Planning your estate

Boulder neighborhoods are in the middle of a crisis as more and more people put off the planning of their estate. They think that estate planning is something that only older people need and not something they should worry about. However with the consistently rising in price, they’re sitting on a landmine and don’t even realize it. That’s why estate planning is so important.

The first step in estate planning involves taking stock of your assets. This sounds like the easiest step because people realize exactly what they own such as their house, their car and a summer home or boat. However there are other things that people tend to ignore including other types of real estate. Any building or plot of land in that individual’s name must be included in the estate planning.

Estate planning also involves other things that the individual owns. Any type of savings falls under the estate including Cds, bank accounts and money market accounts. They also have to add in their investments such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Other things to include in estate planning is a pension, IRA, 401 (k), retirement account, life insurance and any interest they have in a business. They also have to include things worth a significant amount of money such as vehicles, collectibles and jewelry.

Resources on estate planning include:

Once a person sets up their estate, they need to keep in mind that it should be redone if the value of the assets change. For example, if the house suddenly rises in price by several thousand dollars, the estate should be recalculated. The same thing holds true if the number of dependents rises or if the person moves to another state. When the executor of the estate is changed or the individual estate holder remarries, the estate should also be looked at again. The death of an heir also indicates a significant change to the estate.

Individuals also need to look into how the laws in their state apply to their estate. These laws change significantly from state to state. The same holds true for the taxing of the estate since many people want to minimize the amount of taxes their heir or heirs pay after their death.