Darren Wurz: Financial Secrets for Law Firm Owners

In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Darren Wurz discuss:

  • Learning skills outside of just the law.
  • Niche down to stand out in the crowd.
  • Top struggles lawyers have around money.
  • Making the changes that will make the biggest difference in the future.

Key Takeaways:

  • Awareness of your money is the first step. You have to know where it is going in order to understand what is happening.
  • In a law firm, money is often fluctuating. Understanding your cash flow is key to understanding your overall financial situation.
  • You have to know where you are going with an inspiring vision in order to know how much you need to save to get there. Few people are inspired by saving money.
  • You want to make your financial plans somewhat realistic. If you’re in a situation that is completely unsustainable (maybe due to lifestyle creep) you may have to make dramatic changes to get back to your goals.

“It’s tough to build a business. It is tough to launch out on your own. But the cool thing about it is if you put in the hard work and determination, if you learn the skills you need to learn, you can build the business that you want.” —  Darren Wurz

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About Darren Wurz: Darren Wurz is a respected authority on retirement planning for law firm owners, as well as a published author and dynamic public speaker. As an experienced financial planner, Darren specializes in helping law firm owners more effectively manage their personal finances and investments, and plan for retirement and succession. He is the author of *[The Lawyer Millionaire: The Complete Guide for Attorneys on Maximizing Wealth, Minimizing Taxes, and Retiring with Confidence](https://www.americanbar.org/products/inv/book/423608863/)*, published by the American Bar Association. He is also the host of The Lawyer Millionaire Podcast. Darren has been featured on radio, television, podcasts, and as a guest speaker at bar associations, law firms, and legal organizations across the country.

After a brief career in education, Darren joined his dad and brother as a fee-only financial advisor and co-owner of Wurz Financial Services. As a small business owner himself, he understands the challenges law firm owners face. Over the past 8 years, Darren has developed an expertise in helping law firm owners master their money and achieve financial independence through his unique financial planning process for law firm owners—The Lawyer Millionaire Method. Darren holds a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER designation and earned his master’s degree in financial planning from Golden Gate University. Darren is a member of the American Bar Association and the Financial Planning Association. He currently works and resides in the Toledo, OH, area but works remotely with clients in all 50 states. To learn more about Darren and his work, please visit TheLawyerMillionaire.com or connect with him on LinkedIn.

Connect with Darren Wurz:  

Website: https://wurzfinancialservices.com/

Book: https://wurzfinancialservices.com/the-lawyer-millionaire-the-book/

Podcast: https://wurzfinancialservices.com/category/podcasts/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/darren-p-wurz/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/wurzfinancial

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thelawyermillionaire

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thelawyermillionaire/

Connect with Steve Fretzin:

LinkedIn: Steve Fretzin

Twitter: @stevefretzin

Instagram: @fretzinsteve

Facebook: Fretzin, Inc.

Website: Fretzin.com

Email: Steve@Fretzin.com

Book: Legal Business Development Isn’t Rocket Science and more!

YouTube: Steve Fretzin

Call Steve directly at 847-602-6911

Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie

Audio production by Turnkey Podcast Productions. You’re the expert. Your podcast will prove it.


[00:00:00] Steve Fretzin: Hey everybody before we get to the show just want to mention we have a be that lawyer live tech talk Coming up on the 31st of august. I’d love for you to be there. Um, you can sign up by going to Fretzin. com And clicking on our resources page and events and you will Find it there. We’ve got three amazing technology gurus that are going to be there to answer your toughest questions.

[00:00:23] Steve Fretzin: So please join us and sign up today.

[00:00:31] Darren Wurz: You’re listening to Be That Lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Each episode, your host, author and lawyer coach, Steve Fretzin, will take a deeper dive helping you grow your law practice in less time with greater results. Now here’s your host, Steve Fretzin.

[00:00:53] Steve Fretzin: Hey, everybody. Welcome to Be That Lawyer. I am so, so happy that you’re here, that you’re with me. I don’t know. Are you in your car? Are you walking your dog? Are you doing laundry? Are you billing hours? What the heck are you doing? I don’t know. Um, but I’d love to hear about what you’re up to and I would love for you to let us know how we’re doing.

[00:01:09] Steve Fretzin: If you think we’re doing a great job, give us a great review on your. iPhone or wherever you’re hearing this. If we’re doing a lousy job, well then just stop listening. Don’t give us any review at all. I think that’s a fair, a fair exchange. This show has been around for just over three and a half years. I think we’re coming up on 310, 320 episodes.

