t have to pay me anything and I’m just there to provide that service and education.
All right, that’s good to know. So, and I think, you know, kind of spilling over into current events, probably good timing for a lot of people because there’s, there’s a lot of folks that I know are feeling a lot of financial uncertainty right now and it’s probably a more important time than ever for people to have a chance to sit down with somebody to chat about what’s happening right now, how their finances are and, and having a game plan, I would think to deal with that. Are you guys having conversations with people around everything that’s happening with the COVID-19 and the current pandemic?
Oh, 100% you know, for some reason, at the end of last year, I had this vision in my mind that to move my entire business practice virtual, so we still had our physical office and we still do meet physically with our trainees that were trained to become agents and our clients there in Frisco. But I wanted to try and do something where I could train from the office, but using Facebook Live and using Zoom. And so what’s interesting about that is we had all of our platforms in place starting January 1st so when this happened, we were ready to go already. And so I’m doing trainings and client appointments from my home and yes, I probably spent anywhere from five to 10 client appointments a day right here in my, in my living room answering that question. And the benefit that I kinda have is I, when I started, I started my business in 2002 so it was right after the 2001 turn and I went through 2007 as an agent and advisor. And then here we are, 2020 and I think a lot of, uh, new clients, I’ve never been through a downturn before. Some of us that are a little bit older. Sure. We saw 2007 we saw the recession, but some of the millennials, they have never seen a downmarket. It’s a 12 year old market. So they are panicking. There are a lot of questions and even those that are gen X or even boomers, you know, we’re in the worst spot because most of us haven’t saved enough. The boomers that are, we getting ready to retire now just saw 30% of their [inaudible] and just evaporate, which is what’s crazy. It was the fastest downturn. It was a three week drop. That’s never happened in the history of the stock market where it dropped that quickly and that much in that short of time. So yeah, panic has ensued and one of the things I challenged people on is you’re very emotional with your money, right? You know, when it comes to your money, it’s your money. And I get that. And that’s where I advise people, get an outsource outside coach that can help you work through those things because in your mind you panic, you want to sell, you don’t understand. It’s frustrating, but if you have someone there that’s cheering you on to help you understand it, you’ll generally will stick with it. Just like you have a physical trainer that says keep the diet going, keep pushing the weights, eventually it’ll work. The same thing happens with money and that’s where I think people like us really can add value.
So what are some of the more common questions you’re getting from people right now in the current climate?
I mean, right now it’s how can I stop the bleeding more? The flip side is what would you suggest I get into? Right? Because for most common investors, you really don’t have access to buying the market low, selling it high unless you have your own account that you’re trading in. And most people don’t have the financial education, the financial literacy to actually try it on their own. Or would I advise them to a thousand education and training. And so that’s where I get a lot of the questions. So my first answer to the ones that are scared is, listen, we’ve seen this before. You know, it’s a, it’s a different chapter in the same book, markets go down, markets come up, but when panic ensues, your reaction is to pull out of the market, park it at the bank, park it in a cash or money market account, which is fine at this point, you’ve already lost it, right? So doing that doesn’t really help you at this point. But the trick is now when you go back in, if you, if you waited this long and if you don’t know how to manage the markets and you don’t have an educational background, you may miss it. So what I saw happen in 2007 was clients panicking, pulling out, and then when the markets rebounded, they waited and waited and waited. And it was like 2012 2013 before they went back in the market. So they miss a very big upswing. And my opinion, this upswing coming after this is all settled down will be one of the fastest upswings you’ve ever seen in the market. Just like we saw it being one of the fastest downturns. So that’s where I say don’t panic. You know, if you have cash on the sidelines, this is a great opportunity to buy. It’s like all the jeans in the store right now are 30 to 40% off. Why won’t you go in and buy the jeans while they’re on sale? Except for these jeans are going to have become more, more valuable down the road, not less valuable. So those are the main things is what do I do? How do I protect it? And then unfortunately what I’m getting a lot of is I’m not hearing from anybody. Um, I have a four one K at work. I haven’t heard from my advisor. What can I do? Um, and so I would say reach out. There’s all kinds of people like me, I’m not saying I have the market cornered on, on financial advising. So retail, there’s all kinds of great professionals in Frisco that are there to answer your phone and give you some help. And so I would just reach out if you feel lost, just reach out to one of us and we’ll help.
Are there other resources that you guys have available, like even before somebody talks to you or picks up the phone to have a call or assume as what we’re doing today, is there, are there other resources that you guys have available that people can go to to start learning more about you and how you guys offer it?
