What a Will Can Do For You

For most people, making a will is like preparing a tax return — they put it off as long as they can. You may recognize some of these excuses: “It’s too expensive… I can’t handle the decisions… My estate is too small… It will hasten my death… I don’t have time… I don’t know who to name as my executor or as a trustee or as the guardian for my children… I don’t know where all my records are… I’ll do it later.”

There are at least seven things a well-crafted will can do for you.

  1. A will can let you close the books on your earthly stewardship responsibilities. You’ve made careful decisions to conserve your estate during life and you naturally want to do the same at death. Through your will, you can wrap up your affairs and “put your house in order.”
  2. A will can help you express your love and thoughtfulness to others. When a person dies without a will, those who are left behind must sort out the estate and make difficult decisions. Uncertainties arise. Disagreements develop. The grieving process is compounded by frustration. What a difference when the bereaved are left with funeral instructions, an inventory list and a well-crafted will!
  3. A will can remind your loved ones of your basic beliefs and commitments. The preamble can affirm not only your guiding principles, but your aspirations for those who are left behind. Your words can provide comfort and encouragement. The way you distribute your estate can also express your commitments. Will you care for your family in an honorable way? Will you affirm worthy charitable organizations? Your will can be an inspiration.
  4. A will can ensure that your desires are fulfilled. If you have dependent children, you can designate who will care for them. You can specify the person who will handle the closing of your estate. You can select the trustee to oversee one or more trusts. You can time the distribution of gifts to children and grandchildren. You can designate the giving of specific items to family members and friends. You can make provisions to support charitable organizations. A will puts you in the driver’s seat and allows you to make decisions according to your concerns and commitments.
  5. A will can conserve your assets, ensuring that more is available to meet your objectives. In many states, a will not only reduces the administrative costs of probate, it can reduce, delay or even eliminate estate taxes. Wise stewardship means making sure your assets go as far as possible.
  6. A will can let you ensure the pattern of your lifetime support of Boise Rescue Mission Ministries. As you know, we depend on the regular giving of our many friends. In effect, we can’t afford for any of these faithful donors to stop giving. That’s why it means so much to us when we learn of thoughtful stewards who use a will to fund an investment fund that will provide perpetual income for our ongoing needs.
  7. A will can provide peace of mind. You can relax in the knowledge that your temporal affairs are in order. You have cared for those persons and those concerns close to your heart. Your will can also bring a sense of peace and security to others.With all the benefits, one might expect that every person would have a will. But the opposite is true. Of the 1.5 million persons who die each year in the U.S., only 30 percent have a will. If you fall into the 70% group without a will, check out our free-online tool to explore how a will fits into your current financial planning strategy. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE.


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