So, you’re stuck with “that job”. You are the executor or trustee of the estate. It is a particularly overwhelming role to have been given that thankless job, you typically didn’t volunteer for, and not one that you should be expected to be good at. I mean, it’s not anything you’ve probably ever done before. There are so many legal requirements that you’ll have to deal with. But so often the one dread we hear most is the, overwhelming one that looms around what to do with all the stuff; all the all the things not named in the will or trust…. the furniture, the artwork, the jewelry, and how to divide that fairly and how to get it done efficiently. And sometimes simply one can’t get past, “Oh my, where do I even start?”.
So, procrastination sets in. I’ve even seen families that put everything in several storage buildings to avoid dealing with it on top of everything else to be done. They’ll have everything just packed in boxes, covered with blankets, and put in storage, sometimes even for years. So before you get there, I’m here to share with you that there are services, and there are lots of companies designed to help with that process, that do this routinely. There are ways to move forward that will save so much time, money and energy later, you will wish you had done things differently if not looked at carefully first.
There are services like FairSplit.com that are set up, so you can just use your phone camera and go around, take pictures, share it with your family, and help figure out who gets what. All done online, with no need to travel, have siblings all in the same location, etc. There are suggestions, video guides and even links to local partners who can help. Typically the estate pays for these helpful services with proceeds, but if not, you as executor or trustee are usually empowered to solicit that help. Remember, the wording of you being named executor or trustee, doesn’t also say: “and as such, you must take your personal time and personally do every task yourself”. You don’t have to be alone in that process. See if you can’t get a little help to have it go more smoothly, more efficiently, and without nearly the stress that you might be putting on yourself to make it work.
To see how quickly you can photograph, list and share the things to be divided with your family, see the video below: