If you’ve glanced at a property website recently you’ll have noticed that house prices are still through the roof making home ownership a distant dream for many young people.
An additional barrier to securing a slice of green and pleasant land is that mortgage companies are requiring huge deposits. Consequently, as a parent you probably find yourself worrying about your children’s future.
Children today have it tough and in the back of many parents’ minds will be the hope that when you’re gone you can finally give them that helping hand.
By then your house should be completely paid for meaning when the time comes your children will be able to clear their debts and still have enough left over for a deposit on their own home or maybe to start their own business.
But without a will your money may not end up where you hoped it would. With no will you lose control of what happens to your money. The state and the law takes over and your intended beneficiaries may end up with literally nothing.
If you have young children it gets worse. If both parents die and you don’t have a will you’ll have no appointed legal guardians and your children could be placed in the care of the local authorities.
In addition to ensuring your children are looked after by the people you choose, you can also use a will to bequeath their guardians some money to help with the extra costs involved.
For those of you who already have a will – congratulations! But be aware that your money could still be at risk and end up somewhere that you hadn’t intended.
Most wills are drawn up with your partner as the sole beneficiary, then your children. But what happens if you die leaving all your money to your partner and they then remarry?
Now your money could be bequeathed to their new spouse and their children too, reducing the amount your children receive.
Worse still, if your surviving partner then dies their new partner could end up getting all your money and could then write your children out of the will totally.
If all goes well and your children actually do actually inherit everything, things can still go wrong.
Suppose your child marries and then later divorces. Their ex-partner could be entitled to half your money. Or they could hit financial difficulties and your money could be lost to their creditors.
Even before you die, if you don’t plan carefully you could lose your home paying for care costs in your senior years. The result – less cash to pass on to your children. Don’t let the state take and waste your money.
The next time you’re in a crowded room look around you. Two out of every three people there will have no will whatsoever.
It’s no good hoping that your wishes will be carried out. Take control and write a will or use a trust to protect your assets for generations to come. You can control your money after you die, but only if you take action now.
Family Estate Planning Ltd is a friendly, professional service offering assistance with wills, trusts, Powers of Attorney and all aspects of estate planning.