[00:01:26] Steve Fretzin: That’s quite a pace. And again, what this show is all about is helping you to be that lawyer. Somebody who’s confident, organized, and a skilled rainmaker. And just to give you insights real quick about Fredson, we only do two things. We help ambitious attorneys. Individual attorneys to dramatically grow their law practices through a very intensive MBA style training and coaching combination seems to be getting some pretty good results for the folks out there that work with me.

[00:01:51] Steve Fretzin: And then, of course, the Rainmaker roundtables, business developer roundtables, where you can be in a peer advisory group with other successful, ambitious, hungry to grow lawyers that are already kind of doing great stuff and just want to keep the momentum going. Uh, those are the two things. So if you’re in kind of a change situation, changing firms, moving laterally, want to advance at your own, solo, need to get to your first million, that kind of stuff, those are probably the people that are going to work best with me.

[00:02:16] Steve Fretzin: And that’s enough about that. We’ve got Darren waiting in the wings. How’s it going, D? Hey,

[00:02:21] Darren Wurz: it’s going great. How are

[00:02:22] Steve Fretzin: you? Yeah. Can I call you big D? Sure. That works for me. You don’t mind? Okay. Uh, we’re not gonna, I’m not gonna actually do that. But, uh, anyway, Darren, great to see you, man. We’ve got, it’s so funny.

[00:02:33] Steve Fretzin: The quote of the show, and I don’t know if I saw it in the notes and then said it to a group of my clients the other day, and they were like blown away because they thought it was my quote. And um, I told them I, that it wasn’t. Now, wait a second. You’re giving your grandma and your dad responsibility for this quote.

[00:02:49] Steve Fretzin: It’s, they absolutely did not come up with this, but that’s okay. We can all take credit for it equally. The quote of the show from Jared is, people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. Yeah. I have, we have to look that up at some point. Cause that, that is a really good quote that you heard what growing up and that I am now using and, but it came from someone much smarter than us maybe.

[00:03:10] Darren Wurz: I, I hope so, you know, but it, it, um, it’s something my dad always said, and of course he always said that my grandma always said so, you know, that, yeah, that’s where I got it from, at least,

[00:03:23] Steve Fretzin: all right, well, we’re going to look that up. Maybe we’ll look that up during the show. We’ll get an answer to that. But obviously that should resonate with people, especially the people in the, how I use it was like, I’ve got a client who doesn’t shut up.

[00:03:33] Steve Fretzin: Like he just keeps talking and talking. And I said to him, I go, cool. I know you know a lot about this subject, okay, but people don’t really care that you know all this until they know that you, they don’t care that, you know, until they know that you care about them. So let’s shut up. Let’s ask questions.

[00:03:49] Steve Fretzin: Let’s listen. Let’s empathize. Let’s be a part of that, you know, collaboration. But what, tell me that was my take. What’s your take on it?

[00:03:57] Darren Wurz: Yeah. In the financial world, you know, there’s this body of knowledge there’s, and you can always. Learn more things, you know, and honestly, you can figure a lot of stuff out on your own, you know, you can go to Google, you can ask Google, you know, but, um, when you’re looking for someone to work with, when you’re looking for a financial advisor, one of the qualities you really need to know, need to have, you need to have someone who cares about you and cares about your situation because everything else is going to flow from that.

[00:04:23] Darren Wurz: If they really And that’s not something that comes from a certification or anything like that, you can get more certifications, but your character is something that is hard to teach. It is internal and that’s not something that can be taught. It comes from within you. You either have it or you don’t.

[00:04:43] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, right on. And by the way, um, I did have a chance to look it up. It either came from Theodore Roosevelt, Teddy Roosevelt, or John Maxwell, who I’m not 100% sure who that is. Thanks bud. Anyway, so now we know why it maybe came from your grandma because she stole it from Teddy R. Maybe. Well, Darren Mann, welcome to the show.

[00:05:00] Steve Fretzin: Um, you just had me on your show, The Lawyer Millionaire, and I love doing it and I’m so happy that you’re with me today. Yeah, and this is your biz. This is your jam. You’re helping lawyers become millionaires if they’re already, you know, got their own firm and how do they translate that into Their own, you know, their own wealth and real wealth.

[00:05:18] Steve Fretzin: And, um, give us a little background, how you got into this and leading into your be that Laura tipping point.

