As I prepare to move back into the retail space and begin working with clients again after 10 years in house with Tarkenton Financial, the realities of selling FIAs and life insurance in 2015 and beyond have become clear…I feel strongly that I need a securities license to effectively work with clients. In our ever increasing regulatory world, discussing rebalancing a client’s portfolio from mutual funds or stocks into “safe money” alternatives strongly suggests a Series 65 license. I could, of course, decide to obtain a Series 6 or 7 in the future, but as my focus will be on FIAs and life insurance, the need to be able to sell variables and trade stocks doesn’t resonate with me at this time. I also like the idea of less B/D regulation over the products that I am allowed to sell…a bonus of the structure I have chosen.

At Tarkenton Financial we have partnered with TesTeachers to provide educational materials for obtaining your life insurance or Series 65 license, and I thought the class I took prepared me well. The Series 65 test has been referred to as a “bear” of a test and I must agree…it is a comprehensive test to say the least!  The breadth of topics and amount of detailed material you must know for this test might seem daunting at times, but the overall education received is worth it.

TesTeachers outlines a 14-day study plan with 3 hours a day devoted to study and watching classroom videos, but my advice is to double that time as you prepare.  Print out the materials or purchase the book and highlight as you read. Watch the videos and pause or go back over issues you do not understand.  Take the practice tests until you reach 90% proficiency and then review all you have learned before attempting the practice exams at the end of the course.  Please believe me when I emphasize working to 90% proficiency before taking your official exam at the testing center as there will be topics on the exam you have never seen. I know that sounds crazy but it’s real, so know your material really well and you will pass!

The bottom line is, if you’ve been thinking about getting your Series 65, now is a great time to do it, and I believe that ultimately it will help you to run a more comprehensive and more successful financial practice. Don’t forget that Tarkenton Financial has the resources to help you!

I am now in the process of setting up my new license with our partners at Brookstone Capital and will address this process in a future blog. Stay tuned!

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