Podcast

193 The Importance of Financial Planning with Matthew Marcoux

Matthew Marcoux is a Certified Financial Planner™ and co-founder of Candorpath Financial; a fee based Financial Planning firm in Orlando, FL.

For over 18 years, Matthew has provided clients and business owners with guidance and knowledge in four core areas of planning: Retirement Planning ,Tax Planning, Estate Planning and Investment Planning.

When not working with clients, Matthew enjoys spending time boating with his wife Lauren and their two son’s Bryce and Rylan.

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3 Key Points:

  • By using some of these tools, it lengthens that runway that you have so that you don’t get burnt out on your business. I mean, your business needs you to survive. And if you are not in the most healthy either mindsets or physical health, it’s going to suffer and so these are some of the areas that you can use to make sure that you are enjoying and loving what you do and not have to do those tasks that you absolutely can’t stand or just not good at.
  • Once you’ve had and created that business, making sure that you are managing the financial side of it in the most efficient manner possible. And again, that’s either through using savings accounts and budgeting, organizing cash flow, there’s actually a lot of resources out there for you to be able to use to make sure your businesses running in the most efficient manner possible.
  • Paying yourself first is making sure you’ve set yourself a fair and reasonable salary because you can’t continue to do this unless you’re deriving revenue. And so again, once those bills are paid, that is necessary, you know, figuring out what’s leftover and then determining from there, what you’re going to do with that. You gotta have a roof over your head food. So you got to make sure you’re paying yourself first when it comes to, to a business.

Show Notes:

[04:11] Being an entrepreneur was not necessarily money-driven, but it was time driven. I know that my time is most important, and that’s what really kind of drives me to this day.

[04:48] If you can get it done today. If you can fulfill your dream, or at least go one step closer to making your dreams come true, then you’ve spent your time in a pretty wise way where you will not have any regrets, once that moment comes hopefully later than sooner.

[06:15] The first thing I had to budget for was paying the IRS because as we all very well know, they get their money first. And getting that bill on April 14, for me was the biggest eye-opener, especially being in the United States or where a self-employed individual pays not only federal income tax but both sides of FICA tax, Social Security and Medicare tax.

[06:48] I think this all goes back to the two main core competencies of financial planning. The first is organization, having a very good metric for knowing what you have where it’s going and make sure that you know exactly.

[07:26] The second behind an organization is budgeting. You’ve got to know on day one, what’s going out the door and what’s coming in the door and being able to put money in the various buckets.

[10:20] You must be putting together an organized approach so that you know that the bill of all else is going to get paid. Anything else we can figure out ways of floating or taking income from one month or another but that’s the one that needs to get paid and that’s the one that I’ve seen the most stress comes from because there was no intentionality and placed. You must be intentional about your budgeting and your organization.

[12:21] Really creating this bucket system of making sure that when $1 comes in, we know how much needs to go into each one of those three buckets so that we have a very few surprises when it comes to our budget.

[13:15] With pay yourself first is really meant to think about before you scale your business up, make sure that you have enough to live off of and that this is sustainable.

[14:02] Paying yourself first is making sure you’ve set yourself a fair and reasonable salary because you can’t continue to do this unless you’re deriving revenue. And so again, once those bills are paid, that is necessary, you know, figuring out what’s leftover and then determining from there, what you’re going to do with that. You gotta have a roof over your head food. So you got to make sure you’re paying yourself first when it comes to, to a business.

[18:24] Instead of hiring within first looking to see what can be outsourced what can be used with some of these partners that we’ve hooked up with. It’s building your business smarter. What are the best ways to do that some things that we love to think about.

[18:40] Once you’ve had and created that business, making sure that you are managing the financial side of it in the most efficient manner possible. And again, that’s either through using savings accounts and budgeting, organizing cash flow, there’s actually a lot of resources out there for you to be able to use to make sure your businesses running in the most efficient manner possible.

[19:40] By using some of these tools, it lengthens that runway that you have so that you don’t get burnt out on your business. I mean, your business needs you to survive. And if you are not in the most healthy either mindsets or physical health, it’s going to suffer and so these are some of the areas that you can use to make sure that you are enjoying and loving what you do and not have to do those tasks that you absolutely can’t stand or just not good at.

[22:43] Making sure that you do what you love to do, and whatever that happens to be. Just make sure your passion follow your heart, and I think you’ll be successful.

Transcript:

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Christine Schlonski [0:02]
Hi Gorgeous. This is episode number 193. We have the wonderful Matthew Marcoux back on the show.

Matthew Marcoux [0:09]
Hi, this is Matt Marcoux. You’re listening to Heart Sells! Podcast with Christine Schlonski. Enjoy.

Christine Schlonski [0:14]
I can’t wait to dive into the topic of financial planning with Matt. He’s a certified financial planner and the co-founder of Candorpath Financial; a fee-based Financial Planning firm in Orlando, FL. He covers with his knowledge, the four core areas of planning: Retirement Planning , Tax Planning, Estate Planning, and Investment Planning. He has been doing that for over 18 years with his clients. In case he’s not working because he loves and enjoys the book, The 4-Hour Workweek, like I do, Matt, enjoys spending time boating with his beautiful family. So today we’re going to go in deeper into the topic, why financial planning is so important and what you actually need to do once you are starting to make money with your business, or you’re getting to that next level because you are scaling up. So have fun and enjoy this episode. Well, I’m so excited to have you back on the show, Matt, welcome.

Matthew Marcoux [1:19]
Thank you so much for having me. It’s great to be here.

Christine Schlonski [1:22]
Yeah, I loved our first interview about outsourcing. And since you are a financial planner, I would love to dive in even deeper of what can people do once they start making money so that they can really create the lifestyle, the wealth that they want to create, so that they can do whatever they want to do while running an amazingly successful business. You got that real, you got that passion for the finances, and I’m quite sure that doesn’t come from some random something. I would be really curious to know, what was the very first thing you ever sold in your life?

Matthew Marcoux [2:00]
Okay, so what order should I go? So I go there first.

Christine Schlonski [2:04]
Yeah, like, the very first thing, maybe as a kid, as a teenager, what can you remember?

Matthew Marcoux [2:11]
I can’t remember that far back. But I can remember what was most impactful for me. And when I was in college at the University of Central Florida, I work for their call center. And my job was to sell pledges to get into, for money to get to the University of Central Florida. So I had to explain to someone why they should take their hard-earned money and give it back to their alma mater. Most of the time, I was doing this at 7 pm in the middle of dinner. And it was not the easiest thing to sell at that point in time. But that was what really gave me a passion for knowing something really well, having a passion for that, I was very passionate about my school, and then interrupting someone’s dinner to tell them why they should give money to the University. That was the first thing I remember selling. And that was really what launched my career. Not because I was selling something but the people I met during that particular job is what launched me into where I’m at today. So that was a very impactful selling job that I had. That’s really what got me where I’m at today. And a lot of it was phone work. And so again, a lot of my job is on the phone. So it gave me the presence, really good phone presence of the 20-year-old talking to someone much older than me about finances. And that’s really what got me to where I’m at today.

Christine Schlonski [3:24]
Cool. Do you remember the first thing you ever got money for, like that feeling of receiving money for something that you created? Maybe not a job because that’s like something that’s given, you come in, you have a system, you follow it, you get money, but something like that, maybe gave you the idea of entrepreneurship, how it feels receiving money.

Matthew Marcoux [3:50]
Yeah, I don’t know if I could put my finger on that. But I knew very early on. I wanted to have my time with the most important to me. I knew very early on that no matter what I did, is I wanted to make sure that I could control what it is that I was doing with my life and I wasn’t doing it for somebody else. And so that for I think, for me was my main driver, being an entrepreneur was not necessarily money-driven, but it was time driven. I argue now that I probably the world’s worst employee, I’m not used to office hours or vacation time or benefits for that matter, both good and bad. But I know that my time is most important, and that’s what really kind of drives me to this day.

