Regardless of your age, each of us has a multitude of things we’d like to achieve before we die, so creating a bucket list is a logical place to start documenting what we’d like to accomplish. But before we get too excited about all the wonderful possibilities that can be achieved over a lifetime, it’s important to make sure we plan for our inevitable departure. This means preparing a valid Will.
Why a Will is important?
Creating a valid Will gives you choice and control over how your Estate is distributed and, importantly, it simplifies the administration of your Estate for your loved ones who would otherwise be left to sort it all out. For example, you might want to make specific gifts of sentimental items to certain family members, or perhaps you’d like to allocate an inheritance to your grandchildren or maybe a charity.
Think of your Will as an opportunity to bring peace of mind to your family and loved ones and to make the management of your Estate clear and easy for them to follow.
The main reasons to create a Will include:
- to appoint someone – an executor – who has the authority to step into your shoes and tend to your affairs when you die
- to communicate your wishes regarding the distribution of your assets after your death, and
- to avoid the disputes that often arise where there is no Will.
Many of the disputes that we deal with at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers result from people not having a Will, or having one that is out of date and no longer reflects the deceased’s circumstances at the end of their life.
Preparing your Will now is an important step; one that will help you feel organised and ready for the future.
Now you can enjoy planning your bucket list
Only a quarter of people aged over 50 say they’ve achieved their life goals, but bucket lists are helping them tick off their biggest ambitions. Writing down your list of ideas helps you realise what you want to achieve. Apart from having a set list of goals to strive for, it will also help you reflect on what you’ve already accomplished.
Making sure you’ve got everything in order will enable you to make the most of every day with peace of mind that your wishes have been clearly laid out should anything unexpected happen. That way, you can focus on enjoying your latter years and ticking off items on your ‘to do’ list.
Here are some ideas to get you started.
Get out and about
Retirement is often a time when enjoying life takes precedence over asset accumulation. It is a time to pursue an old hobby or try a new one and there is plenty to get involved in. You might go on a hot-air balloon ride and find it a fun and peaceful experience. You might devote more time to the arts and audition for the local community theatre. If you’re an animal lover, you could apply to become a foster parent to a shelter pet in need. The options are limitless.
If travel is your thing, you might contemplate a cross-country RV trip, a cruise, or a holiday in Europe. As with many things in life, the planning is half the fun!
Start a business
Have you always had dreams of starting your own business and being your own boss? If so, why not add that to your retirement bucket list? It’s never too late to reinvent yourself.
Volunteering is good for the soul and a great way to give back to your community in retirement. Whether you’re passionate about animals, children with special needs or homelessness, there are countless volunteering opportunities available throughout the country and around the world. Get involved by exploring charitable organisations and not-for-profit organisations in your community.
Enjoy time with grandchildren
Spending time with grandchildren and watching them grow is a special gift for both of you. They will cherish memories you create for the rest of their lives. Organise schedules and school vacations so you can visit them or they can take a trip to see you. Maybe even plan a special holiday for a large group of family members or just take the grandkids.
Learn something new
Have you always wanted to learn something new but never had the time? The retirement bucket list ideas are endless when it comes to learning. This fresh chapter is a great opportunity to finally learn a different language, take a cooking class, play an instrument or become an expert on wine. Check out a local college for class ideas and let the learning begin.
Tips to make your retirement bucket list a reality
- Determine your lifestyle – working out what things are really important to you can help you prioritise your bucket list.
- Financial planning – creating a budget and having a plan to cover living expenses and health care costs will be important to determine what discretionary funds you have for your bucket list.
- Plan your estate. If you’re looking to the future, consider getting a lawyer to assist you with your estate planning. Maurice Blackburn has many options available at fixed prices. Everything from a valid lawyer-drafted Will to an Estate planning bundle that includes Powers of Attorney and the various medical documents required if you become incapacitated for whatever reason.
How do I make a Will?
Our online Wills service, MyLife Wills® is a great place to start. You can provide the information for your Will online in the comfort of your own home or on your lunch break. It only takes about 30 minutes, reducing face-to-face time with a lawyer, therefore, reducing the cost. The main difference with our online service is that an expert Wills & Estates lawyer will draft your Will so you can be confident that it is not only thorough, but also legally valid.
To protect yourself, your assets and your loved ones when you eventually do kick the bucket, it’s time to take your Will out of the too-hard pile and put it in the must-do pile. Maurice Blackburn has made it easy for you to start online today.