Inventorying assets a good estate planning starting point

When starting an estate plan, many people think they should immediately think of who should get what. While making designations for property distribution is certainly important, Texas residents first need to know exactly what assets they have. As a result, it may be wise to start an inventory as they being estate planning.

An inventory of assets can include items that a person has inside and outside his or her home. Typically, small personal items, like handmade gifts from grandchildren, do not necessarily need to be in the inventory, but if assets are valued at at least $100, it is wise to list them. Some examples of such items could include jewelry, electronic devices, art, antiques, cars and even the home itself. It is also important not to forget any assets that may reside outside the state, such as vacation homes.

Of course, when making this inventory, it is important not to forget nonphysical assets. These assets could include bank accounts, retirement accounts, life insurance policies, homeowners insurance, investment accounts and numerous other assets that a person may not physically hold. Knowing that these accounts exist could be immensely useful when planning and for surviving loved ones when the time comes to locate assets.

Inventorying assets can certainly be a useful starting point when estate planning. It can give Texas residents a better idea of what assets they need to address and allow them to consider to whom they would like to leave those assets. This inventory list could also provide useful information to individuals' legal counsel who may be helping them throughout the planning process.

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