Indy

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ezmoney's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-30

I've looked at the numbers LPL has given me based on my business. It doesn't look all that good. After paying my assistant 24k/yr salary along with an additional 50k in operating expenses and cost of revenue of another 50k going to LPL based on 205k gross revenue. I'm looking at a 41% net payout to me.
I may as well continue working for someone at that payout. Indy doesn't  make sense unless you're grossing well over $350k.

ezmoney's picture
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Ownership Value - Your Private Practice as an LPL Financial Advisor
Office Cost and Profitability Projections
Office characteristics: Revenue composition:
Advisor revenue $ 205,021 SAM I 0%
Annual new client asset growth rate goal 5% - 15% SAM II revenue 48%
# of advisors sharing office costs 1 Advisor Select revenue 0%
Full-time assistants in office 0 General securities revenue 14%
Part-time assistants in office 0 Mutual Fund, VA, and all other revenue 38%
Office location Metro suburban 100%
Annual
Performance % of revs
Gross revenues: $ 205,021
Costs of revenues:
LPL commissions and administrative fees 3 3,207 16.2%
Ticket charges 1 0,042 4.9%
Industry-wide advisor costs (NASD, SIPC, etc.) 1 ,116 0.5%
LPL contract/E&O/tech/costs 6 ,565 3.2%
Offsets:
Production bonuses ( 1,050) -0.5%
Total costs of revenues 4 9,879 24.3%
Net payout 1 55,142 75.7%
Cash operating expenses per advisor:
Total compensation and benefit costs (excluding owner comp) 1 4,000 6.8%
Total occupancy and facilities costs 1 6,650 8.1%
Total equipment & supplies costs 3 ,300 1.6%
Total marketing costs: 4 ,100 2.0%
Total printing, reproduction & postage costs: 2 ,460 1.2%
Total communications costs: 5 ,880 2.9%
Total miscellaneous costs: 3 ,700 1.8%
Total cash operating expenses per advisor 50,091 24.4%
Operating cash flow  105,051 51.2%
Your Projected LPL Office Model office assumption notes
Determined by product mix. Mutual fund and other non-individual securities revenues generally have the least associated
cost, followed by advisory revenues, SAM II revenues and, lastly, general securities revenues.
Determined by product mix. General securities, SAM II accounts, certain mutual funds, and some other transactions carry
ticket charges. Advisory accounts (other than SAM II), variable annuities, and certain other transactions carry no ticket
charge.
Assumes subscription to the following LPL technology platforms: BranchNet, Portfolio Manager, Portfolio Review Too
(PRT), Representative website.
Significant assumptions include: For each advisor: $8,000 for health insurance. For all personnel: payroll taxes of 8.0% of
wages including owner's salary estimated at $75,000.
Assumes 900 square feet leased at a total cost of $18.50/sq ft for office space. Pricing includes cost of utilities and repairs.
Assumes fixed costs of $800/office for miscellaneous equipment and repairs, and variable cost of $2,500/advisor for office
supplies, stationery, and software.
Assumes marketing costs of 1% of revenue for offices with <5% annual new client growth rate goal, 2% of revenues for 5-
15% new client growth goal, and 3% of revenues for >15% new client growth goal.
Assumes consistent variable costs of 1.2% of office revenues.
Assumptions include: 3 phone & fax lines costing $1,500/advisor for local and long distance calling, $600/advisor for cell
phones, Internet costs of$1,980/year for business-grade DSL and $1,800/year per advisor for stock quotes.
Assumes fixed costs of $3,700 per office as follows: $1,000 for accounting, $500 for IT consulting, $200 for bank service
charges, $750 for misc insurance, $750 for misc taxes, $500 for dues and subscriptions.
6

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

You're forgetting  a couple key factors-Presuming you'll grow the business, your payout will increase substantially.Remember, you OWN the business in addition to that net payout.You have the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want, within the bounds of ethics and legality.  No more sales manager or Branch Manager looking over your shoulder.
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joedabrkr wrote:You're forgetting  a couple key factors-Presuming you'll grow the business, your payout will increase substantially.Remember, you OWN the business in addition to that net payout.You have the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want, within the bounds of ethics and legality.  No more sales manager or Branch Manager looking over your shoulder.

