We’re kicking off the podcast with a little introduction to our show and host, Ryan Cravitz. Before we dive into the financial planning conversations we’ll have on future episodes, we wanted to lay the foundation for what’s to come on the show by giving you a little background on our business and how Cravitz Financial began.
Plus, we’ll give you a little preview of what’s to come on the podcast as we move forward. There’s plenty to discuss in the financial world as it relates to planning and we’ll begin tackling those items on future shows.
Here’s some of what you’ll learn on the podcast:
- How Ryan stumbled into the financial planning industry during college. (1:39)
- What financial planning looks like for our clients and a story that we’re proud of. (5:38)
- The one thing Ryan wants you to know about him. (8:48)
- What we like most about living in Southern California. (10:15)
- Who will get the most out of our podcast. (12:12)
Thanks for listening to this episode. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions about your financial plan.
Ryan: My passion for this industry and what I do on a day-to-day basis only gets stronger, and I think it comes from the clients and people that I meet and stories that I hear, and the impact that the planning does to help people.
Announcer: When it comes to financial planning, you need to cut through the jargon so that you can understand how to achieve your own retirement success. This is Candid Conversations: Retirement Talk with Ryan Cravitz of Cravitz Financial & Insurance Solutions.
Ben: Well, hello and welcome in to Candid Conversations: Retirement Talk with Ryan Cravitz. Great to have you on our first episode of the podcast. Goal for today really, Ryan, is just to kind of get people a little background on yourself, your business, and the reasons why we're doing the podcast, because not everybody decides to start a podcast. It's a bit of an interesting and unique avenue for a lot of people, but I think it's a great place to educate and inform people and I'm looking forward to it. So how you feeling about the first episode?
Ryan: I'm feeling good, I've been thinking about doing this for a while, so I'm excited to finally get this off the ground.
Ben: That's awesome, so I'm looking forward to it as well. Again, we'll get into a lot of the retirement talk as we go forward, and we'll get into a lot of those conversations on future podcasts. But today again, is if for anybody finding the podcast for the first time or for anyone that's found the podcast down the road and wants to go back and learn a little bit more about you, we want to kind of set the foundation for the podcast as we move forward. So that'll be the goal today, breaking it up again into a little background on the business, on you personally a little bit, and then also the people you work with and what you want them to get out of it here on the podcast, it should be a good show.
Let's jump into it, Ryan, I want to start with the business a little bit, and as a financial advisor, what does that mean to you? How would you define that? And kind of how do you look at that profession?
Ryan: It's a good question, and the way I would answer that now today is very different I think, than when I began. When I got my start in this industry was over 20 years ago. I was fresh out of college and at the time I really didn't know for sure what I wanted to do for a living, and I just kind of stumbled my way into the financial planning industry, quite frankly. It was kind of funny actually, the last semester of college, I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do and I went to the career center and just for kicks, I took this test to see what you should do for a living, and the number one or number two answer was be a financial advisor. So yeah, I was like, "Okay, I'm 22, 23 years old. I'm not quite sure what all that means, but let me look into this." So I did.
Ben: That's pretty funny because a lot of those tests, we took those growing up, but I mean, I don't know how many people actually had that aligned with their futures, that's remarkable.
Ryan: Yeah, it was crazy because it was I was in the last semester, I ended up getting recruited by somebody and ended up interviewing, and then I ended up starting my career in the financial planning industry and I figured, "Hey, I'm going to give this a shot, let's do it." But the interesting thing was is that early on in my career, I mean I was young, I was still learning, and I really didn't... and I admit this to people all the time, that I really didn't have a huge passion for what I was doing. I was still, I think learning and trying to figure out the value of really what I could do and how I could help people, but you kind of fast forward until 2008, right around that time period of The Great Recession, and that's really when I think that it hit home for me because I started to realize the value of what I do and how I could help people because you see people that lost over half of their money, some of them and their retirement accounts, you saw people that lost their homes.
