We’re all going to die one day. As harsh as it may sound, it’s true for us all and, without a will in place, your death has the potential to cause a financial nightmare for your loved ones. The last thing your family want to have to deal with while going through the stages of grieving is additional admin and endless conversations regarding how your estate should be divided up. It can cause family blows and the breakdown of relationships, but all of this can be avoided if you prepare properly. You might feel you’ve got thirty years of life left in you yet, and you probably do! That being said, it’s still important that you arrange your will and your finances as soon as possible as sadly no one can predict what might be around the corner.
Not sure where to start with your will? This guide will get you started…
Seek Professional Assistance
No one has bucket loads of experience when writing a will as it’s usually something you will only do once in your life, therefore it’s always best to seek the advice of experts. There are websites that offer guidance and support through the will writing process, and will ensure everything is in place and legitimate thanks to their in-house legal experts. Everything can be completed online and you might be surprised at how quick making a will actually is. You can always edit your will if circumstances change, so don’t be concerned that this is set in stone.
Name Your Executors
An important element of your will is naming your executors, these are the people that will oversee the financial process when you die. Popular choices tend to be spouses, or close family such as siblings and children. You may wish to select an external executor, this could be a solicitor or a professional probate service, for example. It is worth noting that additional fees may be incurred if you go down this route. It must be someone that you trust, as your executors will be in charge of everything from paying off any debts to taking ownership of your estate. With much of the world being online these days, a top tip is to compile a secure document which lists your online passwords to access your accounts, this should only be shared with your executor after your passing but is something to note.
Divide Up Your Estate
This is basically the part where you decide who gets what. You need to consider everything from your car to your savings, your house, and even your pets. Don’t rush this, think it over and be confident in the decision you make. People are not obliged to take on what you leave them, so if you’re planning on surprising one of your children with three dogs, it’s best to run it by them first!
Consider Inheritance Tax
If you own valuable properties, or have a fair amount of savings, shares, or other assets then you need to consider the various tax implications. You are required to pay 40% of any assets worth over £325,000 that you leave. It’s best to speak to a financial expert about this who can guide you to the best solution for your personal estate.