Christine Schlonski [4:32]
Yeah, I also feel that time is, we don’t know how long we have. We probably both seen some dramatic stories around having time on this planet. My thing is always like, “Stop just dreaming, act now.” Because if you can get it done today. If you can fulfill your dream, or at least go one step closer to making your dreams come true, then you’ve spent your time in a pretty wise way where you will not have any regrets, once that moment comes hopefully later than sooner. But I’m also like, being really mindful of how you conduct your business, how you handle your finances, so that you can kind of feel safe because that’s what so many people say, “Well, I have a job, I feel safe. I know I’m going to get this income.” So after you are an entrepreneur, and you have amazing products and services that people want and need and you start selling them, because sales are such an important piece to have a business and not a hobby, you make some revenue. So are there any or is there any advice around that, how people can handle their finances better? Especially you know, at the beginning when they’re not at the six figures yet or the seven or eight figures or whatever. What can they do to feel safer in the environmental surroundings of entrepreneurship where it goes up and down?

Matthew Marcoux [6:05]
That’s a great question. And I struggled with that my first year, is going on being a 10, 99 or being self-employed at that matter. The first thing I had to budget for was paying the IRS because as we all very well know, they get their money first. And getting that bill on April 14, for me was the biggest eye-opener, especially being in the United States or where a self-employed individual pays not only federal income tax but both sides of FICA tax, Social Security and Medicare tax. And I find now that I’ve been in the business for 17 years, the startup folks and those that are making starting to have profit, forget oftentimes that there’s a bill we’ve got to pay before we pay any other bills, and that’s the taxman. So I think this all goes back to the two main core competencies of financial planning. The first is an organization, having a very good metric for knowing what you have where it’s going and make sure that you know exactly. And that’s really where the QuickBooks comes in. I mentioned outsourcing in our previous call. But this is one of the areas that we actually outsource a bookkeeper for us to actually manage our cash flow. Because even though we are in this business of finance, we oftentimes are so busy working on other people’s, we don’t have the time to work on our own. And so you know that for us was a really important element. The second behind the organization is budgeting. You’ve got to know on day one, what’s going out the door and what’s coming in the door and being able to put money in the various buckets. And so for us in our business, we have a savings account like we do on my personal side, we have an annual account that we put annual expenses into that are paid off one time a year, that way that large one-time bill that we get every December, we’re not struggling with, we escrowed for all year long. And then making sure, again from a budgeting standpoint, anything left over, we have an account that we have a like a failsafe, so 10% of anything we make, we put into this account that way we know during those rough years, or those rough months, we have a very good savings account to be able to go into. And then from there, we’re able to budget out the rest of our items. And so again, I think with organization and budgeting, those are the two main areas. I’m not worried about a retirement plan at this point. I’m not worried about any of those other things, those will come with time, but you got to first know where it is. And then most importantly, where is it going. Once you answer those two questions, you’re ahead of the game because you now can pay the bills on time. You can pay the taxman and you know at the end of the day, what you have leftover to pay your own personal lifestyle.

Christine Schlonski [8:48]
Yeah, I love that. I think clarity around that is so important. Because when the money comes in, you need to put something aside to, maybe some surprise bills that come up or maybe the tax bill is higher than you thought, or you didn’t account for something or you need a new software and then all of a sudden you have another monthly payment of $100 or 200, or whatever it is, or you finally start out so when you then need some money for virtual assistant, so if you start now putting money aside, then taking the next step is easier because you already know you are a couple of months ahead of the game, so you don’t get stressed in the process.

Matthew Marcoux [9:35]
Yeah, exactly. And I’ve seen it where so many entrepreneurs come to me, and this is really where our specialty is, is serving as that outsource partner to make sure their finances are organized. A budget is created and they’re sticking to it and then figuring out where the money goes after that. So this is an area that we really specialize in. But I’ve seen so often where a new, again someone who might be coming from the corporate world not used to having to do all of this budgeting on their own but really struggle with it that first year. Again, I keep getting back on the tax bill, because that’s the one non-negotiable that needs to get paid. I always find that waiting until April 14 to figure out what has been doing this last year is not a good way to run business, you must be escrowing. You must be putting together an organized approach so that you know that the bill of all else is going to get paid. Anything else we can figure out ways of floating or taking income from one month or another but that’s the one that needs to get paid and that’s the one that I’ve seen the most stress comes from because there was no intentionality and placed. You must be intentional about your budgeting and your organization. And again, those are the two core competencies. There are two main things that I would tell a new entrepreneur to focus on, know where your money is going.

