Juan G. HernandezAriano
Juan appears in the Top 100
People in Finance Magazine
Juan G. HernandezAriano, CFP®, CSLP®
Juan G. HernandezAriano, CFP®, CSLP®, firmly believes that every goal can be accomplished, and that nothing is impossible with the right plan in place. From paying for college to saving for retirement, his strategies meet clients where they are and take them where they want to go. Juan draws upon a wealth of professional experience—having held roles as a financial analyst, tax preparer, insurance agent, and investment manager—and, in 2016, he became founder of WealthCreate Financial. Headquartered in downtown Houston, Texas, the financial services company works with hundreds of clients from coast to coast, putting heart into the numbers and making dreams come true. By getting to know their clients and learning exactly what they hope to achieve, WealthCreate takes a personal CFO approach, analyzing options and providing comprehensive financial plans that transform aspirations into reality.
Juan and his team specialize in wealth management, comprehensive financial planning, late-stage college planning, and retirement planning. Working side-by-side with clients throughout the process, they supervise, coordinate, and connect the dots across all key areas, using educating and coaching to help them reach their goals faster and more effectively. As a subject matter expert on taxes, college planning, cash flow planning, and more, Juan is frequently sought after and has been quoted by several major media outlets including Bloomberg, CBS, Investment News, Market Watch, and Telemundo.
We recently had the opportunity to speak with him to learn more about his role at WealthCreate, personal CFO approach, and passion for community outreach.
Having been a part of the financial industry since 2009, what inspired you to start your own company?
WealthCreate Financial was started with the goal of changing the industry itself in any way, shape, or form for the client. I never agreed on the approach that the financial industry had with managing wealth and truly believe there’s always a different way to do things. There’s also a great deal to explore in this field, as far as education. So, I wanted to create something that could change people’s lives. I’d always dreamed of a personal CFO model, and I wanted to be as comprehensive as possible—to be the equivalent of a doctor within the financial industry.
Could you tell us a bit more about how the personal CFO model works?
Yes, of course. Our approach is very different from that of an average financial advisor because we use education and goals in addition to the numbers. We don’t want clients to see us as their investment or wealth managers, especially in the age of algorithms when anyone can manage money—including robots and AI. Instead, our main priorities are the goals and dreams of our clients. Therefore, the first step in our personal CFO model involves learning what the families want to achieve. Then, based upon those findings, we lay out a plan to move from point A to point B. Essentially, we become each client’s right hand, analyzing all the options and numbers.
How does education play a role in your approach?
We work to educate our clients and the community so that they not only understand what we’re doing for them but also why we are doing them. By putting each client into the position of CEO, we play the part of CFO and ultimately get them where they want to be. We try to stay ahead of everything that may come our clients’ way, such as college planning. When parents have kids in high school, we help them find ways to pay for college without digging into their retirements or incurring debt. We also help clients manage their money and tackle retirement in the most efficient way.
Are college and retirement planning your main niches?
Yes. Parents of children in high school frequently come to us worried about how they’re going to pay for college. We also serve families who are getting close to retirement because most aren’t sure if they’re doing the right things. All of our relationships are built on long-term goals, and many of our clients have been with us from the beginning. Even though there is no commitment contract, they have chosen to stay with us, which is the greatest compliment we could receive.
You’re clearly passionate about helping clients as well as the community. What other types of volunteer work and community outreach do you do?
I’ve always been extremely involved in the pro bono arena, and I currently hold a board position as president of the Financial Planning Association of Houston—a nonprofit professional association that brings financial planners together. I also present at educational seminars and conferences across the country, addressing college financial planning and financial planning in general. Although my main base is in Houston, TX, I’ve held these in Chicago, IL; Minneapolis, MN; Cincinnati, OH; Oklahoma City, OK; San Antonio and Dallas, TX. It’s truly an honor to be in a position that allows me to help people in ways that make real differences in their lives.
Juan is a graduate of Universidad Autonoma de Bucaramanga in Colombia, where he earned a degree in financial engineering (Bachelor of Science in financial management). He is also a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) from Rice University and a Certified Student Loan Professional (CSLP®) from Humboldt State University. He’s currently an active member of the Financial Planning Association (FPA) and the National Ethics Association.
Juan G. HernandezAriano, CFP®, CSLP®
440 Louisiana Street #900, Houston, TX 77002