5 Tips on Establishing a Will

Putting together a will is a big decision, and at Woodlawn Cemetery, we encourage our neighbors in the Bronx to take this important step as soon as they feel ready. Just like preplanning your funeral, having a will in place helps you prepare for the future and provides peace of mind in regard to what will happen after you die. If you’re considering establishing a will, we hope the following 5 tips will give you some guidance and inspiration.

  1. Take stock of your assets. 

Before you draw up a will, it’s a good idea to consider your assets—anything you own that has monetary value. Whether it’s property, investments, or savings, pull together all the necessary documents related to each one. This way, when you meet with a lawyer, you’ll know ahead of time which items should be listed in your will.

  1. Choose an executor to manage your estate.

 The executor or beneficiary of your will is the person in charge of handling your estate when you die. Be careful and discerning when deciding who this person will be. Most importantly, they should be someone you trust. It’s common for people to select a child or family member as their executor. Be sure to ask the person first before listing them in your will. If you prefer, you may also choose more than one executor.

  1. Consider your beneficiaries.

Once you decide who will sort out your affairs after you’re gone, you’ll need to determine who will receive the assets outlined in your will. Many people leave their estate to their partner or children. In the event of a blended family, this may be more complicated.

  1. Be as specific as possible.

Be as specific as you can when outlining who will receive your assets. List your personal belongings and who exactly you want to receive them. If you don’t have clear preferences, you can leave a general gift by denoting that you’d like to leave all your personal property to someone like your spouse or child. 

  1. Keep your will in a safe place.

 There are many options for keeping your will in a secure location. Many people
simply keep it in a safe deposit box at their home. You can also choose to
have your lawyer store the document at their office.

To learn more about preplanning a funeral or cremation, we encourage our New York
neighbors to sign up for one of our free preplanning tours that take place every month at our cemetery. Contact our team anytime 24/7.