Christine Schlonski [10:51]
Yeah, that makes life easier. What would you say just maybe like a rough estimate, what can or what should be people putting aside from a percentage of what comes in, so they don’t get into trouble at a later point?

Matthew Marcoux [11:06]
Yeah, so I have two savings, oh, three savings accounts as part of my business. So Candorpath Financial has our core checking account. And then we have actually three different savings accounts. And they have three distinct purposes. One is to escrow for the taxes. So making sure that we know a pro forma return, how much is going to be due, paying them quarterly, and then whatever the balance will be at the compile time, March or April depending on what type of business you’ve created. So that’s the first account that we have set up. The second is that 10%, any income we have, 10% of it, we make sure we throw into this bucket and that way that serves as our emergency savings, the crud really starts to hit the fan, we know that we can dip into that and do pretty much anything we need to float us for a couple of months. The other bucket of money we have, as I mentioned is those large annual expenses. We have a number of licensing and fees and those just come up once or twice a year. And so for us to be able to escrow monthly for those expenses, and when they hit, we can just slide that money over from our savings account to our checking, pay that large expense and not feel that large financial burden. And so again, if someone’s listening to this, kind of think about it that way, most banks these days, you can have as many savings accounts as you want. So really creating this bucket system of making sure that when $1 comes in, we know how much needs to go into each one of those three buckets so that we have a very few surprises when it comes to our budget.

Christine Schlonski [12:33]
Yeah. There’s a saying that goes, “Well, pay yourself first.” What does that mean for you?

Matthew Marcoux [12:43]
Paying myself first means after those three buckets are filled up and the expenses, actually we pay ourselves last. Let’s be honest, I mean —

Christine Schlonski [12:52]
That’s the other order. It took me so long to understand the system and sometimes I’m good at it, sometimes I totally suck. But yeah, tell us a little bit about from the, you know, the look, the feel of somebody who knows about finances.

Matthew Marcoux [13:13]
Yeah, yeah. I think with pay yourself first is really meant to think about before you scale your business up, make sure that you have enough to live off of and that this is sustainable. So I think that’s probably more where that phrase comes into play is once again, before you start adding new employees, maybe making those large purchases, make sure you’ve established for yourself a fair and reasonable salary. And both, John, my business partner and I have a fair and reasonable salary that we pay ourselves from our business. At the end of it, we can decide whether we’re going to use whatever’s leftover to hire a new employee or to scale or to have another outsourcing partner, whether we’re going to take it out in the form of profits, or whether we’re going to buy a new piece of equipment or computer for our business. So I think that’s really where that comes into play is, paying yourself first is making sure you’ve set yourself a fair and reasonable salary because you can’t continue to do this unless you’re deriving revenue. And so again, once those bills are paid, that is necessary, you know, figuring out what’s leftover and then determining from there, what you’re going to do with that. You gotta have a roof over your head food. So you got to make sure you’re paying yourself first when it comes to, to a business.

Christine Schlonski [14:26]
Yeah, yeah. And you know, so many people pay themselves last, or they don’t pay themselves at all, which is not really sustainable for a long time. I personally believe that there are periods when you really have to hustle a little bit more, to maybe set up a new project or to go into a new market or whatever you want to accomplish. But like long term, you should have a business that supports your lifestyle, that supports your level of happiness and contentment, and the impact you want to make in the world, and instead of just working or creating a job for yourself.