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That is a theme of yours Joeboy--what problems did you have with working for a branch manager?

ezmoney's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-30

You're expenses will grow as well. i.e additional staff, benefits, LPL revenue costs. 41% is not that much higher than the 35% i'm currently getting. That to will grow as my gross grows.
It's a lot of risk for only an additional 6% payout. Again, one better be able to consistently gross 350k/yr or there are going to be some major challenges.

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ezmoney wrote:
You're expenses

Does that look correct to you?

NASD Newbie's picture
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The most logical question to be asked is why virtually no "big hitters" at the wirehouses leave the wirehouses?
It's the second tier and lower producers that run away for the accelerated payouts.
Why not just make a career out of moving from wirehouse to wirehouse every several years--accept a huge up front package--do business for a few years and then move on for another huge up front bonus?

hubbabubba's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-03

newbie, one answer to moving about involves the headache of transferring accounts each time.  What do your clients think about a rep who jumps firms every so often?  I think most investors would prefer some sort of stability.
I know many independents (rjfs and lpl, for instance) as well as RIAs who were successful wirehouse brokers.  I think its simply personal preference and perhaps even the type of business that the rep builds that would determine the course of action to take. I think its faulty thinking to think to believe that reps who can't really hack the wirehouse setting are the only ones jumping ship. I've seen more CFAs/PhDs in finance on the RIA side than the wirehouse side.  I think these reps feel the wirehouses restrict their investment philosophy. For them, affiliating with a wirehouse creates a potential conflict of interest on many levels. So, I would make such general claims about who jumps ship and who stays.  To each his (or her) own.

Philo Kvetch's picture
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NASD Newbie wrote:
The most logical question to be asked is why virtually no "big hitters" at the wirehouses leave the wirehouses?
It's the second tier and lower producers that run away for the accelerated payouts.
Why not just make a career out of moving from wirehouse to wirehouse every several years--accept a huge up front package--do business for a few years and then move on for another huge up front bonus?

Incorrect, as usual Putsy.  Large-to-mega producers leave to go indy or form their own B/Ds regularly.  There aren't as many of these producers, so the number seem small to someone like you.  I'd hazard a guess that huge producers leave regionals and wires at the same percentage rate as producers at any other level. 

Indyone's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-31

EZ, that's probably pretty accurate depending on your product mix and expenses, although I'm on pace to net in the high 60's because of my low expense profile (sharing space with a group of accountants and having a part-time assistant).  I agree that you should not move until you are at about $350K...that's pretty much where I left, and that's about the right level to really make a difference financially.  Bottom line is, all I cared about financially was making about the same money...what was really important to me was being free from bank management.
You're not there yet...bide your time and prepare, prepare, prepare.  Read Robert Fragasso's book on running an independent practice.Once you're five years out and around $300-$350K, you can revisit the move...

Indyone's picture
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...and you're killing yourself by doing all SAM II instead of SAM I.  Less than 5% of my SAM accounts are SAM II.

Rugby's picture
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Indyone wrote:
EZ, that's probably pretty accurate depending on your product mix and expenses, although I'm on pace to net in the high 60's because of my low expense profile (sharing space with a group of accountants and having a part-time assistant).  I agree that you should not move until you are at about $350K...that's pretty much where I left, and that's about the right level to really make a difference financially.  Bottom line is, all I cared about financially was making about the same money...what was really important to me was being free from bank management.
You're not there yet...bide your time and prepare, prepare, prepare.  Read Robert Fragasso's book on running an independent practice.Once you're five years out and around $300-$350K, you can revisit the move...