[00:05:24] Darren Wurz: Yeah, it was, uh, kind of a long journey and it didn’t start here. That’s for sure. Although the business I’m in now is a family business. And so maybe this was always my destiny. You know, as my dad was, is still a financial advisor, his dad before him.

[00:05:37] Darren Wurz: So it was kind of a legacy in that way. But yeah, I wanted to kind of do my own thing, so I got out and uh, wanted to be a teacher, I went to school for that, I got a degree in biology and education, started teaching 8th and 9th grade science, and I did that for 5 years in Cincinnati. But, you know, a few years into that I kind of realized that it wasn’t a good fit for me, I was burned out, and I wasn’t um, enjoying life very much, I was stressed, you know.

[00:06:04] Darren Wurz: I would come home from work and I just would crash. You know? It was, it was tough work. Maybe it .

[00:06:09] Steve Fretzin: Wait a sec. Can I stop you a second? Are you trying to say that teenagers are difficult? Uh, I hadn’t heard till now. I hadn’t really heard that. Well, you know, and it,

[00:06:17] Darren Wurz: it wasn’t all that, I mean, I enjoyed working with kids, but there are so many other stressors, you know, the work environment working for you have to work for good boss.

[00:06:28] Darren Wurz: If you don’t have a great boss, that makes it tough, you know, so those are, you know, I’m sure a lot of attorneys listening to this show have experienced similar things, perhaps. Right.

[00:06:40] Steve Fretzin: Right. Some politicking going on in the law firm and some, some ego driven bosses in the law firms. Yeah. That’s, uh, that’s been known to occur as well.

[00:06:48] Darren Wurz: So I said, okay, something has to change. Something has got to be different. I can’t continue to do this until I am 65 years old. Not going to work. I’m not going to make it. Yeah. So, yeah.

[00:07:02] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. So you’re, you know, the lawyer millionaire, your worst financial services, you transitioned from teaching into the financial services.

[00:07:10] Steve Fretzin: And I’m assuming that you didn’t start off working with lawyers. Is that something that you, that you worked? How’d you figure that out? Like, I figured out I got pulled into it, maybe kicking and screaming, uh, you know, back in the recession of 2008 and nine. Yeah. And just saw like a tremendous need for the services I provide business development, sales, free selling methodologies.

[00:07:30] Steve Fretzin: How did you fall into the space?

[00:07:32] Darren Wurz: Yeah, definitely was not on purpose and I did not foresee this happening when I started out as a financial advisor. I didn’t know the first thing about marketing. I didn’t know the first thing about business development or running a business or anything like that. I mean, I knew my skills.

[00:07:46] Darren Wurz: I knew personal planning, I knew retirement planning, but as far as running a business and building a business, nothing. So that was, you know, very interesting and I learned on the job, I, uh, I, I learned how to do that just from hard experience, the, the, the school of hard knocks. Out of necessity and I quit my job and started my practice and I had a few months of pay as a teacher, you know, get paid for the summer.

[00:08:11] Darren Wurz: So I’m like, Oh, great. You know, I’ll get paid for three months and three months. I’ll have my business built up. It’ll be booming and things will be great. Oh, guess again. Three months like that all the time. No. Uh, that three months that, um, income ended and I was like, Oh wow. So I have, it’s do or die, it is do or die time.

[00:08:34] Darren Wurz: And I did what a lot of business owners make the mistake of doing. I supplemented my income. I survived on my retirement funds and things like that. But you know, I understand that sometimes you have to do that. And sometimes that you have no other choice, but I did reach a tipping point, another tipping point where I said, yeah, double tip enough is enough.

[00:08:58] Darren Wurz: I said, it’s, it’s do or die. I’ve been pulling money out of retirement to kind of stay afloat and in the hopes that my business is going to build itself up. And I reached a point where I said, okay, we’re going to do this. We’re just going to make it happen. No matter what, I am not pulling another dime out of my retirement.

[00:09:18] Darren Wurz: I’m done with that. I am going to make it happen full stop. And I did it. You know, I, not anything of my own, but I said, okay, I’m going to put the work in, we’re going to do it when it needs to be done. And we’re going to make it happen. And that’s, I think that’s a great, inspiring thing for people listening.

[00:09:39] Darren Wurz: You can do it too, you know, it’s tough to build a business. It’s tough to launch out on your own, but you know, the cool thing about it is if you put in the hard work and determination, if you learn the skills you need to learn, you can build the business that you want. I mean, let

[00:09:58] Steve Fretzin: me ask you a question and this isn’t meant to be self serving, but I’m curious if you.