Absolutely. You know, um, we have, there’s a couple of ones. The first one I challenged people to do is go to our website, texaswealthwave.com, um, and take a look at what’s on there. Um, on one of the screens on there focuses on the wealth wave division of our firm. And on that we actually do a series of client focused events. Like we just did one last Friday on the importance of longterm care, how it works, how to use it, how to add it to your financial strategy. On the next one coming up in the first week of April is how to eliminate your student loan. If you have a federal student loan, there are some no new rules on the books that you can maybe get that wiped out 100% wiped out. So we have a professional that gives them advice on that. We also have one mid April on understanding your 401k. So there’s all kinds of education events. You know what? We want to become education provider for financial services. We don’t want to sell you anything. We don’t want to have to be pushy about stuff. We just want the education of how money works out there as much as possible. Because I believe an educated consumer is a good consumer, right? They make good buying decisions no matter what they’re buying. And so the flip side is we also have a book, we call it, it’s the book called how many words stop being a sucker. So it was written to to help people understand just simple potential concepts that weren’t taught in schools, weren’t taught in college, like compounding interest, simple versus compound interest. Why you should start saving early. Um, the effects of losses on your accounts. Just concepts that we think people should know that just haven’t been taught to them. It’s an a book that takes maybe 45 minutes to read. If they’re interested in that, they just go to our websites and it’s a quick email. We’ll mail that to them for free right now during the Corona Virus. Um, if they’re stuck in quarantine, uh, we’ll ship them a book and they can read it and, and, and learn some things while they’re sitting there stuck at home.
That’s a very generous offer. I may take you up on that myself, but um, you know, one of the things that strikes me about what you’re describing is it’s definitely good for people to have opportunities to be educated, to understand better what’s happening. And yet I don’t want people to get the impression that even for a moment that that replaces someone like yourself that does what, what WealthWave does because there are so many financial tools and so many opportunities. You’ve mentioned, you know, some of the student loan things and probably SBA loans that are going to be part of the stimulus package and like things that, that those of us that aren’t in this on a day to day basis have almost no hope of understanding in depth. Cause you just can’t keep up with all of it and know what’s out there. And I’ve got to believe that that’s where working with somebody like you really, um, is a huge help to those of us that have other day jobs and other things that we have to focus on on a daily basis.
Oh, I would agree 100%. You know, I, I challenged people all the time to think, think this through with me. You know, look how far your cell phone has come since 2009 the, our video gaming has come since the Atari to virtual reality. You know, technology and, and, and time has changed. Every industry we’ve been in your car, your refrigerator. So it has affected financial products just the same. The hard part is you can’t see them touch and feel them. So no one really knows what’s going on. And since they don’t have the educational background, they don’t study it. So that’s where a person like me comes in. I mean, do I know how a carburetor works? No. Do I know what it is? Sure. Am I going to fix it? Absolutely not. I’m gonna leave that to a professional. Right? And I also equate it to two medical doctors. If you were going into a medical doctor and you go and say, man, my shoulder hurts. Can you just give me a shot from my shoulder? The doctor is going to say, well, wait a second, I need to examine all of you. It might be your knee that’s causing you shoulder problems. We need to fix your knee, not your shoulder. So if someone comes to me and says, Bryan, I need you to fix my 401k. I said, well, it might be your debt that’s causing the problem. It might be something else. I need to do a full review. And that’s where I think working with a professional comes into play is we’re gonna look at the whole aspect of your financial strategy. And see what’s, what’s the issue. And then our firm, luckily we represent 300 different carriers. So we can go find the best solution in my opinion for what that need might be.
That’s fantastic. So is there any, other than reaching out and talking to you guys and taking advantage of some of those resources, is there any other advice you would have for people right now in the current climate? Just taking into consideration what’s happening.
Yes. I would just be proven right. I mean, I’m a student of, of, of humanity, right? I’m a student of crises and joys and ups and downs. Don’t get too high with the highs. Don’t get too low with the lows. You know, I keep telling clients this too shall pass. Um, it’s tough and we have loved ones. And so while you’re, while you’re quarantined, what a great opportunity to pull out your finances, um, to look at what you’ve got. You may have life insurance, you may not know what it is or how it works. Pull it out. Have a discussion with your spouse if you’re married, let’s get, you know, people just don’t talk about the money. And since you’re siloed and stuck at home, what a great time to look that over and have discussions and estate planning and do we need this for our kids? I mean this for our grandkids. And start having those discussions first and start finding out what your questions are and then get a game plan. And I think a lot of people just don’t reflect on that. And so a lot of clients aren’t, you know, which is crazy to me. Will will hand me like six field envelopes and say, Hey, this is my 401k statement or my IRA statement. We don’t open them anymore cause we’re just scared to look at them. They stick their head in the sand. And I just hope that they’re gonna look up and retire at 60 or 65 so my thing is, you don’t need to understand it in detail, but what you do need to have is a working idea of what you want your money to do for you. Now I know you work as hard for your money as I do and I want it to work as hard for me as I worked for it. And so that’s what we want challenged people to do is start thinking what do you want your money to do? And if it’s savings, if it’s a new home, if it’s a car, if it’s debt, whatever it might be, then how do I reach out to someone and get an actual written game plan I had to make that come true. And the reason I say written is just like everything else in life, once you see it in your mind, you write it down and you put it into action, the odds of it happening go dramatically up versus just, Oh yeah, you know I need to get out of debt. And then you keep and you get $1,200 from the government, you’ll blow that again on something else that you don’t need. Right.