Indyone-
I guess it depends where you came from.  I assume Bank Channel payout versus Wirehouse payout is much lower.  If the payout on  is approx. 35% in wirehouse around 350k gross production,  Why wouldn't everyone be jumping to Indy for 60% ish net payout? 
If you're at $150-$200K gross right now....in a wirehouse you'd be barely surviving at 35%.  Am i missing something?  Beyond the name recognition and office space (desk), that you need to factor in on top of that 35% payout at a wirehouse?
(i.e.-  Health Insurance; 401K, stock) etc.  I am asking about the big 3- ML, UBS, SB....
Thanks
   

Indyone's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-31

I'm speaking from the outside as to the wirehouse, but my understanding is that the payout is generally a bit higher than banks, more like 40% with some bonuses for hitting certain production levels.  Banks justify paying a bit less by saying that prospecting is much easier (which it probably is), although in my bank experience, you have to weed through a lot of crappy referrals to find a few gems.  I felt like my own prospecting efforts were much more productive.  Incidentally, my old bank now pays 40% for $350K production level...too little too late for me.
On barely surviving at 35% of 150-200K, I know lots of people that live on less, so everything is relative, I guess.
As far as why not everyone jumps, the reasons are many.  Some don't want the hassle of having to run a business while they are trying to take care of their clients.  Some stay for the benefits that you referenced (healthcare, 401(K), etc.), some stay because, like EZ, they don't see much difference in payout for the hassle in their particular situation.  Some stay because they don't see competing platforms as compatible (or comparable) to/with their business.  Some simply fear the unknown and are unwilling to take the risk of stepping out without a net.
For me, the decision was made easy by my complete disgust with management and how reps in our system were being systematically screwed and forced to put the bank's interest ahead of the client's.  It was only after I and several others left that management made some positive changes for the reps, but for the most part, it's still the same sh*thole I left and if anything, the suckers that stayed are more miserable than ever.

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

NASD Newbie wrote:joedabrkr wrote:You're forgetting  a couple key factors-Presuming you'll grow the business, your payout will increase substantially.Remember, you OWN the business in addition to that net payout.You have the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want, within the bounds of ethics and legality.  No more sales manager or Branch Manager looking over your shoulder.
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That is a theme of yours Joeboy--what problems did you have with working for a branch manager?Hmmm...where should I start...how about how much it cost me for absolutely NOTHING useful in terms of help for my business! 
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doubleb's picture
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Joined: 2005-05-29

ez, i was looking at your numbers (in between poker hands) and i think you made a miscalculation. based on the lpl numbers, if you increase the total compensation and benefit costs from 14,000 to 24,000 your net operating cash flow shrinks by 5% not 10%. so you would actually be netting 46.2%.

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joedabrkr wrote: NASD Newbie wrote:
That is a theme of yours Joeboy--what problems did you have with working for a branch manager?
Hmmm...where should I start...how about how much it cost me for absolutely NOTHING useful in terms of help for my business! 
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What would be an example of help that was requested, but denied?
 

ezmoney's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-30

Actually the 24k admin salary is on top of the stated 50k op expenses. If you look closely you'll notice that op expenses does not include pay for admin help. That changes op expenses to about 75k rounded up, and hence the 41% payout I had noted. Now if you could manage to keep op expenses at 50k including admin pay than I'm netting the 51%. Not as good a payout as I though I'd be making indy.
I'll note that my payout at the bank is a paultry 31%. I add back 4% fort the pension they pay me based on my ernings. I am on the grid so the more I gross the better the payout up to about 44%

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doubleb wrote:ez, i was looking at your numbers (in between poker hands) and i think you made a miscalculation. based on the lpl numbers, if you increase the total compensation and benefit costs from 14,000 to 24,000 your net operating cash flow shrinks by 5% not 10%. so you would actually be netting 46.2%.
Does that appear to have been written by an individual with an IQ in excess of 85 or 90?

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A question regarding what an indy broker pays his help.
Do you pick up the tab for matching FICA?  How about medical coverage?  Group life?  Other benefits?
When you're tossing around the number $24,000 is that the assistant's base salary, or the total cost?
How can you hire somebody with any degree of proficency at a wage like that?
Are you indy types saying that Susie the CA at the Merrill branch on Main Street is going to leave the safety of "Mother Merrill" for the unknown of "Acme Securities and Limousine Service----Offering Securities through LPL Financial Services" for the generous sum of $500 per week, before withholdings.
Why it sounds like a smart girl's dream job.

Indyone's picture
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Well, there's a couple of ways you work around those problems.  (1) Share a good assistant or hire one part-time.  At 205K it's doubtful you need a full-time assistant. (2) Hire an assistant who can get healthcare coverage through a spouse's job.
The other issues such as retirement and FICA aren't a big deal to cover...just a cost of doing business.
I had no problem convincing my assistant to make the jump.

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Indyone wrote:
I had no problem convincing my assistant to make the jump.

Suppose she stays with you for decades.  Will you be able to provide her with a retirement package equal to, or better than, what she would have received with similar service to a "real employer?"

Indyone's picture
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Yes.  I'm not greedy...I share with those who help me.  Right out of the gate, I'm in line with what she had.  We had no define benefit plan at brand X.

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Indyone wrote:
Yes.  I'm not greedy...I share with those who help me.  Right out of the gate, I'm in line with what she had.  We had no define benefit plan at brand X.

What do you mean by greedy, what is greed?
You're offering her a defined benefit plan?  You'll continually fund it until she dies?

Rugby's picture
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Ok-  For comparison (Indy versus Wirehouse) we can compare the specifics of the following circumstances:
A Rep works for Merrill and has 300K Annual Gross.  What is the approx. take home?  He has been in business for 4 years. 
If he had the same Gross and AUM at LPL what would he approximately make?
From afar you look at the payout difference and its large...40% to 90%.  We know some of the things that reduce LPL net.  Office space, assistant, platform fees, insurance etc. 
What makes the most sense?  What increases the Merrill net payout?  It seems there is alot of LPL reps who reduce their expenses by working from home, without assistant etc...
 
 
 

ezmoney's picture
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you dumb sh!it it's 40% to 90% net! After expenses it's more like 40% wire to 50% indy. Not really worht it if you can't consistently gross 400k per year.

ezmoney's picture
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excuse me, I'm a dumb ass also. I mean 40% net to 90% gross not apples to apples. Look at my numbers. It doesn't make much sence to go indy unless like I said you're grossing consistently more than 350k. Be wary of what the LPL recruiters tell you. Have them run the numbers like they did for me. Not so compelling, even at 300k which is where I'm at now with the bank. I doubt I'll do 300k as a no name financial serivec firm for several years. Bottom line is be careful before you make that so called great leap to indy.

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Does sence look right to you?

doubleb's picture
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wow newbie, why the slam? i have owned a couple of business so i know how to read a p & l. i was just pointing out to our friend that based upon the numbers lpl gave him, if he increased his expenses 10k, his net falls 5% not 10.

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Does this mean that doubleb is another name used by ezmoney?
Why would you write an entire paragraph without capitalizing anything that should be capitalized?

bankrep1's picture
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Maybe he didn't feel like using his pinky to hit SHIFT, maybe he doesn't have a pinky.

You're awfully judgemental of people who have mediocre grammar. You should be more careful with your own.

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bankrep1 wrote:Maybe he didn't feel like using his pinky to hit SHIFT, maybe he doesn't have a pinky. You're awfully judgemental of people who have mediocre grammar. You should be more careful with your own.
If sombody is missing their little finger wouldn't they have trouble typing anything with the letter "A" in it?

bankrep1's picture
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I don't know I have all mine

ezmoney's picture
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newbie are you a reg. rep.? answer is no. so go away.

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ezmoney wrote:newbie are you a reg. rep.? answer is no. so go away.
Sure I am, I have a Series 7 license.

Philo Kvetch's picture
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NASD Newbie wrote:
ezmoney wrote:newbie are you a reg. rep.? answer is no. so go away.
Sure I am, I have a Series 7 license.

I doubt it.

anonymous's picture
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NASD, since you are so quick to correct everyone else....
Having a series 7 license or a series 6 is only part of what makes one fit the definition of a registered rep.   If one can't sell securities through a B/D, that person is not a registered rep despite being properly licensed.

