The highly anticipated podcast, named after the book “The Lawyer Millionaire”, has officially launched!
In this inaugural episode, get to know your host, Darren Wurz, MSFP, CFP®. He highlights what led to the start of his business and what made him so passionate about creating successful financial plans for professionals working in law firms. Along with some insight into what’s to come on his show.
- How Wurz Financial Services was created – this includes following in his dad’s footsteps of being a financial advisor in the family business
- How the majority of his clients turned out to be attorneys and how that reshaped his business entirely
- The importance of investing time into understanding your clients’ needs and not treating every client with the same advice
- How “The Lawyer Millionaire” is an extension of his business
- And more
Click here to subscribe on iTunes, Android, and your favorite podcast channel!
[00:00:00] We are on a mission to help the lawyers and law firm owners maximize wealth and achieve financial independence. Welcome to The Lawyer Millionaire with Darren Wurz, from Wurz Financial Services. In this podcast, we will help you build wealth, minimize your tax and plan for retirement with money management strategies, designed for the legal profession. Join us in this journey where we help you manage your money so you can make the most of your future. Start feeling confident in knowing you are well-prepared for retirement and on track to financial independence. Now onto the show.
Patrice: Welcome to the inaugural episode of The Lawyer Millionaire with host Darren Wurz and Darren may have written the book on financial planning for attorneys, and we will get into that. But this episode is all about him and how he found his way to the financial services business. I’m Patrice Sikora. All right, Darren, let’s go back to the beginning. Where did it all start?
Darren: It took a little bit of time for me to get into this business. It wasn’t my first choice right out of college. I actually studied education and biology in college and my first dream was to be a teacher. I actually was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, and went to Cedarville University. And after graduating, I got a job offer in Cincinnati, Ohio. So I came down here and I taught eighth and ninth grade science for five years. I quickly realized that that wasn’t the long term plan for me. I have a lot of respect for teachers. It is tough work, indeed.
But my dad had always kind of been tugging at me trying to get me into the family business, which is being a financial advisor. So he has been a financial advisor his whole life. His dream was really for me to come into the business with him and my younger brother, Travis. And so a couple of years into teaching, I started to really think more seriously about that. And I actually went back to school, got my master’s in financial planning and I was planning to stick around with teaching a little bit longer, but once I hit five years, I was vested in my retirement plan so I said peace out. And I decided just to come into the business. I actually kind of launched my own business. It’s part of the family business, but I’m down here in Cincinnati. Dad helped me find a new, a few clients to start. But a lot of it was just kind of building up my own client base. So that’s kind of how I came into this business.
Patrice: I must say they also respect teachers so much. I give you credit for that for five years, I really do, but, okay. So you’re in the financial business. So your dad is in Toledo?
Darren: That’s right. So Travis, my brother and my dad are up in Toledo, Ohio, and then I, my office is down here in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Patrice: Alright. And you said you started building up your own client base. So who do you work with?
Darren: So that’s kind of evolved over time. You know, initially it was anyone who needs me and has a dollar. I did a lot of networking, starting out my business. I was in the local business associations and doing a lot of that and just kind of meeting with people, building up my business. And I started to notice a lot of my clients were attorneys and it just kind of happened that way. I don’t know how it did. I think one of my early introductions was to a law firm where they were getting rid of their retirement plan.
And a lot of their attorneys were older and looking to retire soon. And so, they brought me in basically to talk with folks and help them get set up for retirement. So that kind of initiated the whole thing. And so a few years into the business, I decided, hey, you know, let’s, let’s make this more of a focus.
And so my focus now has really narrowed down to working with attorneys and law firm owners specifically.
Patrice: And you wrote a book?
Darren: I did. Yes. So yeah, you know, I was kind of in my pursuit of trying to develop my business, I was looking for things I could read, you know, books that I could read, that I could learn how to be better at working with attorneys. You know, what are the books that are out there on retirement planning and financial planning for attorneys? And I didn’t find anything. I mean, there were a couple of books out there, but they were old, they were kind of dated and they really didn’t have any specific advice for attorneys. So I decided, what the heck, why don’t I write the book?
Patrice: And what’s the title?
Darren: Well, the title is the same title as the podcast it’s called The Lawyer Millionaire. And, it should be out a little bit later this year. Actually, I did get a date for it–mid to end of June of this year. So I’m very excited about that. It’s coming out from the American Bar Association who is publishing it.
Patrice: Wow. Congratulations.
Darren: Thank you.
Patrice: Now that we’ve talked a little bit about the niche that you’re in, who is your ideal client though? Maybe an attorney, but a little bit more.