Xbox, I’ve been, I am for awhile. That’s really the solid advice as it is people who are thinking about this stuff now and wanting to reach out to you. First of all, what’s the best way for them to do that is they want to get in touch with you guys. They want to set something up. Where do they begin?
Again, you know, I would go to Texaswealthwave.com. You can write through there on almost every page you can contact us. And it also links over to our Facebook page, which we put a lot of articles on. I do a good job, I think of scrubbing all the news and trying to find the ones that are relevant to middle income families, moms, dads, divorced moms or dads, business owners. There’s all kinds of of of information out there. And it’s good that we kind of helped sift through that. So if you jump on our Facebook page, you can connect with us there. A lot of the community events we do. Um, you know, for instance, we were going to do a volleyball tournament here at the end of April to raise money for Frisco fast packs. Um, I’m not sure that will happen. Depends on what happens. And then we have a golf tournament, uh, in October in conjunction with NBCF um, and so that you can plug in there as well. And then just on there is my information, my cell phone I think is on there. And so one of the things I, I pride myself on is, um, just call me on my cell. I literally work, you know, from about 8:30 in the morning until one in the morning and just, I’m always available, you know, I’m a dad, I’m a, I’m, I’m, you know, I’m a business owner, so if you have a question I want to answer it. And so that’s what I would do. Just go to that page and that’s got all that info. Just reach out and we’ll, we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.
All right, that sounds good. Well, I’m going to encourage people not to call you at one o’clock in the morning. You know, you might go to bed a little earlier, once in a while, but I hope that you guys are doing well through all of this as well and pulling up this as we’re all kind of locked away in our homes. What kind of projects do you have going on that are keeping you busy outside of work?
Well, you know, between, you know, Bronwyn and myself, we have five kids so that that uh, is a little cumbersome. But you know, you finally, you joke about that. But my garage is literally packed full with just junk and so, you know, thank goodness it’ll give me some time to clean that out and put the finally put the Christmas decorations away and yeah, but that’s it. I’m not very handy. I don’t put up curtains. I don’t build stuff. So that’s all I got is clean up the garage.
Yeah. I’m kind of the same way. I clean up and organize things, but if something needs fixed or hung or whatever, that’s probably not my domain. But I do a little bit of that occasionally. Well, I’m glad you guys are holding up. Five is a lot. You got a full household, so wish you well. The sanity department there. And um, any other last thoughts you want to leave us with? Are we a sign off?
You know, the last thing I’ll touch on is we also are looking for advisors. So you know, one of the things that I don’t know people know about our industry, is it shrinking? The average age of an agent right now is 59 years old and we’re losing between six and 10,000 advisors every year. That’s including the life insurance industry. So right now in Texas there’s only about 35,000 licensed in the entire state of Texas. And so most of them are boomers and retiring out. So our industry is shrinking every year as the neutral. What we do is expanding. And so one of the things I spend a lot of my time on is training and bringing reps in from inside the industry, outside the industry. If you know anybody that’s ever wanted a career in financial services, they can work with us part time. Even see if it’s something that they want to do. We do all the trainings now virtually and then we’ll do them live again once we’re up and running. But we would love anybody that’s ever wanted to be in the industry to reach out and have a conversation if it makes sense to move forward with them. But we need people to help us because the need is only going to grow with the boomers hitting retirement, extras hitting, you know, their savings eight years and now millennials starting to get into the savings careers. We need more folks to help us out.
Well that’s a great opportunity. Yeah, we’ll definitely make sure we spread the word on that. And Bryan, again, love what you guys are doing. Love that. You’re, you know, you’re open to working with such a variety of people no matter what kind of stage they may be at financially. Um, in many cases I think it’s, you know, those that are still earlier on in that journey that probably benefit the most from getting, you know, set up and things set up properly and, and having a longer term game plan. So definitely want to encourage anybody that’s got questions, concerns, whether it’s finances in general or specific to, um, dealing with finances in the current pandemic. Um, guys, reach out. It’s Texaswealthwave.com. Uh, Bryan’s numbers on there so you can pick up the phone and call him if you want to. Please just try to do it during normal business hours. Um, and again, Bryan, thank you so much for joining us. We really appreciate it. And, uh, you know, good luck, uh, through all of this.
That’s right. Hey, I appreciate you. Thanks for your time, Scott. Man, we’ve had a great time ago.