Solo Wealth Advisor Successfully Sells Practice to Mariner Wealth Advisors

October 7, 2022

Wealth Advisor Snapshot

Wayne Van Huelven advisor

Wealth Advisor Establishes Succession Plan to Ensure Service Continuity for His Clients

Wealth advisor Wayne Van Heuvelen built a successful financial planning practice over 24 years. With a primary focus on investments, he created long-term relationships and trust with his clients. As a solo practitioner ready to retire, he realized he needed a succession plan to help ensure continued, seamless service for his clients.

“I had worked with some of my clients for decades, so they were more than clients—they were friends,” Van Heuvelen said. “As many of them were close to retirement or retired, they needed more help than ever. I wanted a firm that could walk alongside them as they faced issues like tax and estate planning.”


Wayne Van Heuvelen

Wealth Advisor

Challenges Van Heuvelen Faced

  • Van Heuvelen was ready to retire but didn’t have a succession plan.
  • Because he was a sole practitioner, there wasn’t a second generation of advisors who could continue to provide service to his longtime clients. In addition, he didn’t want to transition his clients to another sole practitioner, which could require yet another change in the future when that advisor retired.
  • With clients across the U.S., he needed to find an advisory firm with a national presence.
  • He wanted to ensure his clients would receive the same level of service they were accustomed to plus be able to take advantage of additional wealth management services such as tax and estate planning.

How Van Heuvelen Approached Succession Planning

As he sought advice for who to partner with on a succession plan, his custodian recommended a national wealth advisory firm that they believed would be a good fit for his clients.

Why Mariner Wealth Advisors

  • Van Heuvelen ultimately chose to sell his book of business to Mariner Wealth Advisors because we had a shared investment philosophy—striving to produce the highest returns with the least amount of risk.
  • He was familiar with and respected the reputation of one of the advisors who would be working with his clients.
  • He also liked Mariner Wealth Advisors’ national reputation as a top-ranked firm by Barron’s1 and believed that credibility would be important to his clients.
  • As an added benefit, he knew his clients would receive comprehensive wealth management services in addition to portfolio management.
  • He also appreciated that Mariner Wealth Advisors worked in teams, which would provide his clients with greater stability.
Shea Mears quote success story

Our Approach to Succession Planning

It takes time for clients to build trust with a new wealth advisory firm and advisor. It also takes trust for an established advisor to transition longtime clients to a new wealth advisory firm. Building on that knowledge, Mariner Wealth Advisors took a relationship-first approach with Van Heuvelen’s clients. It was important to us that each client have a good understanding of Mariner Wealth Advisors, our guiding philosophies and our offering.

  • Van Heuvelen’s clients were located across the country including Washington, Arizona and Illinois. Our wealth advisors met with each one face to face to begin to build trust.
  • According to Van Heuvelen, the fact that Mariner Wealth Advisors has local offices across the U.S. and clients in all 50 states gave him the confidence that the firm would be well-positioned to take care of all his clients.
  • To avoid extreme changes immediately, our firm took time to get to know Van Heuvelen’s clients’ investment goals and risk tolerance and then gradually made portfolio recommendations.
  • In addition to offering investment advice, as a full-service wealth management firm, Mariner Wealth Advisors was able to deliver a suite of services to Van Heuvelen’s clients, including tax planning & preparation, estate planning, trust services, insurance solutions and retirement planning.

1Top RIA Firms: Barron’s awarded 2022, 2021, and 2020 #5, 2019 #4, and 2018 #3 rankings to Mariner Wealth Advisors (MWA) based on data compiled for MWA and the 2017 #2 and 2016 #1 rankings to Mariner Holdings (MH) based upon data compiled for MH registered investment adviser subsidiaries. Rankings for 2016 through 2022 were published in September of each award year and were based on June 30th data, including annual figures for the previous three years. The ranking is based on assets managed by the firms, technology spending, staff diversity, succession planning, and other metrics. The number of firms included in the rankings was: 20 (2016), 30 (2017), 40 (2018), 50 (2019), and 100 (2020 – 2022). The published rankings are based on firm surveys, and the firm’s filings with the regulatory databases were used to cross-check the data provided. The formula Barron’s uses to rank advisors is proprietary. The ranking is not indicative of future performance, and there is no guarantee of future success. For additional information, visit

The views expressed are for commentary purposes only and do not take into account any individual personal, financial, legal or tax considerations. As such, the information contained herein is not intended to be personal legal, investment or tax advice. Nothing herein should be relied upon as such, and there is no guarantee that any claims made will come to pass. The opinions are based on information and sources of information deemed to be reliable, but Mariner Wealth Advisors does not warrant the accuracy of the information.

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Mariner Wealth Advisors (“MWA”) does not provide all services mentioned. Some services are provided by affiliates and are subject to additional fees. Previous results or outcomes experienced by advisors/clients are unique to those situations and there is no guarantee of similar results or outcomes.

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