[00:10:02] Steve Fretzin: Had thought about engaging someone to help you with sales to help you with figuring some of this stuff out versus just like, it seems like sheer force and effort that you had to put in to get it done. Is that a consideration you had? Did you not know that existed at the time?

[00:10:16] Darren Wurz: I did start to use some folks to help me, you know, not, uh, in a huge cohesive, like here, come help me build a pool.

[00:10:23] Darren Wurz: Huge marketing campaign, but I, I engaged a marketing team to help me write my monthly blog articles and send those out to my distribution list and to kind of help me fine tune some of my image and, and branding and some of that sort of thing. So yes, I did not in a huge way, but where I could, you know, I didn’t have a whole lot of money to spend, but I did spend a little bit on faith that there would be some return there.

[00:10:53] Darren Wurz: Where I thought I could use some help and a lot of where I used the help was in creating my elevator speech, really fine tuning that to my target market. And that really paid some very handsome dividends. Uh, so that was very helpful and a lot of audio books, by the way. Oh,

[00:11:11] Steve Fretzin: yeah, that’s it. I mean, again, educate, you know, like lawyers spend a lot of time learning the law and then they have to learn their specific practice area, their specific niche.

[00:11:21] Steve Fretzin: Maybe they’re in an industry. It’s a certain type of, uh, you know, of, um, maybe type of trial they’re going to run. And then to learn business development as a skill, to learn marketing as a skill, social media as a skill, time management as a skill. They’re all learned. Nobody’s, you know, shot out of the, you know, shot out of the womb with those skills.

[00:11:39] Steve Fretzin: So. They are things that are, you know, being taught in college, you know, in fact, one of my clients is very young and was talking about, yeah, and her, you know, college, they were, they were teaching her LinkedIn and making sure that they were using it on a regular basis. So there is, there is that happening, but I think that’s an important point is that, you know, you can try to figure stuff out yourself.

[00:11:59] Steve Fretzin: That’s fine. That’s one way to go. And others to try to bring other people in that know what, you know, know what, so like, I don’t know enough about my money, so I’m just going to figure it out and throw money around. Well, no, I’m going to hire Darren, right? And I’m going to have it all focused in the right direction because I’m, I’m bringing someone with experience in a certain area where I don’t, not going to just try to try to, you know, talk my way through it.

[00:12:22] Steve Fretzin: That being said, we still need to get to the point where you built this financial services business. When did it convert to lawyers and focusing on that, that particular niche?

[00:12:32] Darren Wurz: Well, the pandemic played a really, really important role in that transition. And I’m sure. That, um, will be the story for lots of people, um, in terms of their, their business and their life and, and how that affected things.

[00:12:45] Darren Wurz: I kind of started focusing on attorneys and focusing on lawyers because I knew that I needed to focus on a particular niche because I needed to differentiate myself in order for marketing. There are a lot of financial advisors out there. And it’s very difficult to stand out in the crowd. And that’s true for attorneys as well, uh, who are trying to stand out in the crowd.

[00:13:05] Darren Wurz: So I knew I needed to do that and a lot of my early clients were attorneys. I had done a lot of networking, I got involved with the local chamber of commerce and things like that. I met a lot of attorneys and many of them became clients. So I was looking over my list of clients and I was like, okay, what specialty can I develop and can I hone in on that’s going to fit my existing client base?

[00:13:24] Darren Wurz: and really try to make that something. And so I decided to focus on attorneys. Now, that has morphed considerably because I realized even that was too broad of a specialization. And so it’s lawyers and it’s law firm owners. And really that’s kind of where I put a lot of my focus because there’s a lot of challenges that law firm owners have.

[00:13:47] Darren Wurz: But I started doing, uh, CLE presentations with the local bar association on financial planning topics for attorneys. Tax minimization, retirement planning, succession planning. Those were extremely well received. I started to get clients from those, and that was going really, really well. The other thing that played into it is when I surveyed the landscape, and I looked at the world of financial advisors, I saw very few that were focused on the legal profession.

[00:14:15] Darren Wurz: There’s a lot of financial advisors that focus on business owners or people close to retirement or things like that, but I did not see very many focused on legal professionals at all. So I kind of saw it as a golden opportunity to go in that direction. Well, then the pandemic happened and the business model changed completely.

