Does It Make Sense to Hire a Broker?
I get many letters and e-mails from people writing in to tell me about the problems and situations where they have been unhappy with salespeople. I have long spoken out and highlighted the conflicts of interest that exist among various players in the financial services' industry. Brokers who work on commission certainly head the list of those who may not have your best interests in mind when they recommend particular strategies or products.
I have highlighted the inevitable conflicts of interest that come into play when you are seeking advice from someone who has a vested financial interest in a transaction you may make. Obviously, if you go to your local Honda dealer, he's not going to sing the praises of buying a Chevy (if he doesn't sell them) and he is even more unlikely to suggest going without a car and living someplace where you can access to good public transportation.
Good brokers can do well by their clients. Brokers, who get paid on commission, work in various facets of the financial services industry. Real estate agents work with home buyers and house sellers; insurance agents deal in life, disability, home, auto and other insurance lines, securities brokers deal with investments, etc.
Good financial salespeople can add value. Here are the attributes of the best financial brokers I've interacted with over the years:
If you're considering hiring financial help, be sure to read my recent article on the topic.
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Listen to Eric's Song
Paul Shaffer (below left) and his David Letterman Band recorded Eric's song which was written by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame song writer Jake Holmes.
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This song made possible by Eric's donation to