I mean it was a tough time for a lot of people, and seeing that and then realizing the difference that I could make, that really had an impact on me. And then you fast forward from there my passion for this industry and what I do on a day-to-day basis only gets stronger. And I think it comes from the clients and people that I meet and stories that I hear and the impact that the planning does to help people.
Ben: It's interesting because I think a lot of people on the flip side of that, as an investor you enjoy these kind of smooth and easy times, right? So I think of just the last decade before maybe 2020, it's a pretty smooth ride coming out of 2008, and then it takes these big moments to kind of wake you up, so that's interesting that to hear it from your perspective as an advisor that that's kind of I won't say it, I'm not going to speak for you, say it was a wake up call necessarily, but just it kind of changed your mindset on the way you approached things, much like it does for an investor.
Ryan: It's so true because when I first started in the industry, it was in the year 2000. And if you recall, between about 2000 to 2002, that's when the so-called tech crash was going on or tech crash was going on. And it didn't have as much of an impact on me, I think because I was so young, I didn't have many clients at that time, I was just kind of getting started, but I definitely did learn the value of diversification firsthand through others because many people were not diversified, lost a lot of money and so that kind of happened, but then after that the economy was doing pretty well and the market was doing well until right about 2008, right around that time period.
Ben: Yeah. Well, we'll talk a lot about your strategies and your approach to retirement planning as we move forward here on the podcast, but if somebody was just to ask you, "Hey, what is financial planning truly look like for your clients?" What would you tell them?
Ryan: For me, it's really a comprehensive approach. My clients, most of them are either retired or they're planning to sometime in the next five to 10 years, at least that's most of them. And it's really about putting all the pieces of the puzzle together to help people to retire successfully. And that's everything, it's not just the investments, it's how are we going to get the income that we need year by year? What are we going to do with social security? What about Medicare? What about long-term care? It's all of these different things that we need to look at together.
Ben: Very good. And what do you enjoy most about what you do day to day?
Ryan: I would say what I enjoy the most is taking somebody, and I'm thinking of somebody right now. There was a guy a couple of years ago that he came to me, he was 61 years old and he hated his job, he hated going to work every day, but he felt like he didn't have a choice. He had to continue to go to work that he could not afford to retire. And he drove over an hour to get there, he drove over an hour to get back home. So literally Monday through Friday was just about working for the weekend, and we really had a heartfelt conversation about, you're 61, I mean none of us know how long we have, not to sound morbid at all, but none of us know how long we have. I said, "Maybe it is possible that you could retire." I said, "Let's at least take a look and see if it's possible and if it's not, let's design the plan to figure out when it can be possible so that you know when you do have to work until."
And long story short, he was able to retire. However, he needed to work some sort of part-time job. I mean he was making about $120,000 a year at his job. And like I told him, I said, "If you can just find a part-time job for the next, let's say 5, 6, 7 years and make 20 or $25,000 a year or something like that to just supplement everything else that you have, you're going to be fine." And the difference that made for him to be able to know that he could retire and that he could make this type of transition. I can't think of the words right now, but that's an emotional moment. That means a lot, to be able to help people to do something like that.
Ben: Yeah, I mean that's truly what it's all about and why you do what you do. That's a great story and I'm glad that hopefully he was able to kind of find some happiness and not stress and struggle with the day-to-day, you don't want to be in that position, so that's great. I'm looking forward to hearing more of those stories. All right, let's talk a little bit about you personally. What is one thing, and it can be anything, it could be really personal or not at all, but one thing you want people to know about you.
Ryan: Well, so I'll just tell a little bit about me. I mean I'm born and raised in Southern California and grew up in the LA area, was down in San Diego. I went to San Diego State, lived there for a few more years, and then back in Orange County, currently live in Newport Beach, tricked my wife into marrying me six years ago. We also have a four year old son together. So my wife's Rachel, my son's Cody, so enjoy living here. One of my hobbies, and it's actually the way I met my wife, is playing beach volleyball.