Matthew Marcoux [15:07]
Absolutely, yes. The whole point of being an entrepreneur, in my opinion, is to have that freedom and flexibility. And part of that is both come with pros and cons. Some of those cons are, as you mentioned, we hustle, we do what we have to do to get the job done. But yeah, this isn’t a business unless you’re able to live on what you’re making. And that doesn’t mean at the beginning, I wasn’t working three jobs to do what I was doing. I didn’t make enough to live off of at the beginning. I worked three jobs, I Valley cars, I worked for a reservation company, I sold some health insurance and some ancillary types of things. But I did what I had to do and as the income begins to rise, I kept falling off those additional jobs, making sure I was able to sustain my lifestyle and wasn’t able to really grow and expand until and this was also in the early 2000s when a lot of this technology wasn’t present whereas today. I’d say that that was also a big part of it as technology has helped us close the gap. And again, make some of these things that we need more affordable than in the past where you really had to hire human capital for a lot of these types of tasks. So yeah, I totally agree.

Christine Schlonski [16:16]
Yeah, just coming back to your example of, you know, booking appointments. Now you can have Calendly, I think it’s like 80 bucks a year or something.

Matthew Marcoux [16:27]
Just the numbers, because I was paying, we were paying an office administrator, I don’t know, maybe $50,000 a year, $35,000, maybe in salary, plus all of the benefits that go into and the taxes that are paid at the end of it’s about 50,000. We looked at it again, when we were able to hit this reset button and said, “What can we do with $50,000? Well, we can hire a lot of outsourced partners with that same dollar amount, yet those people are experts in those areas.” A great example, we didn’t have this opportunity in 2000. But now in the year that we’re in 2020, there are so many great technologies out there that are saving us a ton of money get providing us exactly what we need.

Christine Schlonski [17:13]
Yeah. And thank God that is technology. And it’s evolving and making the entrepreneur’s life much easier. And I think it’s really brilliant, instead of having somebody to set your appointments, especially, with all the different time zones if you work internationally. Before I have my calendar, oftentimes, especially one country’s going to wintertime the other one isn’t and everything gets like mixed up. It’s not a good feeling.

Matthew Marcoux [17:45]
No, not at all. Yes. You never know what time zone you’re in or where you’re at, and I get all those problems.

Christine Schlonski [17:51]
Yeah. You don’t want to figure it out. You just need to send you a link for like 80 to 100 bucks a year. I think that’s pretty brilliant. You never miss a meeting. Plus, you can send reminders and you don’t even need a human, which would probably be much more if you just look at the plane cost.

Matthew Marcoux [18:09]
Absolutely. Yeah.

Christine Schlonski [18:11]
Great. So what is kind of maybe the parting advice you would love to leave us with?

Matthew Marcoux [18:17]
Yeah, so really two things are, especially for all the listeners out there, the first is really kind of thinking the process of, instead of hiring within first looking to see what can be outsourced what can be used with some of these partners that we’ve hooked up with. And so again, it’s building your business smarter. What are the best ways to do that some things that we love to think about. And the second is, once you’ve had and created that business, making sure that you are managing the financial side of it in the most efficient manner possible. And again, that’s either through using savings accounts and budgeting, organizing cash flow, there’s actually a lot of resources out there for you to be able to use to make sure your businesses running in the most efficient manner possible. Those are the two areas that I think we’re most passionate about.

Christine Schlonski [19:03]
Yeah, yeah. I think it’s so important, especially the finance part, you can focus on growing your business. But you also have to focus on what piece Do you get to keep is even more important, because you know, you can hit those big numbers. And I talked to entrepreneurs, oftentimes, who have managed to level up yet another level and you know, they’re making their seven figures or even beyond, but then at the end of the day, there’s even less than their pockets.

Matthew Marcoux [19:30]
Yeah, or they’re working 80 hours a week to do that. And if they have a family or their passions or someplace else, that’s only sustainable for so long. And so again, what I think is, by using some of these tools, it lengthens that runway that you have so that you don’t get burnt out on your business. I mean, your business needs you to survive. And if you are not in the most healthy either mindsets or physical health, it’s going to suffer and so these are some of the areas that you can use to make sure that you are enjoying and loving what you do and not have to do those tasks that you absolutely can’t stand or just not good at. There are other ways to do those.

