This is an article from Quraishi Law Firm (https://quraishilaw.com/) in Frisco, Texas, that we thought others may find helpful.
As the baby boomer generation ages—and downsizes—more and more adult children will be tasked with going through their deceased loved one’s belongings to decide what to do with everything. As more and more people downsize after retirement, china sets, furniture, heirlooms, and other belongings are often left behind and unwanted.
Traditionally, these items have been passed down to the next generation, but today, the next generation has different needs, tastes, and wants. As a result, there is a surplus of “stuff” that baby boomers don’t need or have enough space for and their adult children don’t want. Maybe that includes you.
This is an all too common problem with a few helpful solutions.
The thought of tossing a lifetime of belongings in the trash is more than many can bear, which explains the advent of the senior move management industry. Today, there are a plethora of professionals who can help your loved ones go through each item to decide what should be kept, what should be given away, and what should be donated.
The cost of this professional service can be up to $5,000 for a large estate, but it eases the burden on the adult children and ensures the loved one’s wishes are honored.
Keep in mind, as the baby boomer generation ages, charities and nonprofits that once accepted everyone’s used furniture and other large items are faced with the burden of too much stuff. The dated styles that baby boomers preferred during their prime have gone out of style for the time being. The current generation considers furniture, dishes, etc. as disposable, which is better suited to their urban, fast-paced lives than sentimental items that are meant to be passed down from generation to generation.
Another way to decrease the time and effort it takes to dispose of your belongings is to be very clear which items you consider valuable heirlooms by indicating this in your will.
Most importantly, ask your beneficiaries what they want and what they don’t want. You’ll also want to make sure your beneficiaries know what’s important to you and what isn’t. The more communication, the better.
You may be surprised to discover that most fights that break up families aren’t about money at all. They usually involve children fighting over their parents’ personal property that didn’t have clear instructions.
As baby boomers continue to age and non-profits keep turning away dated donations, the need for competent estate planning is greater than ever. A comprehensive estate plan can ensure your belongings either go to those who will cherish them or to charities that will benefit from them.
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- Income Tax Basis in Estate Planning – Part 2 - April 23, 2018
- The Downsizing Generation: How to Handle a Surplus of Stuff When a Loved One Ages - April 18, 2018