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Should you go to a financial adviser?

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The regulatory structure for financial advisers is changing. Ed Bowsher looks at whether now is a good time to see an adviser.

A good Independent Financial Adviser can make a difference to your finances and indeed the rest of your life.

That's because improved financial planning can help you get the most from your money and then you're more likely to achieve some of your non-financial goals, whether they're travelling the world or helping your children to buy their first home.

However, many folk have often criticised financial advisers on the basis that they were more like salespeople rather than true advisers. The good news is that new regulations are coming into force which should make you more confident that you're going to get a good service from an independent advisor.

The new regulations mean that all independent advisors will have to be more highly qualified, and their charging structures will also be much more transparent. The new rules come into force on January 1st 2013.

What can financial advisers do for you?

Financial advisers can mainly help you in the following areas:

- Pensions and annuities

- Savings and investment

- Insurance

- Mortgages

Some people visit an adviser regularly, others go when they're at a big life-changing moment such as marriage or buying a property. Either way, financial advisers can make a difference.

More on financial planning:

Why you must draw up a financial plan
Be a pension millionaire
Why you should be terrified

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