Christine Schlonski [20:08]
Yeah, it’s not just kind of a waste of time, but it’s also wasted energy and waste and joy that you don’t experience by doing something you can’t stand. But you need to do for your business, right? So for me, it’s definitely all the bookkeeping stuff like, “Oh, no, I definitely have somebody doing it.” Because of all the worries I want to pull my hair out, hair or moments. They are just not good. And you show up in a different way in the world if you variable stuff like this. So you brought us a wonderful resource interview questions to ask the right questions when hiring a financial planner and you also have somebody available, like a part-time CFO.

Matthew Marcoux [20:52]
Yes, CFO.

Christine Schlonski [20:54]
Tell us a little bit about it.

Matthew Marcoux [20:56]
Yeah. So you know, really two things are if we’re going to continue talking about scaling and outsourcing, one of the areas is helping to outsource your finances. So having someone that holds you, that you are holding you accountable to make sure that the finances of the business are moving in the direction that it needs to. I feel like it’s just one of those costs that you need to be born at some point. And so, if you’re going to hire a financial advisor, on our website, http://www.candorpath.com/interview/, there are some really great questions. It’s a PDF document. So know what questions should you be asking the financial advisor that you’re interviewing to make sure you hit on really kind of the areas that are important. And the second is, if you’re in that small to medium-sized business, you’re starting to have some questions about financial statements or auditing, or looking maybe to sell and do something else. Really having that CFO on hand is important. But not all of us can afford to have a Chief Financial Officer in the house. And so what we’ve decided to get back to this whole movement is that we have a CFO who was on staff at our firm His job is to be a fractional CFO to come into your business, on an hourly basis, figure out where are the areas that you’re struggling with, service that CFO. And then once you’re done or once the problem has been solved, or maybe you get to a point where you want to bring someone in full time, you now have everything in an organized manner. And so those are the really the two ways that we love helping other entrepreneurs out.

Christine Schlonski [22:23]
Awesome. Well, thank you so, so much for sharing your wisdom. Do you have a quote you want to leave us with?

Matthew Marcoux [22:30]
Oh, my goodness, Christine. First of all, thank you very much for having me here. I can’t think of a quote off the top of my head. But all I do know is that making sure that you do what you love to do, and whatever that happens to be. Just make sure your passion follow your heart, and I think you’ll be successful.

Christine Schlonski [22:54]
Yeah, I love that. Follow your heart. Definitely simple, happy people make people happy. So just make sure you are happy yourself. Thank you so, so much for sharing these insights. They’re so crucial to entrepreneurship to really understand the financial pieces and how to handle them and how to make sure you get more joy out of the day, out what you’re doing, how you can outsource in a way that feels much lighter. You don’t need to hire a $50,000 person a year. There are so many other ways where people really enjoy what you don’t like doing. And so take advantage of that and really focus on what you’re brilliant at so your day has done many more hours in the day because it just feels different. So thank you so much, Matt, for having been here. And yeah, have a wonderful day.

Matthew Marcoux [23:50]
Thank you so much. Have a great day.

Christine Schlonski [23:52]
Well, I hope that this episode was helpful for you gorgeous. That you are really taking some of the things we talked about and put it into action. Hop on over to https://christineschlonski.com/. And find the podcast tab, find the episode number 193. And there you have the wonderful resource that Matt is providing the important and difficult questions to ask your advisor so that you are set up to really have an advisor who can support you in the best way. And you know exactly what is going on. Obviously, all the links to Matt are right on this page, as well as the show notes and the transcript. And if you’re over there at https://christineschlonski.com/ and you found the podcast tab as well. Make sure you sign up for the empowerment notes. This is empowerment right into your inbox, where I share all the updates about Heart Sells! Podcast, as well as things that I usually do not share on social media. But I do share with my tribe. So thank you so much for being here. Have a wonderful day wherever you are in this beautiful world and I’m saying bye for now.

 

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