So this post is not about estate planning strictly. I will tie it to estate planning of course though. I read an article recently, “The Biggest Finance Mistakes Young Professionals Make.”
Living Without a Budget
I have not always lived with a budget, but once I started my practice, I had to do something different. It was no longer just my partner in crime, James, and myself; I had a business to be concerned about. So we set up a budget, and it has been working very well.
Now, how to tie this to estate planning; estate planning should be part of your budget. You really cannot afford to not have estate planning within your budget. I can work with you to figure out what your budget will allow for in your estate planning; not every aspect of estate planning is necessary for every person. You may not need the complete coverage of a trust, but you do need a will and something in place for your kids, or some other level of coverage.
Paying Full Price for Everything
I have found a new wonderful money saving app; Target Cartwheel. So within our budget, James and I, price shopped around for groceries, we figured out that Super Target is FANTASTIC! We have the Redcard to save us money on every purchase, I print out coupons and I use Cartwheel. We plan our meals out based on what is on sale either in the weekly ad, in the coupons, or in Cartwheel. We try not to pay full price if we can help it, but sometimes it is inevitable. Our greatest savings to date, is from a couple weeks ago, we save $20 on our $80 grocery bill; we basically got our package of on sale steaks for free.
Now I may not be able to get you savings like that on your estate planning; I can offer you affordable services to match your budget and need. If you are married, I can offer you various discounts; say you both want the full coverage of My Assets, the first will be full price and second one will be $200 off.
Not Saving Money
Now part of our budget, is saving some money every month. The savings has been put back into my business lately in one way or another, but the idea is to be able to take a vacation or buy something for us with the savings.
One of the goals of estate planning is tax saving planning. Now who really wants to pay money that may not be necessary to Uncle Sam; I sure don’t. One of the other goals of estate planning is to avoid probate. Probate can be a time consuming and money consuming process if you have not planned for it. That is unnecessary money out of your estate and subsequently out of the hands of your loved ones.
Ignoring the Fine Print
I have always gone over receipts and bills to be sure I got what I was charged for. I am not going to pay extra for something that I don’t have to.
Estate planning is no different. Online will services like legalzoom.com and rocketlawyer.com will save you money today absolutely, however they use basically boiler plate wills that may not be what you intend or even want. Where boiler plate wills may be perfectly acceptable for some people, it is not for everyone.
Making Mistakes on Income Taxes
I have always done my own taxes with the help of HRBlock.com and before I started my own practice, that was perfectly fine for me. However, this year is going to be very different; I will be enlisting the help of an accountant. I want to be sure I don’t miss anything on my taxes this year.
Now as I mentioned above, one of the goals of estate planning is tax savings. Enlist the help of your own financial planner, accountant and/or lawyer to determine your best options for tax savings.