From your policies to your general finances, it is important to have all of these financial elements in order. Sorting out your finances may not always be an easy task but the following steps will definitely catalyse getting organized.
Step 1 – Commit to getting your finances in order
It is recommended that you appoint one specific person, preferably a financial advisor, to help you organise your finances. Ask your accountant or friends to recommend someone if you are undecided. A good financial advisor will always consider your family’s individual needs, requirements and budget allowance before offering you financial advice.
Step 2 – Create a ‘Family Finance’ box for in the event of an emergency
This box should include all important or legal documentation, such as:
- Copies of IDs, marriage and birth certificates
- Annual investment, medical aid info and policy documents
- Copies of trust and will documents
- Regularly update your list of important contact numbers, such as your personal banker, financial planner, accountant and attorney details
Step 3 – If you have not yet done so … draw up a will today
A will is a legal document that comes into effect upon your death. The effect of the will (in its simplest form) is to decide:
- Who should look after your affairs after you pass away?
- Who should benefit from the estate – how you would like your assets to be distributed?
- Who should be appointed as guardians to any minor under your care?
- Funeral arrangements
Everyone over the age of 18 should draw up a will. This will should be updated on an annual basis or as your circumstances in life change, to reflect your most recent wishes for the dissolution of the deceased estate. Additional updates should be considered in the following circumstances:
- Becoming a parent (this is essential to avoid the proceeds of your estate being tied up for a lengthy period, whilst being administered by the State Guardian’s fund. Thus resulting in your dependants having no access to their inheritance.)
- When starting up or partnering in a new business
The effect of a dying intestate will result in a costly and arduous administrative process for the dependants. In a time where they should be trying to come to terms with their loss, they will have to bear the unenviable task of having to deal with state institutions in order to get the deceased’s estate in order. Contact a financial advisor, attorney or trust administrator in order to have your will drafted. Get organized today to minimise worrying about tomorrow!