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NASD Newbie was one of those "indispensable" middle managers that was let go during the brokerage pogroms a few years ago.  Hence, his bitterness and envy of those who are still working and thriving in our industry.

troll's picture
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NASD Newbie wrote:ezmoney wrote:newbie are you a reg. rep.? answer is no. so go away.
Sure I am, I have a Series 7 license.You can only have a series 7 license if you are affiliated with a b/d.  Since you are currently unemployed, you do not have a series 7.  You have two years from the date of your last employment with a b/d to reinstate your license without testing.  Unless, of course, you're "parking" your license somewhere, but you already know that's illegal, right? 
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troll's picture
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ezmoney wrote:excuse me, I'm a dumb ass also. I mean 40% net to 90% gross not apples to apples. Look at my numbers. It doesn't make much sence to go indy unless like I said you're grossing consistently more than 350k. Be wary of what the LPL recruiters tell you. Have them run the numbers like they did for me. Not so compelling, even at 300k which is where I'm at now with the bank. I doubt I'll do 300k as a no name financial serivec firm for several years. Bottom line is be careful before you make that so called great leap to indy.Then stay at the bank and stop whining.  Those of us who have made the leap did it for reasons beyond merely money, although the bucks are nice.  
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doubleb's picture
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newbie is 60ish,twice divorced with grown kids who won't speak to him. he has a massive inferiority complex which manifests itself in his constant need to feel superior. that's why he nitpicks over such things as punctuation. the problem is, his nitpicking nonsense gets in the way of a legitimate discussion. ignore him.

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joedabrkr wrote: NASD Newbie wrote:
ezmoney wrote:newbie are you a reg. rep.? answer is no. so go away.
Sure I am, I have a Series 7 license.
You can only have a series 7 license if you are affiliated with a b/d.  Since you are currently unemployed, you do not have a series 7.  You have two years from the date of your last employment with a b/d to reinstate your license without testing.  Unless, of course, you're "parking" your license somewhere, but you already know that's illegal, right? 
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Are you sure I'm not an LPL rep who is running a few accounts?
Perhaps I'm a member of a team at Smith Barney who is collecting trails on my family's accounts?
The reality is that you're not sure if I am currently active or not.

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doubleb wrote:newbie is 60ish,twice divorced with grown kids who won't speak to him. he has a massive inferiority complex which manifests itself in his constant need to feel superior. that's why he nitpicks over such things as punctuation. the problem is, his nitpicking nonsense gets in the way of a legitimate discussion. ignore him.
Is it still a complex when the subject (Newbie, in this case) actually IS inferior?

troll's picture
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NASD Newbie wrote:joedabrkr wrote: NASD Newbie wrote:
ezmoney wrote:newbie are you a reg. rep.? answer is no. so go away.
Sure I am, I have a Series 7 license.
You can only have a series 7 license if you are affiliated with a b/d.  Since you are currently unemployed, you do not have a series 7.  You have two years from the date of your last employment with a b/d to reinstate your license without testing.  Unless, of course, you're "parking" your license somewhere, but you already know that's illegal, right? 
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Are you sure I'm not an LPL rep who is running a few accounts?
Perhaps I'm a member of a team at Smith Barney who is collecting trails on my family's accounts?
The reality is that you're not sure if I am currently active or not.True.  I had been operating under the assumption that you were telling the truth, though would not rely on that assumption when it came to anything of import to my business. 
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bankfa10's picture
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Joined: 2006-02-21

I am thinking of going to LPL. My production was 275k last year. I have about 100k in trial rev. I am thinking of joining a office and split the expenses. My payout at my firm is 25 - 28% sometimes 31%. 6% less on trail rev. (firm may give it back as bonus at year end) I take home around 60- 80 k depending on the year. Book is around 30 MM. I just want to make the same or more the first year. Am i ready to go Indy?

troll's picture
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bankfa10 wrote:I am thinking of going to LPL. My production was 275k last year. I have about 100k in trial rev. I am thinking of joining a office and split the expenses. My payout at my firm is 25 - 28% sometimes 31%. 6% less on trail rev. (firm may give it back as bonus at year end) I take home around 60- 80 k depending on the year. Book is around 30 MM. I just want to make the same or more the first year. Am i ready to go Indy?Obviously part of the decision depends upon the specifics of the office you'd join.At those payouts, however, it is highly unlikely you would make less at LPL.  Presuming, of course, you can take a decent sized portion of your book along.It's hard work getting started, but oh sooo worth it!

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