Think you’re ready to write your own will? In short, everyone should have an official Last Will and Testament. It’s the only way to ensure estate receive proper management, rather than the court deciding on who gets what owing to a few outdated parameters. Your children, for example, wouldn’t get anything from your estate if you have a surviving spouse or civil partner.
Having a will means that your wishes on how your estate is shared are honoured. Difficult estates and wills, by contrast, require the advice of The Inheritance Experts. But if your estate (the total value of all your assets) is small and your will is straightforward in nature, you can write your own will.
To do that effectively, you’ll want to follow this guide.
Write Your Own Will: Evaluate Your Estate
The first step to write your own will is to evaluate your estate. This means determining the total value of all you have, both in terms of liquidated assets and in terms of personal belongings. You can bequeath your beneficiaries items like furniture or jewellery, or you can give your beneficiaries a monetary amount.
When evaluating your estate, it is crucial to estimate your debt. All debts and taxes must be paid before the beneficiaries can get access to your account.
Set Out Who You Want in Your Will
The next step is to set out who you want in your will. Include details like who should take care of your children if they are under the age of 18, and who you intend to name an executor. Executors are the ones who carry out your will. You can name up to four.
You should also make exceptions. For example, if all of the beneficiaries you name die before you, you can donate your estate to a charity of your choice.
Explain Who Gets What
In essence, you set out who gets what. Ideally, take into account your debts and inheritance tax before you do this.
What if You Want to Update Your Will?
Codicils are official updates to a will. If the changes you want to make are complicated, however, it is best to create a new will. Generally speaking, you should update or at least check over your will every five or so years. If a significant change in your life has happened (like a grandchild), then update as soon as possible.
When You Write Your Own Will, Ensure It’s Valid
You will also want to make sure your will is legal and valid. Generally speaking, ensure you’re of a sound mind; over the age of 18, and do it in the presence of two witnesses who are not beneficiaries of your will.
When You Should Get Expert Advice
If your estate has multiple complications to sort out, it’s wise to contact The Inheritance Experts. Not only will this make your Last Will and Testament more explicit, but it also helps deal with complicated estates (perhaps you own a summer property in another country).
Store Your Will
You will want to pay either The Inheritance Experts or another official entity to safely and professionally store your will.