Are you looking to dive into a career in finance or perhaps expand your current business? According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, employment in business and financial careers is projected to grow eight percent by 2030. When it comes to job security, going into finance may be a good bet. People need money to prosper, and the savvy ones know that hiring a professional to help manage their wealth or company books is the best way to be financially secure.
Being a financial advisor can be a very satisfying profession. You can assist families, small businesses, and individuals in utilizing their resources for the most significant financial gain. Growing relationships with your clients and watching them use your professional advice to flourish can be a rewarding and lucrative experience, especially if you can figure out the best places for financial advisors to work.
Being a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is also a great path to take. You may be one of the most important assets to start-ups, LLCs, or self-employed entrepreneurs when it comes to getting the most return on their taxes and being able to invest it back into their businesses.
But in the financial world, location matters. To become number one in your field and grow a successful business, you need to know where to start.
Here are seven of the best cities for financial advisors and CPAs.
1. New York, New York
If you’re part of the financial world, this will come as no surprise. New York City features the financial district, home to Wall Street and countless financial firms. The city lives and breathes money. If you’re looking to jump head-first into the industry and potentially pick up some very important clients, New York City is one of the best places for accounting jobs.
According to Indeed, the average salary of a financial advisor in the Big Apple is around $83,000, with the average of around $35,000 a year of additional income from commission. But like many other careers in the “City That Never Sleeps,” if you make connections with the right people, that average can skyrocket. You can be a great asset to the vast number of people in the city needing tax help and financial planning services.
As you may have imagined, your competition will be high. While no degree is technically required to be a financial advisor, you can become a certified financial planner. You’ll most likely need a bachelor’s degree in finance, but obtaining a master’s degree in finance is optimal to reel in those big clients.
To become licensed as a CPA, even more is required. You’ll need 150 education hours, you need to be at least 21 years old, and you’ll need to pass the AICPA Ethics Exam. It sounds like a lot of work, but the rewards are worth it. According to Salary.com, the average salary of a CPA in New York city is between $85,000 and $555,000, so it’s all about that hustle. This makes New York City one of the top-paying cities for accountants.
Secure a great virtual address for your business with a low amount of overhead by using a New York City virtual office.
2. Denver, Colorado
Denver is a great place to be if you’re in the financial industry. The Mile-High City is an up-and-coming tech hub and a beacon for start-ups and big businesses alike because of the state’s business-friendly tax rates. That means accountants and financial advisors are in demand.
If you’re a financial advisor, you’re in luck. Denver is in the top 10 cities with the highest median household incomes.
What does that mean for your financial planning business?
Well, where there is wealth, there is the need to grow it. Though you don’t need to be wealthy to use a financial planner, having some money to invest is key. As a financial planner in Denver, you can play a vital role in helping households plan for their futures—and you can make around $74,000 while you’re at it.
Denver is also one of the best cities for accountants because of the number of large businesses needing accounting help and the number of self-employed workers. The Denver metro area, which also includes Aurora and Lakewood, ranks ninth on Hire A Helper’s list of large metros with the most self-employed workers.
According to this list, which gathered U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics data, about 10 percent of workers in the area are self-employed. These workers often encounter more complex tax situations, so you’ll have access to a large pool of people needing tax and accounting help. According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary of a CPA in Denver is around $65,000.
It’s also fairly easy to obtain your CPA license in Colorado. You only need one year of work experience prior to becoming licensed, plus 150 education hours. You don’t have to be an American citizen or even a resident of Colorado.
Ready to set up your business in Denver? Alliance has a variety of Denver virtual offices to choose from, so you can have meeting space when needed and use a professional business address to register your LLC.
3. Fort Myers, Florida
Sunshine, white sand beaches, palm tree-lined streets. There’s a lot to love about Florida. But the Sunshine State is also a great place to grow your financial business. It’s one of the best cities for financial advisors and CPAs alike.
Many retirees are moving to Fort Myers for the warm sunshine, relaxed atmosphere, and lower cost of living than other cities in Florida. Retirees want to make sure their income can last, so they often seek professional help to strategize the best way to make that happen. That’s where financial advisers come in. Position your business services in Fort Myers to leverage the demand of retired residents. What’s more, financial advisers can bring in around $120,000 annually.
Alliance has affordable meeting rooms in Fort Myers for booking sessions with clients. Utilize our Live Receptionist services to provide a seamless, professional call experience for your current and prospective customers.
4. Atlanta, Georgia
Atlanta is a Southern hub for barbecue, arts and culture, and finance. It serves as headquarters for the “Big Four,” or the four largest firms globally to provide auditing, tax, and consulting services to companies. This makes it one of the best cities for accounting graduates since landing a job at or doing contract work for one of these prestigious establishments can significantly boost your career and your business.
