My husband and I were excited to finally complete our household estate planning this summer. That was a huge relief as estate planning was a major "to do" item that we could now mark off our list since we married about three years ago. However, no sooner than the ink was dry on our Last Will & Testament, did we learn about a financial situation unfolding within our family, leading us to realize that we would most likely need to update our estate plan again in the next few years.  It was at that time I realized that estate planning is never really over. We have to think of estate planning as an work in progress. 

Once you think about the fact that life is always in motion, it is not hard to understand how and why wills, trusts, health care directives and other estate planning documents are living, breathing documents that you must revisit to keep current, so that your final wishes are indeed fulfilled. Read on for what to think about during this important process. 

If you already have an estate plan in place, it is important to consider any changes in your family finances (did you get married again with kids from previous marriages?), changes in any real estate (pay off a mortgage? buy a timeshare or second home?), children born (guardianship considerations) or possibly even changes to your business (should you be an LLC?). 

However, if you have not yet started any estate planning, the moment you own your first home is definitely the moment to start the estate planning process. Seek out a reputable estate planning attorney and to get started. To better understand what is involved in the process, here are the documents you should consider getting in place: 

When conducting estate planning, your goal should be not only to organize your affairs, but to reduce the amount of administrative duties that may burden your family after your passing. Even though the Probate Courts in Colorado are fairly efficient, it is still somewhat expensive and will take time, another important goal will be to avoid probate. Additionally, the probate process is public, whereas managing a family trust is private. 

If you have been following LRA on Facebook, you already know how much interesting real estate information we provide on a daily basis.  If you are new to LRA and you would like to see housing data for Boulder County, there are plenty of statistics to check out in such as "Days on Market", "Total Inventory" and "Newly Listed Homes".  We track all these market statistics for Single Family Homes (SFH) for most of neighboring towns on a monthly basis, including Louisville, Erie, Lafayette and Superior. Check out recent market summary here.  At Louisville Realty Associates, we have the experience, energy and depth of knowledge to help you list your home for the best price. You can reach me anytime at cory@louisvillerealtyassociates.com.

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