[00:14:35] Darren Wurz: Networking was done, it was dead, and so I decided This is the time to kind of go for it completely, because I realized that my geography was unlimited and I could work with anybody. So I started doing webinars. I did webinars on taxes, retirement planning, succession planning for attorneys and law firm owners.

[00:14:56] Darren Wurz: Those went great. You know, a lot of people were sitting around with not much to do. They’re watching webinars. And I started to get clients all over the place. Florida, California, New York, South Carolina, you name it. And so I realized that this was a great business model. And then fast forward to, you know, during that time, I also decided to write the book.

[00:15:19] Darren Wurz: And so wrote the Lawyer Millionaire and, uh, was fortunate to have it, uh, picked up and published by the American Bar Association, which was podcast.

[00:15:34] Darren Wurz: And in all of this, I’ve learned so much and I continue to learn, you know, when I first started focusing on lawyers, I just thought mostly this was a marketing thing, you know, to really design your practice and, and, and such to serve your particular niche. But as I’ve gotten into it, I’ve realized there is so much knowledge under the surface that when you really start to work with law firm owners, you really start to understand their world and the challenges and opportunities that they face.

[00:16:03] Darren Wurz: Hey

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[00:17:51] Steve Fretzin: And I know one of them is that. Many of many lawyers are kind of bad with money, like bad with collections. They’re bad with like looking at a statement and understanding how much profit there should be based on, you know, a per attorney or all the different factors that go into looking at the financials of a law, a running law firm.

[00:18:11] Steve Fretzin: And then on top of that, How much should they make? How much should they put away? You know, how does the, and are they good at savings or are they living beyond their means? So kind of, what are you seeing as kind of the top two or three things that you’re, that lawyers struggle with around the money?

[00:18:27] Darren Wurz: Probably the biggest thing is cashflow, cashflow, cashflow, cashflow. I think, you know, maybe it’s not necessarily that they’re bad at money. It’s just that they are, haven’t taken the opportunity to really focus on it and learn about it. Mostly attorney, you know, there are some, the attorneys that have taken the time to focus on it.

[00:18:45] Darren Wurz: They’re great at it, you know, but because it wasn’t taught in law school, they haven’t been exposed to it. They haven’t really had an opportunity to learn about the business of law. And the other thing is they’re so darn busy. They want to maximize billable hours. You know, they’re focused on doing their work and then they got to be a business owner too at the same time.

[00:19:06] Darren Wurz: Okay. So when do I have time to look at my money? Yeah. Just

[00:19:09] Steve Fretzin: kind of gets pushed, pushed to the, to the wayside. Absolutely. And then. Let’s say that someone is not great with money and the cash flow. What, how do they, you know, outside of like, you know, hiring someone to do it for them? I mean, how do they get, start getting awareness?

[00:19:27] Steve Fretzin: What reports should they be looking at? What are the things they should do to start being more aware of the money?

[00:19:32] Darren Wurz: Yes, you mentioned it. The first step is awareness to know where the money is going. And that’s really the biggest struggle. First of all, the cash flow is fluctuating for a lot of attorneys.

[00:19:44] Darren Wurz: Uh, you know, if you’re a partner in a small firm, you have fluctuating income from the revenues, the profit distribution might change. And so that’s hard to plan for. If you’re a law firm owner, yeah, you have fluctuating income and that makes it very difficult to plan. And what I’ve noticed is a lot of my attorney clients, when they come to me initially, they’re making good money, it’s going in their account, and then it’s being spent, and they don’t know…

[00:20:09] Darren Wurz: They have no handle on where it’s going. And so, you know, maybe they have a spouse who’s spending a lot of money. They have kids who are in college who need money for all kinds of things. And it’s just going, it’s going out. And then the other problem too, sometimes with law firm owners. Is they’re having to put money back into the business because they haven’t planned properly for their business expenses and their, you know, personal needs.

[00:20:35] Darren Wurz: And so they’re paying themselves and then they’re having to put money back into the business because the business is having a shortfall. So those are some of the issues around cashflow that I have seen. And so it starts with awareness, it starts with tracking, it starts with, you know, having some kind of system where you can monitor what your spending is.

[00:20:57] Darren Wurz: There are a lot of free systems out there to use like Mint or different, uh, budgeting apps. You know, you can connect all of your different spending accounts, bring in all your transactions into one place and you can see them. That makes it challenging. You know, a lot of people I work with, they’ve got multiple credit cards.

[00:21:13] Darren Wurz: They’ve got multiple bank accounts. There’s all kinds of things going on. It’s a complex picture. So it’s really important to bring it all into one place. So you can see it, you can manage it, and you can know what’s happening.

