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How to Manage Your Bills (Collection) by Liz Weston

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11. Find an Advisor You Can Trust

Fraudsters like Bernie Madoff grab the headlines, but one of the biggest threats to many Americans’ finances isn’t a sociopathic Ponzi schemer. It’s advisors who don’t know what they’re doing or who care more about getting commissions than giving good advice.

Sometimes they’re reacting to the perverse incentives of the financial world, which often reward those who sell a lot of “product” instead of those who help people actually find solutions to their financial problems. Other times, the advisors don’t know what they don’t know. For some, financial education begins and ends with sales seminars.

Financial planning is complex enough—and important enough—that you should seek out people who are competent to give ...

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