Kick off this New Year with an organized plate of personal finances. Take time to compile important financial information and documents – a list of assets, bank account numbers, purchase prices, balances, etc. – or to update any existing inventory of your financial information. Think of this inventory as a “cheat sheet” to your financial situation, a cheat sheet that can help ease future financial planning tasks such as tax return preparation, estate planning, calculating your net worth, and applying for a loan.
The exact information to include on your list depends on your personal situation, but to help aid, here are recommendations of items to consider:
- Real estate
- Life insurance policies, annuities, IRAs, pensions, profit sharing plans
- Long-term royalties due to you
- Partnerships and trusts
- Interest in a closely held business
- Bank accounts, cd’s, savings bonds, Treasury securities
- Automobiles, boats, motorcycles, recreational vehicles
- Other personal property
- Short-term liabilities
- Long-term liabilities
- Unpaid taxes
- Safety deposit box
- Military service documents
- Estate planning essentials
- Insurance policies
- Tax returns
Remember; once you complete your inventory, store it safely, update it as necessary, and make sure love ones know where to find it and how to access it. You might even consider giving a copy to your trusted tax adviser.
To learn more about compiling an inventory of your financial information, read the Weaver newsletter article Take Inventory of Your Assets.