[00:21:25] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. The lack of tracking, I think that’s, that’s sort of across the, you know, across the, the gambit of most people don’t track things, they don’t track their time, I mean, lawyers track their time, they don’t track their BD time and results, they don’t track.

[00:21:41] Steve Fretzin: The money coming in, money going out, the budget at home, you know, how much, you know, they need to save to get to, I think that’s one of the things that I love about my financial planner and what you do is we can, you can, I’m sure talk to this, but all right, Steve, you want to retire when, or you want to start to slow down.

[00:21:57] Steve Fretzin: I’m never going to retire. Right. So that’s not going to happen. Tell I can’t talk anymore or something, but if there is going to be a slowdown, right? Like I’m going to go from a hundred miles an hour to 50 at some point, let’s just say it’s 60, 65 years old, whatever it is. All right. So then how much do I need to have for that to get me through, you know, living to 90 or a hundred or whatever the number is these days, it’s always seems to be going up.

[00:22:21] Steve Fretzin: And then they said, it’s going down and it’s going back up. So talk to that a little bit, how do people sort of realize, you know, their lack of planning and budgeting can then affect their retirement?

[00:22:35] Darren Wurz: Yeah, and it’s, you know, You have to think about what that picture looks like for you. And so with our planning process for attorneys and law firm owners, we start with goal setting because we have to know where we’re going.

[00:22:54] Darren Wurz: Before any of this matters, we have to know where we’re going. And sometimes that is what is necessary to get, first of all, get yourself on board with saving. Maybe get a spouse who’s reluctant to save on board with the savings plan. Is let’s create an inspiring vision for what that future is going to look like.

[00:23:15] Darren Wurz: And then we can figure out how much money we need to save to get there. And it’s not all about retirement. You know, many law firm owners I work with, they don’t want to necessarily retire completely. They want to do what you said. They want to have more of a phase down into retirement. So maybe into more of an ownership, managerial leadership kind of position at their firm.

[00:23:38] Darren Wurz: And then kind of slowly phase out and do something different, but no one is inspired by saving month. You know, no one’s inspired by, okay, maybe you are.

[00:23:50] Steve Fretzin: Uh, I just raised my hand everybody. Cause I honestly, it’s not so much how much I make, it’s how much I sock away like a squirrel, you know, right? Like I have three different savings plans, you know, from a 401k to a cash balance to a SAP.

[00:24:03] Steve Fretzin: And I just like, it’s my goal is to hit my numbers. Yes. But it’s also like, can I fulfill, you know, getting these, these three batches, like completely, but anyway, that’s me, maybe I’m a, maybe I’m a wacko, but, um, yeah, I don’t have the fancy boat or the jet that I’m trying to get around in, or the, you know, 3 million home.

[00:24:20] Steve Fretzin: Because I’m really excited about, like, what can I put away this month? Anyway, so I’m the weirdo that, that, you know, rare, rare, rare breed,

[00:24:27] Darren Wurz: maybe. Well, that’s okay. You know, uh, but then, you know, what I want to talk about with my clients is, what are we doing it for? And for a lot of law firm owners and lawyers, I think, You know, and I do this too.

[00:24:40] Darren Wurz: I’m, you know, a lot of us, other professionals who own businesses, we do this too. We get so focused on building our business and running our business that we forget to step back and say, okay, what is all this for in 10 years? What do I want my life to look like? So we start there. We start by creating a very, uh, inspiring and motivating vision for where we’re trying to go and what we’re trying to accomplish.

[00:25:04] Darren Wurz: And I have my clients write a personal financial mission statement. Something that can unify what they’re trying to do, because, you know, it’s not about who dies with the most money,

[00:25:17] Steve Fretzin: right? That’s, that’s not necessarily,

[00:25:20] Darren Wurz: you can’t take it with you. So let’s enjoy it. Let’s create some goals and retirement is a goal, but of course, you know, along the way, what do you want to accomplish in five years and 10 years and 15 years?

[00:25:32] Darren Wurz: What is the life that you’re trying to build and create for yourself? And then we go from there and we create a specific plan for how much money do we need to set aside to achieve those goals. And then we can use that to create a cash flow plan. And that’s what it is, it’s a cash flow plan. There’s no such thing as savings.

