Fee-only planners who are members of the XY Planning Network — as well as aspiring planners outside the network from diverse backgrounds — can now apply for a chance to take the CFP examination for free.

The network, composed of fee-only advisors who serve Gen X and Gen Y clients, will offer 10 scholarships per exam cycle to cover the $695 fee. Half of the scholarships will go to Network members and half are open to members and non-members from under-represented groups. Those who meet the CFP Board’s education coursework requirement and who plan to take the CFP exam for the first time may apply.

Industry guru Michael Kitces, who, along with his business partner Alan Moore, addressed a standing room only crowd at TD Ameritrade's annual conference. Image: LILA Photo for TD Ameritrade Institutional
Industry guru Michael Kitces, left, pictured with business partner Alan Moore. LILA Photo for TD Ameritrade Institutional


“Our mission at XYPN is to bring real financial planning to Gen X and Gen Y clients by a competent, fiduciary financial planner, as embodied by the Certified Financial Planner designation,” Michael Kitces, co-founder of the network and a frequent contributor to Financial Planning, said in a statement. “Offering XYPN members an opportunity to take the CFP exam at no cost is a reflection of XYPN’s commitment to the success of both its member-advisors and their clients.”

Non-members may apply for the five scholarships designated for women, minorities, people with disabilities and members of the LGBTQ+ community. The network's diversity committee is accepting submissions in this category from both members and non-members.

“It’s essential that more financial professionals from Generations X and Y earn CFP certification to help meet the growing demand for personal financial advice,” CFP Board CEO Kevin Keller said in a statement. “We very much appreciate the support from XYPN to encourage their members to work toward the certification and their support for increasing the diversity of CFP professionals.”

The exam is administered three times a year in March, July and November. The next CFP exam period runs from July 10 to 17. The deadline to apply is June 26.

For more information on the scholarship program, head to the XY site.

Sean McCabe

Sean McCabe

Sean McCabe is a senior editor with Accounting Today.