Sunday, 4 December 2022

Where to Get Free Financial Advice From Familiar Sources

Where to Get Free Financial Advice From Familiar Sources
04 Feb

Updated on Thursday, February 3, 2022

You can find free financial advice from familiar sources like bank, brokerage, nonprofit organizations, and blogs. Read on to learn where you can take advantage of free financial resources.

Start with your current financial institutions for free financial advice

Some of the best, free financial advice can come from your own bank, credit union, brokerage, or other financial institution where you’re already a customer. You may already have access to free financial planning resources or a no-cost consultation with a professional advisor.

Your bank or credit union

Your bank or credit union should be one of the first places you go for free financial advice because it’s convenient and you’re already familiar with the institution. Keep in mind that your bank or credit union may encourage you to receive their specific products, so be sure to consider all your options and they fit into your personal financial circumstances.

Example: Bank of America has a program called Better Money Habits, which is a free financial education platform to help people decisions in all phases of life.

Your online brokerage or robo-advisor

An online broker or robo-advisor can help you learn more about investing through courses and webinars. This includes your retirement plan provider through work, too.

Examples: Fidelity manages over 22,000 employer benefit programs; its Learning Center features live and on-demand webinars, coaching sessions, and online classes. And Ellevest, a robo-advisor geared toward women, holds free financial literacy workshops for its members.

5 organizations that offer free financial advice

Beyond your current financial institutions, there are free financial advisors and resources available through nonprofits, financial counseling associations and government agencies.

Free financial advice to pay off debt: National Foundation for Credit Counseling

The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) is a nonprofit that provides free financial counseling to people in debt, first-time homebuyers, student loan borrowers, small business owners, and more. NFCC offers help with eliminating late fees, stopping collection calls, and lowering your interest rate and monthly payments.

to get started: Sign up for a 30-minute phone call with an NFCC Certified Financial Counselor. For online-only help, you can also browse NFCC’s Learning Center, which features planning tools, calculators, videos, and more.

Free financial advice for women: Savvy Ladies

Savvy Ladies is a nonprofit organization that offers free personalized financial advice to women through a helpline. The organization also offers seminars, webinars, keynote speaker events, and a secure forum for women to learn and network. Savvy Ladies acts independently of financial institutions and can provide free resources and programming due to its generous donors and sponsors.

How to get started: Complete the Savvy Ladies’ helpline submission form and they’ll pair you with the right advisor for you.

Free financial coaching: Association for Financial Counseling & Planning Education

The Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education (AFCPE) offers free coaching sessions to families struggling from the financial impact of the COVID-19 crisis. AFCPE is a nationally recognized financial counseling organization that runs a comprehensive financial coaching training program to help improve the financial health of households worldwide.

How to get started: Register for a free counseling session on AFCPE’s website.

Free foreclosure avoidance advice: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provides free or very low-cost counseling services for people experiencing foreclosure. The HUD-approved housing counselors can help you negotiate with your lender, organize your finances and guide you through the law.

How to get started: Find a HUD-approved counselor in every U.S. state using HUD’s website.

Free financial advisors for specific areas: National Association of Personal Financial Advisors

The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) offers free financial assistance to those affected by the pandemic. NAPFA is the country’s leading professional organization with fee-only financial advisors, which means that financial advisors aren’t paid commissions specific to the products they sell.

How to get started: Browse NAPFA’s list of financial advisors offering free advice — advisors also include their specialty areas, like taxes or retirement planning.

Additional resources for free financial advice

  • Podcasts: To hear free financial advice at any time, listen to podcasts like Brown Ambition (geared toward women of color) or How to Money (financial basics and trends).
  • Personal finance books: Through the public library, you can access numerous personal finance books for free like I Will Teach You to Be Rich by Ramit Sethi and Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.
  • Financial planning calculators: Free online calculators, like our loan payoff calculator, can help you understand and reach your financial goals.
  • Local financial literacy programs: Check out your local chamber of commerce, public library, or nonprofit organizations to find free financial literacy programs near you.

The “Find a Financial Advisor” links contained in this article will direct you to web pages devoted to MagnifyMoney Advisor (“MMA”). After completing a brief questionnaire, you will be matched with certain financial advisers who participate in MMA’s referral program, which may or may not include the investment advisers discussed.


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