Atlanta is also home to major companies such as Georgia-Pacific, Delta Airlines, Home Depot, and, of course, Coca-Cola, to name a few. All of these major corporations need reliable financial associates.
If you want to obtain your CPA license in Georgia, the good news is that it’s relatively easy to do so. Do you have an active license in another state and hope to expand your accounting services to Atlanta? No problem. You can apply for a reciprocal license—but you must meet Georgia’s educational requirements. If you’re applying for a CPA license for the first time, the exam and licensing requirements here are similar to other states (bachelor’s degree, work experience, etc.), but you must be a U.S. citizen.
Atlanta is also one of the best cities for financial advisors. The television and film industry is booming in Atlanta due to tax incentives, which means many employees with potentially high salaries that may need investing. Your financial advising services may also be in high demand from local families. According to Bloomberg, about 30 percent of Atlanta households have children, meaning that parents are looking for businesses like yours to help set up college funds and other ways to invest in their kids’ futures.
5. Chicago, Illinois
When you think of Chicago, The Bean, Willis Tower, and deep-dish pizza may be the first things that come to mind. But there are many more reasons why people move to and start businesses in this lakefront city. Chicago has a booming economy and countless opportunities for your financial services business to grow. That’s why we’ve named Chicago as one of the best cities for accountants and financial advisors.
Forbes ranked Chi-Town in the top 25 cities for small business growth. When small companies are gaining their footing, financial advisors and accountants are often needed to guide the business in responsible financial growth. That’s where you come in. Book a meeting room in Chicago to meet with clients in a professional space. If you’re running your business in the city but don’t live here, no problem. Maintain a local presence in the Windy City with a Chicago virtual office.
Chicago is one of the best places for financial advisors to work because of its high percentage of families with children (Source: Bloomberg), 23 percent of its population nearing retirement age, and almost 10 percent of households bringing in more than $200,000 annually. Your services are needed to help these groups invest in their financial futures. According to ZipRecruiter, top earners in the financial advising sector can make about $100,000 per year, a healthy salary in Chicago.
Check out our guide to working in Chicago.
6. Scottsdale, Arizona
Scottsdale, a desert community northeast of Phoenix, is one of the best places for accounting jobs and financial advising jobs alike. Not only is Scottsdale a popular spot for retirees to move, but it’s also strategically situated near one of the fastest-growing cities in the U.S.
Major companies and families alike are flocking to this sun-soaked valley, wanting to escape the high cost of living and taxes of other states. Large companies in various industries continue to relocate to the Phoenix metro area, creating jobs, revenue, and opportunities for accountants to expand their tax management and consulting services. Consider expanding or relocating your accounting business here to take advantage of the incredible growth in the Scottsdale-Phoenix area.
Your financial advising services will also be in high demand, as more than 30 percent of Phoenix metro households have children (Source: Bloomberg). Retirees and families with kids often rely on the professional advice of a financial advisor to plan for their futures.
Settle your small firm in Scottsdale with a virtual office and start growing your business today.
7. Fort Worth, Texas
Though still connected to its honky-tonk roots, Fort Worth continues to set itself on the financial map. It’s considered one of the best places for accounting jobs due to the high volume of both large and small businesses alike. The Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex is home to major companies like Comerica Incorporated, Santander Consumer USA, and MoneyGram International.
Big business also seems to be attracting the very wealthy. According to Culture Map, the Dallas-Fort Worth area saw the biggest spike in the uber-rich (individuals with a net worth between $5 million and $30 million) between 2018 and 2019—making it one of the top 10 global regions to serve as the home for millionaires in this salary bracket. The draw could be because Texas residents don’t pay income tax, or maybe it’s because of the delicious Tex-Mex and Frito Pies. We may never know for sure. What we do know is this is good news for CPAs and financial advisors wanting to extend their tax and wealth management services to the Fort Worth area.
(Note that to be licensed as a CPA, Texas does require a background check and a passing grade on the AICPA Ethics Exam—plus work experience and continuing education.)
Fort Worth is also very family-oriented, with various museums, 300 parks and public spaces, and the nearby Dallas Zoo. So, it’s no surprise that Fort Worth has second-highest share of households with children among large U.S. cities (Source: Bloomberg). This means that Fort Worth is an excellent place for your financial advising services to assist families in planning for the future.
When you’re ready to set up shop in Fort Worth, Alliance has you covered with your pick of professional virtual offices.
So, where is the best place to work as an accountant or financial advisor? Use this list to help set up or expand your business to a locale full of career-boosting opportunities.
Let Alliance Virtual Offices help to grow your business flexibly. If you need to travel frequently or want a professional meeting place without the hassle of renting or owning office space, Alliance is the service you need. We can help you get your business off the ground and set you up in some of the best cities for accountants and financial advisors.
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