[00:25:51] Darren Wurz: It’s deferred spending. Because, you know, save it for what? You know what I mean? Someone’s gonna use it at some point. And so, it’s all about what is the purpose. And the cash flow plan that we create with clients is… Let’s be purposeful and strategic with our money. Instead of spending 2, 000 a month on Amazon purchases for random crap that we don’t need, let’s be strategic about Where we’re trying to get to and what we want our life to look like and let’s be purposeful about it

[00:26:25] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, and I think you get that plan together and then you know, you you make just smarter decisions Oh, we’re gonna spend 20 grand on this, you know crazy trip, you know, is that really you know?

[00:26:35] Steve Fretzin: I know that sounds like fun But you know right now we’re also strapped for cash and we’re trying to make sure we stay up to date on our you know college plan savings for the 12 kids we have or whatever, you know, and you know, then, then you make some, some, maybe some more logical decisions as opposed to like either spending money you shouldn’t or going into debt.

[00:26:53] Steve Fretzin: I think there’s, I live in a neighborhood where I just walk around and I go, I wonder who here is, is really putting money away and who here’s living beyond there. I mean, not because I live in the nicest neighborhood in the world, but you know, there are people living in million plus dollar homes in my neighborhood.

[00:27:07] Steve Fretzin: And, and I don’t know, I just, I always wonder, and I do hear rumors that, you know, there’s people that are. You know, all over the place, just living, you know, the life that they want to live, but they don’t really have the cashflow to support that.

[00:27:20] Darren Wurz: That’s one of the absolute secrets. And it’s not really a secret.

[00:27:23] Darren Wurz: It’s one of the absolute, uh, secrets to success though, in terms of finances is to live within your means and actually live a little bit below your means. Yeah. You know, common wisdom is that you’re, you’re monthly. Housing costs shouldn’t, you know, exceed 28% of your, your income. I think even that’s too high.

[00:27:44] Darren Wurz: And I have, I have a client that I’m working with right now. He has a 6, 000 a month mortgage and it is the biggest cost. I mean, I do his budgeting, I do his cashflow for him and he’s really not spending a whole lot frivolously. He’s not spending a whole lot on dining out or, or things like that. I mean, it’s, it’s all healthy.

[00:28:05] Darren Wurz: It’s all within a good range, but it’s that huge mortgage payment. That is just a weight on his cashflow. And it’s like, okay. And that’s hard to get out of, you know, I mean, so just keep paying until, you know, it’s done or what do you do? Do you make a big change? Sometimes you have to make a big change and sometimes you have to have the courage to say, okay, we’re going to do something different.

[00:28:31] Darren Wurz: No one likes to downsize, but maybe that’s what needs to happen. Maybe something dramatic needs to change that is not going to be comfortable in the moment, but it’s going to set you up for a dramatically higher level of success in the future. And is that

[00:28:46] Steve Fretzin: the area that people need to look into mostly is like what’s your top three expenses and is it realistic that you can maintain those and sock money away and have the nice trip every year and send the kids to camp and the things that, you know, maybe that family might agree are of high importance.

[00:29:07] Steve Fretzin: Is that what are the, I mean, and then, you know, what do they do when they’re in a 6, 000 a month or 10, 000 a month mortgage and they realize that’s maybe not, I mean, they just have to downsize, is that the key? It’s all about…

[00:29:22] Darren Wurz: Or just make more, right? It could be, it could be making more. Um, but how realistic is that?

[00:29:26] Darren Wurz: I mean, is that, is that a definite possibility for you? It depends if

[00:29:30] Steve Fretzin: they hire me or not. Uh, see what I did there? Uh, but yeah, that’s, but, but I know for some people there might be some level or form of, of reality or cap on what they’re really going to make if they’re, again, you know, reinvesting in the business and, you know, it’s not about, you know, how much more they can pay themselves.

[00:29:48] Steve Fretzin: It’s more about like, how do we make sure this business stays, stays sustainable over years.

[00:29:54] Darren Wurz: Yeah, you need to be realistic somewhat. Um, hopefully you don’t, you’re not in a position where you have to make dramatic changes. Right. I mean, but if you’ve gotten yourself into a situation where it’s just totally not sustainable, then you’re going to have to make a dramatic change and that can be very difficult, but it, it might be necessary because here’s the thing, right?

[00:30:12] Darren Wurz: You know, we get in, our incomes grow, you’re making a lot of money and you have, you experience what I call lifestyle creep. Your lifestyle slowly starts to expand and to grow itself. You know, and if your monthly expenses are 20 grand a month, okay, are you going to be able to maintain that lifestyle in retirement?

