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How to take that first step and draft your estate plan

Drafting, composing and ultimately completing your estate plan is a tough endeavor, there's no doubt about that. But the big hurdle to getting this done is, well, getting it done. So many people procrastinate or avoid dealing with their estate until it's too late, and then, their loved ones are left with a legal mess that will likely leave them with less than what you intended to leave them.

So today, let's talk about a couple of the common reasons people don't confront their estate plan needs and why everyone should do their best to overcome these factors and draw up an estate plan.

First, many people think that you don't have to address your estate with an estate plan until you're older. However, anyone over the age of 18 should have an estate plan. This life is a precious one, and sadly, this world is full of accidents and tragedies. A younger person who unfortunately loses his or her life may not have the wealth or assets that an older person has accumulated, but they would still have an estate. And without that plan, it would be out of the hands of the deceased person's loved ones.

Another hurdle to creating an estate plan is the belief that your finances are just "too simple" for an estate plan. No matter your financial status, an estate plan can handle the matter. With an estate plan, you are simply trying to protect what is yours for your family -- and it doesn't matter what your finances look like if you want to do that.

Source: Forbes, "7 Common Estate-Planning Blunders Not To Make," Sheryl Nance-Nash, Sept. 15, 2014

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