Ryan: I've been playing for, well, for a long time. I started when I was 18 and nowadays I play usually on Saturdays. And as a family, we all go down to the beach most Saturdays and my parents come down too. They love seeing their grandson and maybe they like watching me play, I don't know, but definitely like seeing their grandson. But we go down, we hang out, and that's one of the reasons we really enjoy living here. But yeah, I actually met my wife, I was down at the beach and saw her there and she was playing with a group and I decided that they needed another player, so that's kind of how that began.
Ben: You got a partner for life now.
Ben: Little did she know, right?
Ben: That's a great story. So your office is there in Irvine, what do you like most about the area that you live in?
Ryan: I mean I'm born and raised here in Southern California, and certainly one of the things we love the most is again, the beach and also the weather.
Ryan: Recently, what was it? I guess up until a couple of weeks ago, it was hot, I mean we were having some hot temperatures here, even at the beach, and I'm thinking, "What is this? We're having to run our air conditioning so much." Usually most of the year we don't need it and we hardly need the heater either, so it's definitely something that we enjoy about this because we're active, we like to be out there, whether it's just walking or going to a park or anything, just being outside and doing things. So being able to do that 12 months out of the year is something that we enjoy.
Ben: Yeah, it's a beautiful area of the country for sure, I'm glad you're able to enjoy that. Is Cody playing any volleyball yet?
Ryan: I think he will at some point-
Ryan: ...because I mean he's four, but for four years old, he's an athletic little kid, that's for sure. And he's tall, I don't know where he's getting his height. I know there's some people on my wife's side of the family because it's definitely not coming from me or from my mom and dad's side of the family, that's for sure.
Ben: That's funny. All right, let's shift gears and kind of close out this first episode talking a little bit about the podcast and the people you work with a little bit. So when you decided, [inaudible 00:11:51] I know you said you've been thinking about this podcast for a little while now. What do you hope people will learn from this show?
Ryan: Yeah, so from this show, I'm just hoping people will learn some things that will help them with their retirement. I'm going to share different tips, different strategies, sometimes we're going to dive deeper into certain areas than others, and I just hope this will help a lot of people.
Ben: Yeah, very good, I'm looking forward to it, I think it will as well. We're going to hone in on a number of specific topics, but if you ever have any questions for us, you're always welcome to reach out to us. Who is your ideal listener as we kind of close this out? Who do you hope is listening? I know you work with people primarily I think over the age of 50 as they're kind of nearing on that last decade or so of before retirement, but is that probably who you hope listens to this? Or can anyone get value out of the show?
Ryan: I think pretty much anybody could get value from this show, but ideally this show's going to be for people that are either retired already or those that are planning to retire sometime in the next five or 10 years, because what we're going to talk about a lot of is about getting all your ducks in a row, right? And figuring out how to make that transition from your working years and then into retirement and making sure that you have the income that you need for the rest of your life and that you can do all the things that you want to be able to do and have the lifestyle that you want to be able to have.
Ben: Very good. Well, we are looking forward to the podcast. Again, just some housekeeping stuff for you. You can find everything online, CravitzFinancial.com, that is the website there. You can also take your retirement ready checkup, you can click on a little button top right corner to take that, but also there's a contact link there as well if you want to get in touch with Ryan. But if you prefer to call, you can always do that at 714-462-9155 and please subscribe to the show wherever you listen, we're on every major podcasting app, so wherever you choose to listen, whether it be Apple or Google or Spotify, you'll find the show there and make sure you hit subscribe for us.
All right, to Ryan, very good. Very good first episode, enjoyed kind of learning a little bit more about you and looking forward to what's to come, excited about it.
Ryan: Absolutely. This is great, I'm looking forward to the next one.
Ben: Well, thank you for listening to Candid Conversations: Retirement Talk with Ryan Cravitz. I am Ben George, thanks for listening, another episode coming soon, so we'll talk to you then.