Estate planning is a helpful tool to help you transfer your investments to the people you care about. You may be interested in passing your home on to your children, for example, or sending money to a cousin or grandchild when you pass away.
Estate planning allows you to do this and to plan for the best way to pass on your assets. From using trusts to understanding taxes and gifting assets away now, there are multiple ways for you to transfer your assets and plan for old age and life after death.
Simple ways to pass on your investments
One of the simplest ways to make sure your investments go where you want them to is to write a will. In your will, go over who you want to have assume control of certain assets. Name your beneficiaries, and be clear about your wishes.
Another option is to set up a trust. Your trust can be irrevocable or revocable—there are benefits to both. If you choose an irrevocable trust, it will take assets out of your name and prevent creditors from accessing them, minimizing risk. Then, upon your death or when the terms of the trust are met, your assets will pass on to your beneficiaries.
A third possibility is to set up beneficiary designations on the investment items themselves. For example, if you have a large savings account, you can add a beneficiary who would receive all the assets within that account upon your death.
During your lifetime, you may decide that passing on assets is better while you’re able to be sure they’re going to the right people. If so, keep in mind that there are gifting limits that could help you avoid taxation and pass on your assets quickly and easily. Doing this correctly may help you qualify for Medicaid, for example, avoid taxes and keep more of your assets in the family.
These are a few things to think about as you consider transferring your investments to those you care about. As you work on your estate plan, you’ll see that there are several methods you can use to protect both your loved ones and your hard-earned investments.