Darren: So real specifically, my ideal client is an attorney who owns their own practice or is part of a small practice and has maybe five to 10 years to retirement and is starting to think really seriously about how do I put my ducks in a row to figure out what I’m going to do with the business and to make sure I have enough money, and to really create a plan for that transition into retirement. I’ll give you an example. I have one client who owns a law practice in South Carolina and that’s exactly his position. He’s a few years away from retirement and he came to me trying to figure out, okay, what steps do I need to take in these next few years to really catch up and make sure that I am going to be able to retire and enjoy the rest of my life.
Patrice: Do you find you have to do a lot of education with these clients?
Darren: Yeah, absolutely. Well, yes and no. I mean, I think that attorneys often are very kind of DIY people. So they do a lot of reading themselves. They’re very knowledgeable. They’re very smart. They tend to read a lot of investment kind of stuff. But at the same time, they are looking for more and they’re interested in education, so they want to learn more. So we do some webinars. There’s one webinar that I do, that’s really popular. It’s really simply just retirement planning for attorneys. And we do a lot of CLE programs through the local bar association, the Northern Kentucky bar association. Our series is called Business for Breakfast. And we do one CLE program every couple of months. And that retirement planning for attorneys webinar is on demand and it is also CLE eligible in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. So yeah, we do a lot of educational things. You know, the CLE thing is really valuable. Attorneys are always looking for CLEs and if you can get free CLEs that’s even better.
Patrice: Right. Absolutely. How do you get new clients? Through these webinars?
Darren: Yeah. So the webinars have been a really big one and that was really instrumental during the pandemic. A lot of what I did was in person. So I really love doing in-person educational events and we were doing in person events before the pandemic, of course. And I think my background as a teacher really kind of lends itself to that. I really do enjoy..
Patrice: I can see that even now–I have a command of the language and I’m here speaking to you and I’m telling you…
Darren: I’ve had a lot of practice, you know, and yeah, so we were doing the in-person events and the pandemic hit, and I really just had to change the whole business model. And I realized that my geography is really not limited. So we started to do different webinars throughout the year, focused on general financial topics and topics more specific to attorneys. Like we’ve got one on tax minimization strategies for attorneys that’s real specific. And I just started marketing those and putting them out to anybody on social media and everything else and partnering with different folks–so partnering with bar associations, partnering with different organizations that work with attorneys, different professionals that work with attorneys. And low and behold on those webinars I’ve had clients across the country from New York to California. And then as a result, you know, attorneys will watch a webinar. And then if they want to learn more, they’ll schedule a consultation or a quick chat with me and then if they want to work together, you know, then that leads to. So that’s been probably the number one way and really I’m hoping that going forward, the book and the podcast will simply be a great marketing tool that will encourage people to call in. I really don’t do a lot of cold calling or anything like that. Attorneys are really good at guarding the door in terms of who can get in. So that really doesn’t work well.
Patrice: Speaking of guarding the door, how about your door? Tell me about the folks you work with. Who’s on your team?
Darren: Yeah, so really it’s it’s me, my brother, Travis, my dad, Richard. And then I also have a business partner here in Cincinnati, Mark Schmerge. And he is actually the owner of our RIA, our registered investment advisor that we work through. We all kind of have different silos, so I’m mostly a one man show, but we do coordinate together. So we use the same investment models and we talk with each other about investment strategies and things with our clients. We really count on each other a lot in terms of advice and working with our clients. But for my clients, you know, one of the nice things about working with me is they’re working with me. I’m the guy they’re going to. I do have an answering service, so I don’t make sure I don’t miss any phone calls, but if you call me, you’re calling me and you’re going to hear back from me specifically. So you’re not going to get passed off to somebody else. And I think people kind of like that. At a certain point, I may have to bring on somebody to help me a little bit. But that’s how it operates now. Dad has partly retired. He’s still working in the business a little bit, as a consultant, but he spends about half his time in Florida. Travis is a little bit unique. His specialty is in working with realtors, so he kind of has his own niche that he focuses on and he has developed.
Patrice: That is interesting–realtors and lawyers. Now you mentioned you have a master’s in financial plans. What other designations do you have?
Darren: I’m also a Certified Financial Planner, so I do have that designation and that’s pretty much it. The master’s I think is kind of unique because it’s not something you see a whole lot of. And I wanted to pursue that. That was my CFP education program. So it was kind of all tied together. And I did that through Golden Gate University. They were one of the first in the country to have that kind of program. So it’s really a unique thing to have. I think it sets me apart in having a little bit deeper knowledge and understanding. And I think that’s something that attorneys can appreciate. You know, attorneys are looking for an expert, someone who can understand some more sophisticated strategies that they might need help with and I can bring that knowledge to the table. The CFP is also is a really the gold standard among designations. There’s a lot of different designations out there, but the CFP is really one of the best.
