No one likes to think about it, but it’s a fact of life. At some point, we will all need to have our financial affairs in order because everyone passes away. Making decisions early will allow you to have some semblance of security that your loved ones will be taken care of and will go through less grief when it comes to your financial affairs. Here are five things you can do to get your financial affairs in order.
First, you should really consider having life insurance especially if you have young kids or own property. If you think you may have estate taxes when you pass away or you will a lot of debt, it makes good sense to have life insurance. Purchase it as young as possible so that you will get better rates.
Second, you need to make certain that you have a financial power of attorney who can make decisions about your finances in case you become incapacitated. For instance, if you were to end up in an accident and then in a coma, you will need someone who can handle paying your bills, selling real estate if necessary and handling the other financial affairs that may come up.
Third, make sure that you protect your children as much as possible by naming a guardian who can take care of them and manage any money or property that you are leaving to them. A qualified estate planning attorney can help you with this.
Another important component of planning your financial affairs is covering any funeral expenses up front. You can set up a specific kind of trust that will allow you to deposit funds so that your affairs are taken care of without burdening your family or loved ones.
Finally, make sure that you store all of your documents in a place where your executor can find it. This includes things like your will, trust documents, stock certificates, real estate deeds, bank account information and life insurance information.