You inherited your china from your great aunt and have brought out those dishes on special occasions for years. Given that you have maintained them in pristine condition, you might dream about leaving them to a child or grandchild who will cherish them the way you do.
People often have emotional attachments to personal property and may consider items like furniture, silverware and personal collections to be valuable family heirlooms. You may assign a high value to these items and plan to leave them to specific family members when you die. However, data about estates increasingly shows that people do not keep much of the personal property they inherit.
Consider the opinions of the beneficiaries
If your children or grandchildren have expressed an attachment to or fondness for specific assets, then it makes perfect sense for you to pass those specific assets on to your family members when you die. Items without emotional value are likely to either wind up being sold by the recipient or possibly donated to a charity. You certainly don’t want your favorite belongings to seem like a burden to the people you love.
It may be a more practical approach to instruct your executor to simply sell your personal belongings and furniture and share the proceeds of that estate sale among your beneficiaries. You can still allocate specific assets that have emotional value for the recipients in your estate plan while limiting how many specific belongings you pass to each beneficiary.
Employing a realistic approach to estate planning will benefit you and the people who will receive property from your estate.