Patrice: It’s certainly the one that everybody looks for I think. Do you have a business or an investment philosophy that you like or what is your philosophy?
Darren: Sure. There is a credo that dad has always said, and he says it comes from his mom and it’s simply this: people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care. And for us, you know, it’s really always been about doing the right thing by the clients. I’ve seen a lot in this industry. Folks that are just focused on running their business. And they don’t really go the extra mile in terms of making sure that the client is getting the very best advice and being put in the very best position. So it’s really about caring about the clients, making sure they know you care, being proactive, reaching out to them. Really staying on top of things and monitoring their, their financial plan. So that’s really what it’s all about.
Patrice: All right. When you’re not working, what do you do for fun?
Darren: Oh, there’s tons of things I do for fun. I do love to read, and the books I like to read are mysteries or thrillers. I was always a Sherlock Holmes, Agatha Christie fan. So I do a lot of that. I love the outdoors. I did mention that my dad spends half of his time in Florida. And so a lot of what I like to do for fun is go down there and hang out with him for a little bit, and my mom too, so mom goes down there too, but that is like, he’s focused on Florida. That’s his thing. So I love to go down and hang out with them in Florida sometimes. They have a little condo on the beach. It’s it’s nice and relaxing. And then travel’s a big one too. I love to travel. My husband, Chris, and I love to go to different places around the world. You know, we haven’t done a lot of that since the pandemic and we’ve been home for about a year and a half, two years now. Yeah. But that’s, that’s one of our goals–we really want to get out there and see different parts of the country and the world.
Patrice: Where do you think you’re going to go now?
Darren: Well, believe it or not I’ve never been to New York City. And so that’s really on the top of my list probably. And then we do want to go to Europe at some point–Paris and London. That would be really amazing. New York’s a little bit easier to accomplish, but those are definitely on my mind.
Patrice: Oh, listen. Everything is on sale in New York right now. They want you to come on out. Might be a great time.
Darren: Yeah, it might be now.
Patrice: Is there one thing most people don’t know about you?
Darren: Well, one thing that’s kind of unique about me is I am a violinist.
Patrice: Oh yeah? And so what’s that? When did you start studying?
Darren: I started playing the violin in sixth grade and I played throughout school. I kind of stopped playing in college. And then in my adult life started to get back into it as a hobby. So I actually do play with the Cincinnati Community Orchestra. And it’s an all volunteer group, but it’s a lot of fun just to continue to do that. And we actually have a concert coming up here next weekend. So getting ready for that, right now.
Patrice: Is there one thing you recommend most to clients and family and friends?
Darren: I think really one of the biggest keys to financial success is just to live a little bit below your means and make sure you’re saving, make sure you’re putting money away. I think that’s really the biggest thing of all. We can talk about IRAs, Roth, IRAs, blah, blah, blah, all of that, you know, but really the key is just to make sure that you’re putting money away and you’re living a little bit below your means. I think that’s really the key. It’s hard for people to do because we make a little bit more, we want to spend a little bit more, right? But if you can maintain that discipline, I think that’s really the biggest foundation for success.
Patrice: Well, with that in mind, if you had all the money in the world, what would you do?
Darren: Well, I think I would do a lot more travel. And I think I would still work a little bit tiny bit because you need something to do, you know, but I would really travel a lot. I think that’s something I really want to do. There’s so many places I haven’t seen yet that I really want to see. And one thing I would love to do a lot more of is ski. I used to ski. My family used to go on ski trips, mom, dad, and Travis. We used to go every year, take a week and go skiing. Really haven’t done a lot of that in many years. And so I would love to do a lot more skiing.
Darren: Downhill. Yeah, definitely. I’ve actually never been out west to ski, believe it or not. And that’s something I’d love to do–Colorado and all that.
Patrice: All right. What is your idea of success?
Darren: My idea of success, I call it financial freedom. Or another way of looking at it is a work optional lifestyle. We talk a lot about retirement and retirement is nice, but retirement kind of has some negative feelings about it. It’s kind of like, aging and, you know, giving up work. And for a lot of my clients their identity is really tied to what they do. They’re attorneys, they’re lawyers, that’s who they are, they bleed law, you know? And so it can be very difficult to plan for–at a certain age, I’m just going to walk away from all of it. So we talk a lot more about putting you in a position where you can walk away, not necessarily that you are going to, but to have the freedom and flexibility, to know that: hey, if I want to dial back a little bit, I can do that. If I want to get up and quit, I can do that. But that’s going to be my decision to make when I want to. I think my dad is really a great example of this because he still is involved in the business, but he’s living his best life down in Florida, riding his motorcycles, you know? And I think that that’s really true for him that his identity is really tied into this business because he’s been a financial advisor his whole life. It’s what he does. He watches the markets all day long. So that’s not going to change. But he loves how he’s positioned now. And I think that’s a great goal for attorneys and for anybody else to be able to be in a position where you can still do what you love to do but also have the freedom and flexibility to enjoy life a little bit more as well.
