Difficulty of finding a finance job in a non-finance city suburb after banking

FinancialPlnr's picture
Rank: Monkey | 59

I wanted to get opinions from those who have worked in finance. I will be starting out in banking in a city with a lot of finance culture but honestly have no desire to live in a major city forever (I come from a small town). I hope to live in the southwest somewhere anywhere between LA and Houston in a suburban area. For someone who starts in banking how difficult is it to find a finance job that will allow you to live in a suburb in Scottsdale, Glendale, Phoenix, Austin, Dallas, San Diego etc.

My main focus isn't money so any job that will allow me to support a family and have a home in these areas (Thinking around 150-250k by age 35-40) is what I consider solid. Of course, I wouldn't turn down more. Also, what kind of jobs would I be looking at. It seems there isn't a set path as not many people express interest in what I am aiming for.

Comments (36)

Oct 21, 2018

Interested in the same...

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Oct 21, 2018

Really hoping to figure this out before I become too entrenched in one area and can't move away. What region are looking to get to?

Oct 21, 2018

Bumping

Oct 22, 2018

Sounds like private wealth management could be a good path for you. Several BB's have wealth management offices in smaller cities all across the US. I'd look some more into that given your goals. There's also going to be small PE shops in any of those cities you mentioned, but opportunities will most likely be scarce and random.

Oct 21, 2018

hm seems like odds are I could find something but itd be a more one off than a set path. Do a lot of bankers successfully make the transition to PWM?

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Oct 22, 2018

Unfortunately don't have any data on this. I've never heard of it happening but I also have never heard of anyone trying either

Oct 31, 2018

a MD that i know at a strong MM made the switch to PWM at a BB

it's not common for sure, generally reserved for those looking for a significant lifestyle improvement due to old age, familial reasons etc

Oct 31, 2018

We had a senior banker in my group move to PWM not too long after I joined. Certainly possible.

Oct 23, 2018

Know Associate level people from BB IB who became PWM guys. Not sure how much they make. Can also try corporate finance or something. Also another very attractive option is to become mid level finance guy or even CFO level at some sponsor owner PortCo in say $20-$30mm EBITDA range. They always have shortage of qualified people, are in the middle of nowhere and will give you equity that makes you pretty rich at some point.

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Oct 23, 2018

You could always do equities in Dallas

    • 1
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Oct 28, 2018

This is actually very easy to do. Plenty of corporate jobs in those areas. Could do Corp dev or any other finance areas at corporate and hit the 150+ mark by that age

Oct 21, 2018

In that case do you think that I should go straight into those jobs or is it best to start in banking in a major city if I don't know exactly where I want to end up?

Oct 28, 2018

I would generally encourage you to pursue the best opportunity you can find, regardless of city, at least right out of school. It's tough to go right into corp dev, and I wouldn't encourage it even if you could. However, in some of those cities, there may be a decent MM bank if you hate the thought of living in a bigger city. But, if you were considering pursuing something like IB, I'd go work in NYC, SF, Houston, etc. if you can swing it first, even if just for 1-2 years.

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Oct 28, 2018

I am originally from Scottsdale and know a number of former bankers who either moved home or just moved there because it's nice. Jobs include PWM, MM IB, corp dev., cop strat, mm buyside, entrepreneurs.

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Oct 28, 2018

Its very easy. There are fewer finance jobs in these cities, but fewer people going for those jobs. Especially at the junior level where you're the only young person who wants to be in these smaller cities or suburbs.

To make it even easier, big NYC shops are starting to grow offices in these satellite cities more. Two recent examples, GS is making a big push in Dallas and Alliance Bernstein is moving its HQ to Nashville (LOL). Happy hunting.

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Oct 21, 2018

Thanks. Is it even worth starting in banking in a major city? I felt like this would give me better opportunities/more opportunities in these cities but wondering if I should just try to start out in one of these positions instead.

Oct 28, 2018

If I was in your shoes, I would consider all cities with the goal of getting the best learning experience possible. That is the great difference maker IMHO. Ask any successful person who's 10-20 years past their first gig, and they'll probably tell you that the first job or two is all about what you learn. So I would still consider a top group in NYC if it has a strong track record of minting good analysts who go on to good exits. But get a sense in the interview of whether you'll work on good stuff and learn a lot. If you meet a team in a smaller town that seems committed to your development and you can back that up with other evidence (e.g.. ex analysts who say good things) then certainly consider that too.

Oct 28, 2018

I know of a few LMM PE shops in the Suburbs of Dallas.

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Oct 28, 2018

Could I PM you with a few questions?

Oct 28, 2018

Yes

Oct 29, 2018

Corporate Development is probably your best bet since there are opportunities pretty much everywhere and outside of major cities

Oct 21, 2018

I have seen/heard that corp dev can be either great or terrible depending on the company. Any insight into the recruitment process for these rolls and how to identify good groups vs bad ones?

Oct 29, 2018

No clue really sorry.
@Sil might be able to help

Oct 29, 2018

Commercial Banking will get you well within that salary range. You can pretty much do it anywhere and the work life balance is great for someone raising a family.

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Oct 21, 2018

Would you be able to provide a description of commercial banking. Have a few friends in it but they cant really explain what they do. Thanks!

Oct 29, 2018

You are essentially making commercial loans (typically ranging from $1-50MM) to middle market businesses or high net worth individuals. The typical roles in CB are loan officer (sourcing deals) or credit officer (underwriting deals).

You can make ~200k by late 20's working 8-5. Not a bad gig.

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Oct 21, 2018

Thanks for the great responses everyone. Super excited by what I've heard so far and have a few followup questions:
1) It sounds like there are actually plenty of opportunities in these areas. Would it still make sense to start in banking in a major city or should I just shoot for those straight away. My hope was that having banking would allow me to come in at a higher level or just access better jobs.
2) Obviously large PE fund recruiting is extremely accelerated and somewhat structured. Would recruiting for these kinds of jobs (Lower mm Pe/corp dev/commercial banking/pwm) also be super early or are these things all on a random sort of timeline.
3) Seen LMM PE/Local IB mentioned a few times. Any insight on salary here? I know that where I'm from those guys don't seem to do too well. Is this something that varies widely by firm?
Thanks again for all the help!

Oct 30, 2018

10/10 recommend the greater houston area. North and West Houston has plenty of upstream/midstream energy jobs and you can live 10 minutes away from a bank, F100 energy co, etc and feel like you're in the country. South Houston has significant downstream/chemicals companies, as well as some aerospace (legacy NASA).

Houston gets a bad rap for its sprawl, but that might be what you are looking for.

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Oct 21, 2018

Honestly I have been considering Houston a lot lately. I am definitely looking for the sprawl and lifestyle that you described. Unfortunately I have no experience with energy. Assuming that I could find some finance positions that wouldn't require expansive knowledge of O&G industry?

Oct 29, 2018

Finance is Dallas is generally less O&G based from what I've heard. You also may want to look into banking in cities like SLC or Charlotte

Oct 30, 2018

you shouldn't have too much trouble assuming you have decent IB experience and can articulate it. Corp dev, biz dev, fp&a, commercial banking, strategy - plenty of options with paths to earn 150-250 w/ 12+ years of experience.

Oct 21, 2018
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Oct 30, 2018