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Meet Grant Botma of Stewardship in Gilbert

Today we’d like to introduce you to Grant Botma.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
The average American graduates from high school or college knowing next to nothing about personal finances. Most are lucky if they even know how to balance a checkbook. As a result, the typical person is clueless or intimidated by mortgages, insurance, financial planning, investing, and budgeting. This is a sad reality. As life progresses, we find ourselves looking to buy a house, weighing different insurance policies, and trying to keep our finances in order. Those things are tough to do correctly when we do not have the proper information.

Unfortunately, everybody has seen the consequences of, or experienced themselves, poor financial decision without proper education and guidance: A mortgage payment that is too high; excessive fees; high interest; paying too much for insurance; too little coverage; the wrong kind of coverage; terrible customer service; making big financial decisions under pressure from “salesmen”; Living paycheck to paycheck without a plan; poor investment advice; and these are just a few. These are all financial injustices, and they can easily flood into the rest of our life carrying relationships and marriages downstream with them. When I read about and witnessed these financial injustices, I felt sick. Even now, as I write this and think about these things, my stomach churns. It makes me angry, and I want to stop it wherever I can. It is that passion which is the driving force behind Stewardship.

We created Stewardship to take a stand against financial injustice—to be a group of companies that can educate and guide people through mortgages, insurance, financial planning, and investments. The mortgage, insurance, or financial plan your neighbor has may not be what is best for you. Getting to know you, understanding your needs, and empowering you with relevant information is what I want to do. Our business isn’t to solely perform transactions. Stewardship genuinely cares about people by loving and serving them in their finances.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
No. It has not. The first company of all the Stewardship companies I started was Stewardship Mortgage. I started this mortgage company a few months before the housing crisis.

Combined with that economic difficulty, was a social obstacle. It is not normal for a finance company to be genuinely customer focused – to put the customer’s needs before their own. It was really tough to find vendors and other business partners to do business the way we wanted. To be 100% transparent and fully educate. To limit our income and give everyone an amazing deal.

Despite these, and many other obstacles, the Lord has been faithful in our endeavor. Each year, as we say no to self and serve others first, our business has grown!

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Stewardship – what should we know?
Stewardship is a group of companies that help people with their finances. The specific services we help people with are – mortgages, insurance, investment management, and financial planning. Simply put, we genuinely care about people by loving and serving them in their finances.

I am most proud of the culture we have established – internally and externally. People in our community know that if they want to get taken care of, if they want to have their “money well rooted”, they come to us. We are trusted. We have a great reputation. We genuinely give people the best financial situation possible.

What sets us apart is humility and selflessness. We do not care if a customer is financial destitute or affluent. We serve everyone with all we have, and selflessly put their needs above our own.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
I own Stewardship Mortgage and founded Stewardship with Stewardship Mortgage, Stewardship Insurance, and Stewardship Planning. But eventually, I brought on trusted friends to help increase the number of people we impact in our community.
Brandon Ream has been an employee since the beginning but recently was given ownership in Stewardship Insurance. Jake Norton and Jeremy Sharp are also part of the team as owners of Stewardship Planning, and Stewardship Financial.

Those guys are my business partners, and some of my closest friends. They deserve as much, if not more, credit than me.

Another friend that has played a huge role is Eric Shelahl. He is a wise man that has been there and done that. He has been a huge support system. He has given me a ton of advice and been instrumental in giving me perspective. He has been a business owner for much longer than I have been alive and recently started a food bank here in AZ – https://arizona.midwestfoodbank.org/who-we-are/history
And, my wife – Jodie Botma. I literally could not have done any of this without her. She has unbelievable grace, trust, support, and insight. Having her at home has been everything to me. Stewardship does not exist without my wife. Her name may not be on any of the ownership documents, but her love, sacrifice, and hard work are very much woven into the fabric of the company.

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