Patrice: I liked that. Now, Darren, what is your proudest achievement to date? Just to date.
Darren: To date, I really think it’s the book: The Lawyer Millionaire. That was something I just kind of started. Didn’t kind of know where it was going and it was kind of a pandemic project actually, because we were kind of quarantined at home and looking for things to do. And I thought that I was just going to self-publish it. I really didn’t expect that a prestigious organization, like the American Bar Association was going to want to publish it. And actually truth be told they turned me down the first time. I wrote them a proposal and they weren’t interested at first, but I decided to go ahead and write the manuscript anyway. And I was like, well, I can just self publish it. I finished the manuscript. I reached back out to them. I said, manuscript is done, you know, if you are interested and they actually were. And I was really kind of blown away by that. I think it’s really a blessing. I’m really blessed to be in this position, to be able to write a book like this and have them notice it and want to publish it. I’m really blessed to have achieved that, you know? And so that’s something I’m probably the most proud of right now. And I will be even more proud once it’s actually out and on bookshelves.
Patrice: I love it. Then I’ve got one other question for you, and then we’re going to talk about how people can get in touch with you, but do you have a, a mantra or a motto, something you say to yourself to stay focused and on track?
Darren: Uh, does coffee count?
Patrice: Yes. Oh gosh. Yes. Oh yes.
Darren: So I’m a big coffee drinker. But I think really a couple things that I do, you know, one is vision boarding. So vision boarding is where you think about what your goals are for the future. You maybe take pictures of those things and you put them up somewhere. I did that, you know, starting out this business, I really was like starting from a completely blank slate and trying to stay motivated. Here I am–a teacher who has no experience in networking or sales or any of that.
Darren: So I put pictures up of what I wanted to achieve. What I wanted my life to look like, you know, places I wanted to go, things to kind of inspire me and keep me motivated to keep going forward. The other thing that I do on a daily basis–and I don’t know where I learned this–but it was to do the hard things first. When you’re self-employed, it’s really hard to–you really have to motivate yourself and it can be hard to stay on track. You get to the office, you want to do those easy things first, because that’s the easiest thing to do. But while you have the energy, you have got to sit down and you gotta buckle down and do the hard things first. That was what I did with the book. You know, I started writing the book in the evenings. I’d have a glass of wine and write. But you don’t have energy for that every day. So I changed it up. I had to work on the book first thing every morning, first thing I did every morning. And actually I hit a spot in the middle of the year where I kind of stopped. My progress kind of slowed to a halt and I had to find the self-determination to pick it up again and keep moving forward. And the way I did that was just to have that discipline of doing that hardest, most thought intensive thing first.
Patrice: And having coffee.
Darren: And having lots of coffee.
Patrice: That’s a great, great thought though. Do the hard things first.
Darren: Absolutely, absolutely.
Patrice: The discipline you build with that. And especially as a, uh, a small business owner, you’re all by yourself. You’ve got to motivate yourself.
Darren: You really do. And it’s tough. So you have to find little tricks like that. I read a lot of books too. I read a lot of motivational books, business books, and I’ll listen to podcasts. So there you go. Listen to podcasts. And I’m hoping that the book, The Lawyer Millionaire will also be inspirational to others. So yeah, there’s a lot of practical advice in there, but more so, and I mentioned this in the introduction, which you can read when you buy the book is: hey, read it right away, but then put it on your desk or put it on your bookshelves where you can see it, where it can be something that can motivate you towards getting to those financial goals.
Patrice: I like that. I want a signed copy. Wait a minute now!
Darren: I’m going to send you one.
Patrice: All right. Now, Darren author of The Lawyer Millionaire the host of this podcast, how can listeners reach you?
Darren: Well, one of the easiest ways to reach me is simply to call my office at (859) 291-9879. If I don’t answer the phone, my receptionist will. And if I’m not available, they will schedule a time for you to chat with me. Or you can simply go to our website. And on our website, you’ll see a link to schedule a meeting. It can be a simple, quick phone call, 15 minute call. Or if you want to do something more in depth, you can schedule a little bit longer meeting. The website has all my contact information and there’s a link there that goes to my Calendly page. So you can see all my availability and you can schedule a meeting, right there.
Patrice: Outstanding. All right. This may be show number one, but don’t miss any of the upcoming shows of The Lawyer Millionaire. All you have to do is follow this podcast and share with others. You might impress them and let’s talk again later.
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