Rock Planck has been an affiliate member of NAIFA since 2020 and is today helping clients set up financial strategies for their future. With 30 years' experience in the business, Rock was first attracted to the field as a loan officer and reverse mortgage planner due to the belief that mortgage planning should be incorporated into every financial plan (although it often is not). As Rock says, “not enough people really consider the impact that having a mortgage has on their financial picture.” Rock believes in providing knowledge to people, rather than focusing solely on having the lowest costs or rates—he is, as he says, “another tool in their toolbelt.” Rock is a firm believer that home equity needs to be acknowledged and accounted for when designing a financial plan, and that most financial planners understand that, so he usually ends up working with them.
Today, he is a Loan Officer with Fairway Independent Mortgage, a NAIFA corporate partner.
Rock got started in this business right out of college by working for a couple of years for an investment firm that bought out banks that failed. At a certain point, there were bigger groups involved with that field that the Rock’s investment firm could not compete with. Rock ended up meeting with one of his college coaches, who asked him if he wanted to be a partner in a small mortgage company, and his career in the field “took off from there,” as he says.
While there are many aspects about the profession that Rock enjoys, his favorite is when he brings a proper mortgage plan to the table for a client’s financial plan. He understands how important and impactful it is to be able to provide that type of structure to a financial plan, and how it is usually highly underestimated. As Rock says, “most financial planners understand the value of a mortgage plan and how it fits into a financial plan.” However, many of the clients that are needing that financial plan don’t consider it to be as pertinent or important, which can lead to a less effective plan.
While working in this type of field can be challenging, Rock finds enjoyment and motivation through that challenge. As he says, “I enjoy the challenge of educating financial advisors, realtors, builders, consumers, and even our own Fairway loan officers.” A proper structure is done through knowledge and education, and Rock likes to ensure that, even though it will be difficult, more people are as knowledgeable as possible in the subject. Even though it is difficult to arm people with the proper information, Rock likes to be someone who looks at something that might be a possible setback as an opportunity. He considers teaching about a mortgage plan like a farmer planting seeds: the more the knowledge keeps being given, the more people will understand and start using it.
Rock has helped many people by including a mortgage plan in their financial plan. One recent client that he has helped was an older lady dealing with a vindictive ex-husband trying to force her to sell her home. He helped her set up a plan that would effectively let her keep her home while allowing for room for her finances. He helped her use her home equity to distribute assets to him, while also getting her some money into her pockets, and giving her a way to keep her home and maintain her retirement.
In his free time, Rock enjoys many outdoor activities. An avid motorcyclist, he enjoys taking bike road trips. He recently completed an extensive 2,000-mile road trip with his mother and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. He is also a competitive rifle shooter, competing in 3-position rifle shooting, service rifle, and smallbore competitions. Whether at both work or at play, Rock excels at and thoroughly enjoys what he does.
Rock also participates in community involvement and service, with his Fairway office being pro-veteran. They raise money in order to help veterans through various charities, a recent one being the American Warrior Initiative, which takes the money in order to provide service dogs for veterans as well as other services for veterans. He has also expanded this into NAIFA events, where he sold shirts for 22 dollars that he bought, the average number of veterans that commit suicide a day. With pride and unyielding commitment, Rock is making a big difference in the lives of veterans.
Thank you, Rock, for your loyal service to our industry and association. We’re proud to call you one of our own.