When it comes to appraisal for what will happen after you’re gone, the feelings and worries this subject evokes can cause too many people to avoid dealing with it altogether, or to only do the bare minimum. As a service that assists with estate appraisal in Maryland, we’ve seen what can happen when someone neglects to make sure their affairs are completely in order before passing away. Often funds or treasures they thought were set to go to one person end up in the hands of a financial institution, or feuding family members find loopholes in their will.
If you want to avoid any confusion during an already difficult time for your loved ones, you’ll want to make sure your estate appraisal in Maryland is thorough and concrete. Here are six tips that should come in handy when you embark on this important project.
- Make a will: This one’s fairly obvious, but we really can’t stress that you should have your will drawn up early, check it over often and not hesitate to make changes as they are needed. And no, a few last wishes scrawled on a napkin don’t count as a will. Make sure you have quality legal guidance during this process.
- Check your finances: Unfortunately, sometimes the retirement fund or overseas investment that an individual assumes will go to their family actually gets absorbed by the financial institution after their death. To make sure all your different investments and accounts go to the people who deserve them, get in touch with your different financial institutions when drawing up your will.
- Earmark funds: You might assume that the $50,000 you leave for your granddaughter will be used for college tuition, but once she turns 18, she might decide that a trip through Asia or a new luxury car is a better use of her inheritance. Fortunately, you can easily set up a trust with different requirements and restrictions on the money you leave behind, so that your hard earned money goes toward endeavors you find worthwhile.
- Edit yourself: We’ve written in the past about the importance of downsizing, but it bears repeating. Too many possessions could easily overwhelm your grieving family, and they might just end up auctioning them off anyway. When planning your estate, use it as an opportunity to assess which items hold real value to you and your family, and try to get rid of some of the rest.
- Think long-term: When planning your estate, it’s best to consider how your resources can be used long-term to help your family and friends, not just in the couple years after your passing. Rather than doling out your estate among your children, for example, you might also set some aside for present and even future grandchildren.
- Get professional help: Estate appraisal can be both an emotionally and logistically draining experience, but it becomes a lot easier when you have a kind, experienced professional working in your best interest. If you need help with estate appraisal in Maryland, we hope you’ll consider letting the team at Jane Campbell-Chambliss & Associates, LLC guide you through it.