Hometown: Long Island, N.Y.
Worst advice: "Someone told me not to invest in my own small business. My partner and I decided to ignore this advice and invested in our start-up MyFreebeez.com anyway. It has turned into a huge success and we are absolutely glad we did it. We've already earned our investment back many times over, and are still continuing to earn on that investment." What the experts say: Providing advice on whether entrepreneurs should invest in their own company is a bit tricky. While Humet's business became a success, that isn't the case for all business owners. "I tell people to be very careful with this, since the majority of businesses don't make it," Kahler says. Rather than telling entrepreneurs to steer completely clear of investing in their own business, Kahler suggests that an adviser should help the business owner think through the risks and make an informed decision. Certified financial planner Laura Scharr-Bykowsky of Ascend Financial Planning in Columbia, S.C., says it's OK to "invest prudently" in your own business to maximize growth, but doesn't suggest investing exclusively in your business. "You can diversify away risk by spreading your investments out among several noncorrelated asset classes," Scharr-Bykowsky says. "For instance, if your business depends on overseas sales, you might want to dial down that exposure in your financial investments." 4. Brittany McDonough
Profession: Recent college graduate
Worst advice: "During college, I was told to open a credit card and use it to charge all my books and school fees on. The 19% or more interest on a credit card is far more than the subsidized government loan that ended up covering my school costs." What the experts say: Whether college students should have credit cards really boils down to whether they are able to keep on top of payments, Kahler says. "I don't think it's a good idea for college students to have a credit card if they're not going to pay off the balance each month," he says. Morrison adds that college kids are often offered a "teaser" rate of 0% interest or close to it, but eventually the real rate kicks in, which can get young people into trouble. Kahler says that using student loans can be a good alternative to pay for books. "If you are going to pay off the credit card monthly, that is far cheaper than paying interest