Not every client has ample assets to manage. Business owners, for instance, may have wealth, income and pressing needs for financial advice — but they also might have most of that wealth tied up in their company. Other prime prospects could own illiquid assets rather than traded securities. Nevertheless, advisers can serve such individuals and their families while getting reasonable compensation for doing so.

If collecting fees for handling assets under management isn’t feasible, how can advisers be compensated? “We work mainly with family business owners,” says Gary Pittsford, CEO at Castle Wealth Advisors in Indianapolis. “Also, some clients’ assets are largely investment property or stock options. In many of those cases, we get paid by a quarterly retainer.”

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