Financial Planning

Looking for a Financial Advisor for Entrepreneurs

By  Brian Thorp

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Are you an entrepreneur? A financial advisor who specializes in serving entrepreneurs can help you make smarter money moves and free up more time to focus on growing your business.

You’ll likely find dozens of financial advisors in your community well-suited to help you reach your money goals with a personalized plan. But it may be more difficult to find a financial advisor who truly understands the unique financial planning needs and challenges you’re facing as an entrepreneur.

Fortunately, many financial advisors offer virtual services so you can meet online no matter where you (or they) live. This means you can choose to hire a financial advisor who lives hundreds of miles away if you decide their knowledge and experience working with entrepreneurs could help you achieve better outcomes.

👨‍💻 Smart Money Insights for Entrepreneurs

This page is organized into sections to help you quickly find the information you need and get answers to your questions:

  1. Q&A with Financial Advisors Specializing in Serving Entrepreneurs
  2. Get Answers to Your Questions About Financial Planning for Entrepreneurs
  3. Browse Related Articles

Get to Know:

Grant Bledsoe, CFP®, CFA, AIF® | ✅ Jenna VanLeeuwen, CFP®

– Financial Advisors Specializing in Serving Entrepreneurs –

Three Questions with Grant Bledsoe

We asked Sacramento-based financial advisor and small business specialist Grant Bledsoe to answer three questions of interest to entrepreneurs who want to learn the benefits of working with a financial advisor.

As the founder of Three Oaks Wealth, a fee-only registered investment advisory firm that serves clients nationwide, Grant knows firsthand what it takes to succeed as an entrepreneur and he applies this experience to help his business owner clients.

Q: What is one of the most common challenges you see among the entrepreneurs you work with when it comes to financial planning?

Grant: One of the most common challenges I see for entrepreneurs & business owners is cash flow.

How should your bank accounts be set up? How should you separate your business activities from your personal activities? How much cash should you keep in your business? How and when should you take distributions from your business? What about paying yourself? What about setting cash aside for estimated taxes?

These are all very real issues that every business owner faces, and are fundamental to any decent financial plan.

Q: In your role as a financial advisor, how do you help entrepreneurs overcome this challenge?

Grant: We go through an exercise to forecast clients’ monthly cash flow in both their business and their household.

Once we have an idea of what their operating expenses and other upcoming outlays are, we help our clients make sound decisions on how much cash to keep in the business and how much to take out.

We can then weigh that against their cash needs as a household, and start to make logical decisions about their emergency fund, retirement plan contributions, and other planning needs.

Get to Know Grant:

View Grant’s profile page on Wealthtender or visit his website to learn more.

For additional insights, subscribe to Grant’s Grow Money Business Podcast.

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Q: For entrepreneurs who are unsure whether or not they should hire a financial advisor, what would you suggest they consider to help them make a more informed and educated decision?

Grant: I’d suggest evaluating how much your time is worth. Everyone should be doing some form of financial planning, but I’m not a believer that every human being needs to hire a professional for help.

If you have the bandwidth to spend time digging into your portfolio, tax strategy, and cash flow, then you may not need to hire a professional.

But if you’d rather spend your time elsewhere, perhaps with your family or running your business, there’s huge value in hiring someone. The time saved is immense, and good advisors will add value many times worth their fee.

Three Questions with Jenna VanLeeuwen

Jenna VanLeeuwen is a financial planner for business owners based in Jersey City, New Jersey. As the owner of Aligning Wealth, Jenna helps her clients succeed, both at work and at home. We asked Jenna to answer a few questions about her experience working with entrepreneurs.

Q: A common pain point for many entrepreneurs is finding more time in the day to spend with their families. How do you help business owners create more balance between their work and personal lives?

Jenna: As a business owner, so much relies on you at work and at home. With so much to do, it can be hard to step back and realize that you have successfully scaled your business to the point where you don’t have to grind so hard. 

We look thoroughly at both your business and personal financial life to understand where you are and where you want to go.

In the business, we answer questions like: How profitable is your business? Is it growing? What’s your expected profit and your expected compensation?

On the personal side, it’s evaluating your progress towards goals like saving for retirement, saving for your kids’ college, or buying a home. Once we know where you are, we break it down into specific steps to get you to where you want to go.

I find clients are able to worry less and be more present with their families when they know they have a plan in place, and they are actively working towards their financial goals. 

The perspective gained during the planning process helps, but also, I’m able to help do the heavy lifting to help my clients reach their financial goals so they can make progress in less time. For business owners, it’s things like managing their investments, monitoring cash flow, and screening potential partners like accountants, bookkeepers, insurance agents, and estate planning attorneys

Once you understand where you are in the business and at home, and you have the appropriate financial team in place, it can be easier to create the balance. Not only have you created extra time in your day, you also know that you are on track for providing for your family and you can be present at the dinner table – without worrying about the future. 

Q: As an entrepreneur yourself, how does your own experience running a business benefit the business owner clients you serve?

Jenna: As a business owner myself, I have hands-on experience navigating the unique challenges of being a business owner. It’s one thing to advise others, and it’s another to live it.

I understand the variability of business income and how that impacts your bottom line in the business and at home. I’ve navigated things like setting up business accounts, being prepared for tax time, hiring employees, and more.

Beyond the technical expertise, I’ve also lived the emotional ups and downs of being a business owner. It feels great when you bring on a great new client. It hurts when an employee you rely on leaves. This shared perspective helps me better understand my clients, so I’m able to give better advice. 

Q: For business owners thinking about hiring you, what questions do you think they should ask to determine if you’re a good fit to work together? What questions do you like to ask them in an introductory call to help you determine if you’re a good fit to work together?

Jenna: There are several things that I think a business owner should ask when hiring a financial planner. 

First, the basics. 

Are they fee-only? Do they work on behalf of a company that incentivizes them to sell particular products, or are they agnostic to all products and solutions?

Does the fee structure work for them? Business owners often have a lot of their net worth tied up in the business. Is the fee structured in such a way that they can pay out of cash flow or their available investments, and does it make sense for them? 

Do they like the financial planner and the proposed process for financial planning? Money is deeply personal, so you should feel comfortable with the person you’ll be working with.

Beyond that, I do think it’s important to find an advisor that works with other business owners like you. Maybe they tend to work with solopreneurs, service-based businesses, or other small businesses in your area. 

I would clarify how deep into discussing the business they are willing to go. A financial advisor isn’t a business coach, but they need to understand your business finances. They need to understand and be willing to discuss things like revenue, profit, and expenses.

You also want someone to proactively help you plan for business transitions that impact your bottom line like hiring new employees, scaling rapidly, or selling your business. These transitions are an important part of building and maintaining your wealth as a business owner, and you want someone who can walk beside you and guide you appropriately.

🙋‍♀️ Have Financial Planning Questions as an Entrepreneur?

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About the Author
Brian Thorp, Founder and CEO of Wealthtender profile picture

Brian Thorp

Founder and CEO, Wealthtender

Brian and his wife live in Texas, enjoying the diversity of Houston and the vibrancy of Austin.

With over 25 years in the financial services industry, Brian is applying his experience and passion at Wealthtender to help more people enjoy life with less money stress.

Connect with Brian on LinkedIn

Disclaimer: To make Wealthtender free for our readers, we earn money from advertisers, including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured. This creates a natural conflict of interest when we favor their promotion over others. Wealthtender is not a client of these financial services providers. Learn how we operate with integrity to earn your trust.