billnelson-aboutHi, I'm Bill Nelson.

I founded Pacesetter Planning to exclusively help engaged and newlywed couples get their finances in order and set the pace for the rest of their lives.

As scary as it is to admit, most of the biggest financial events of our lives happen in our 20s and 30s, and particularly when we get married. You either decide to go to grad school or take the first steps down a career path. You change jobs, earn promotions, or negotiate raises. You decide how much to start putting into a 401(k) and how to handle your student loans.  You decide whether, and to what extent, you should integrate your finances with your spouse.  Behind the scenes, you lay the building blocks of your credit score.  You decide when it makes sense to buy your first home, and how to go about doing so. You may even be financially preparing to have children. I know this, because I’ve through all of these decisions and milestones myself.

Making good financial decisions is challenging enough by yourself.  When you add a spouse or fiance to the mix, trying to juggle these decisions becomes even more complicated.

Compounding the problem, of course, is that no one ever taught us about money in school. We graduated high school knowing trigonometry, but not knowing how to set a budget or the basics of investing in the stock market. In many ways, we have significantly greater financial challenges ahead of us than our parents or grandparents.

Despite the challenges and decisions we face in our 20s and 30s, most big financial planning firms primarily focus on working with people who are either about to retire, or have a few hundred thousand dollars lying around to invest.  That’s why I founded Pacesetter Planning - to help couples in my generation make good decisions to both reach these goals and to use money as a tool, not an outcome, to live the life of their dreams.

I help engaged and newlywed millennials all across the country learn how to manage money together in a way that doesn't just help them accomplish their financial goals - it also helps them strengthen their marriage.

I'm a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional, a Certified Financial Therapist-Level I™ Practitioner, and a Certified Student Loan Professional. Unlike most "financial advisors" out there,

  • I specialize in the financial issues that are most important to engaged and newlywed couples - ranging from helping navigate the emotional issues around money that most couples experience, to the intricacies of student loan planning. Most people in my industry specialize in working with people in or near retirement - and many won't even meet with you if you don't have a half million dollars to invest. I'd much rather help you become wealthy - together - than work with you just because you're already wealthy.
  • I don't get paid by insurance companies or mutual funds to sell you their products. As a "fee-only" financial planner, my only source of income is from my clients directly. This helps minimize the conflicts of interest in our relationship and put us on the "same side of the table" to help you build your wealth.
  • I am legally obligated to put your interests ahead of my own. It's a novel concept, I know, but it's sadly not a requirement for most firms in my industry. But, this principle is so important to me, I put it in writing - check it out!

I hold all of my client meetings via video conference, so you can meet with me from the comfort of your home, no matter where you live. If you’re interested in learning more, schedule a free breakthrough call where we will talk through your biggest financial goals, identify the obstacles in your way, and lay the groundwork for how we can help you use your finances to create the life you love - together.

When I’m not working with my clients, you can find me playing my saxophone, running along the trails near our home in northern Virginia, cheering on my alma mater (Go Hoyas!), going on an adventure with my wife Mary Kathryn and my daughter Emma.