Estate Management and Organization
The loss of a loved one is never easy. Whether the loss is sudden or was expected, a loss is one of the most difficult things a family will experience.
One of the most difficult aspects of dealing with the loss is managing the belongings and property left behind. There are so many things that will need attention and so many decisions to be made.
With decades of experience in helping families going through these difficult times, The Serene Home can help you and your family navigate the process and reduce the material and emotional burden.
Dealing with the practical considerations of a loved one’s estate:
Decide on a timeline: Are there things that will need to be addressed immediately? Bills to be paid, services to be stopped, pet needs to be considered, perishables or plants that will need attention are some of the immediate concerns. Are there friends and other family members that will need to be notified? Other issues can be managed according as time and the grieving process allow.
Locate paperwork: Is there a will or other documents with the wishes of the deceased stated? Where are important financial documents: bank accounts, brokerage accounts, trusts, and insurance policies? Did the deceased keep good records or will some investigating need to be done? Are online account passwords available?
One tip is to run a comprehensive credit report to ensure that all credit card accounts are identified. Also, keep in mind that it’s important to cancel all credit accounts and to notify financial institutions as soon as possible so that no further activity is permitted until things have been settled.
Hire needed professionals: Is there an executor already identified? Is an attorney involved? Probate can be a time-consuming but necessary process. During this time, the will may be read and decisions in accordance with the deceased wishes may be put into place. Will items need to be appraised or valued?
Plan for the distribution of assets: In some cases, property will have been designated by either the will or other understanding among the family, however, often the family will need to inventory items, and make decisions about where things will go. Homes will often need to be emptied and readied for sale.
The Serene Home can be an advocate for you and your family during this time. Here are the services that The Serene Home can provide:
Set up an initial project management plan to settle the Estate along with the family and estate administrators
Communicate with the family throughout the process. Provide emotional support.
Manage the discontinuation of your loved one’s mail, deliveries and scheduled services.
Locate and review the deceased’s paperwork and filing. Establish a filing system to maintain records for probate and estate taxes.
Coordinate bill payment and property maintenance with the Executor.
Work with the Executor to provide information required to locate assets.
Assist in obtaining valuations and appraisals of property.
Inventory, sort and organize contents of the home for family to review.
Accompany the family whenever appropriate to answer questions, address concerns, provide support.
Assist with the distribution of the physical assets according to the will or trust.
Help each family decide which items they want to keep separating sadness and guilt from what truly sparks joy for them.
Work with the family to mediate areas of conflict regarding the distribution of property.
Facilitate donation of items to non-profits or charities.
Work with realtor to prepare the property for sale.