[00:30:33] Darren Wurz: You really want to retire and you want to have a lifestyle of 20 grand a month, you’re going to need a much bigger pot of money. You know, I, I often joke retirement is always possible. It’s just a question of. How much you’re going to spend each year and you got to kind

[00:30:51] Steve Fretzin: of work backwards. You got to kind of look at it and like break it down and work, work backwards of, of what you’re going to need.

[00:30:57] Steve Fretzin: And then, and then, or want, and then, you know, how much do you actually have to put away to get to that number? So you have that security, really good stuff. Darren, um, you have a new book out, the lawyer millionaire. Can you take a moment and just talk and then that we’ll call that the game changing book or podcast, but yeah, give us a little, a little insight of what’s in that.

[00:31:15] Steve Fretzin: But I appreciate you sending me a copy and I have to check it out and I will. Uh, give us the Reader’s Digest version though.

[00:31:21] Darren Wurz: The Lawyer Millionaire is meant to be kind of a comprehensive guide on personal finance. For lawyers and law firm owners, there is stuff in there for every stage of your career.

[00:31:33] Darren Wurz: So start just starting out dealing with student loans, buying a house, getting your investment plan started all the way up to preparing for retirement and succession and all of that stuff. Uh, there’s stuff in there for business owners on the structure of your business, tax strategies to minimize your tax, uh, liability and maximize your tax efficiency.

[00:31:56] Darren Wurz: So I tried to basically take all of my wisdom and knowledge and put it in a book format for people who want a one stop shop, you know, a guide to help them at various stages of their life and their career, uh, to make really smart investment and financial decisions.

[00:32:13] Steve Fretzin: Well, everybody checked that and that’s on Amazon.

[00:32:16] Darren Wurz: It’s on Amazon. It’s also available from the ABA. Uh, if you’re a member of the ABA, uh, you can get a discount on the book, uh, through their website.

[00:32:25] Steve Fretzin: Very cool. Very cool. And as we wrap up, I want to take a moment to thank our sponsors, of course, MoneyPenny, helping you get rid of those phone trees or the full time reception person who’s overpaid and probably is unnecessary if you can use MoneyPenny to handle your phones.

[00:32:39] Steve Fretzin: We’ve got, of course, Oversure, so you’re looking to ethically share fees. With lawyers around the country, you want to look into Overture. law for that, and of course GetVisible, who’s helping on the digital marketing side, the retargeting, pay per click, SEO, website redesign. If you go to fretson. com, you’ll see.

[00:32:56] Steve Fretzin: The amazing work of get visible and you can check them out. And if you’re interested in a copy of sales, free selling, which also is available on Amazon, but you’d like a free copy of the ebook version, then you can get that by going to fretson. com slash sales dash free dash selling. And you can grab a copy there.

[00:33:16] Steve Fretzin: Darren Wurtz. Thank you so much, man, for being on the show, um, sharing your insights. I think this is an area that. Isn’t covered very often, um, on a show like this and it needs, it needed to be. Uh, because ultimately, you know, why are we in this? Why are we practicing law? Why are we coaching? Why are we doing the things we do?

[00:33:34] Steve Fretzin: In many ways, it’s to help people and the other way is we need to provide for our family. So, uh, really, really appreciate you doing that.

[00:33:40] Darren Wurz: Thank you so much. It’s been fun. And, uh, we’ll have to talk more and dive into even more detail because I feel like we’d only scratched the surface. I was,

[00:33:49] Steve Fretzin: that’s the 30 minutes we have, but it’s, but it was a good 30 minutes.

[00:33:52] Steve Fretzin: And also, you know. I always try to, and I may have mentioned this to you, like try to pull out some nuggets of things that are going to really help people, um, listening to a 30 minute show and get a couple of takeaways. And I feel like we really did that today. Um, and I’m not going to go back and repeat them, but they’ll be in the show notes and everybody check it out.

[00:34:09] Steve Fretzin: So thank you, Darren. Thank you, everybody. Thanks for spending some time with us today and, uh, really working on your business. And then that’s what the show’s all about. Helping you be that lawyer, someone who’s confident, organized, and a skilled rainmaker. Take care, everybody. Be safe, be well, and we will talk again real soon.

[00:34:29] Darren Wurz: Thanks for listening to Be That Lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website, Fretzin. com, for additional information and to stay up to date on the marketing trend.

[00:34:46] Darren Wurz: For more information and important links about today’s episode, check out today’s show notes.