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Start estate planning by inventorying your assets

If you have recently decided to get started on your estate plan, congratulations. Making this decision can certainly seem intimidating, and far too many Nevada residents put it off until it is too late. Of course, you may still have some hesitations about moving forward with planning. In fact, you may not know where to start.

Estate planning is an in-depth process that will have you assessing many aspects of your current affairs, your relationships with friends and family, and your hopes and wishes for the future. It is easy and understandable to feel overwhelmed. When looking for a starting point, it may help to inventory your assets.

What do you own?

When starting your inventory, you may want to look at items you own inside and outside your home. Though you may not need to list every single object, listing assets of value is a wise step. In this case, objects worth at least $100 could safely go on your asset inventory. Some examples of property that may fall on this list include the following:

  • Your home
  • Collectibles
  • Art
  • Electronic devices
  • Antiques
  • Tools and equipment
  • Vehicles
  • Vacation property

This step may take some time because you may have forgotten just how many assets you have accrued over the years. Of course, as you rediscover items, you may want to jot down a note regarding how you would like it distributed after your passing.

Did you remember your intangible property?

The previous examples given for assets to list on your inventory were all physical and tangible property. However, it is important that you include your intangible assets on your inventory as well. These assets may include:

  • Retirement accounts
  • Funds in checking and savings accounts
  • Various insurance policies, including life, home, auto and health insurances
  • Brokerage accounts

This inventory could go a long way in helping you understand your property and helping your loved ones locate property during probate. Counter to your assets, it may be wise to also inventory your outstanding debts, which the probate process will need to address.

What next?

After you have made your asset and debt inventories, you may wonder what action to take next. Fortunately, an estate planning attorney could help you determine what course of action may allow you to create a comprehensive plan that suits your needs. Providing your inventory information to your legal counsel could set your planning process off on the right track.

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