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How Much Do Paraplanners Make?

Money talks, doesn’t it? We are in the money business after all!

If there’s something I wish I would have been more conscious about towards the end of high school, it would have been career research, including research on pay and salary. But I was a musician who wanted to be a “rock star!” Living the dream instead of being able to pay the bills, all the way! *cries in millennial*

I felt it would have been too easy and simple to tell you paraplanners make X amount a year and calling it a day. Instead, I did a bit of research to compare paraplanning salary to similar jobs within the industry, and other common jobs outside of the financial industry.

The average salary in California for paraplanners according to is $62,491, which roughly translates to $26.84 hourly. In the US, the average yearly pay is $49,460, or $21.24 hourly[1].

According to, in the US, an entry-level paraplanner makes about $42k a year or $17.79 hourly, while a mid-level or experienced paraplanner makes about $53k a year or $23.19. Here’s something interesting; compensation peaks with around 10 to 19 years of experience, with a salary of $59k or $23.24 hourly, before dipping back to $53k[2].

How do paraplanners compare to insurance agents? This might be a bit tricky, as insurance agents may be paid mostly through commissions. Agents pay ranges from $34k a year all the way to $48k, according to PayScale[3].

I mentioned paralegals in the first blog. How much do they make? PayScale tells us that their pay ranges from $40k to $60k annually in the US[4], whereas narrows it down to an average of $62k in California[5].

Different sources tell us different numbers, but overall, it appears being a paraplanner is a great entry-level type of profession. As paraplanners get seasoned, they can get appropriate licensing to move up to roles like junior financial advisor, financial planner, or they can move up to a supervisory role for paraplanners and/or other planners.

In the end, what do these numbers tell us? If financial advising or financial planning seems too daunting to jump in right away, paraplanning is a great way to get started in the financial planning industry while earning a living. It equips you with skills that will be valuable for your next endeavor.

On the next blog, I’ll be covering when should an advisor or financial planner hire a paraplanner. Make sure to check it out!


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