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How to make your will

a man thinks about his will

Don't worry if making your will seems complicated - here's our step-by-step guide.

1. Work out what you own and owe

You'll need to work out the approximate value of your ‘estate’ (everything you own, minus what you owe). It may be helpful to draw up a list of what you own and what you owe, for example:

  • assets
  • house
  • cash savings
  • bank/building society/savings account
  • shares
  • bonds
  • life policies
  • pension funds
  • household contents, jewellery, possessions etc.
  • debts
  • mortgage
  • loans

2. Decide whom you want to benefit from your will

Think of whom (individuals and organisations) you would like to receive your assets after you’ve gone and how.

3. Think of other wishes you might have

You may want to include your wishes for your funeral arrangements, to help your loved ones when the time comes.

4. Choose your executors

You need to choose executors (who can also be beneficiaries). They will carry out your wishes as set out in your will. 

Your executor can be a friend, relative or solicitor (using a solicitor as an executor will incur fees). You can choose just one executor, but we recommend between two and four to ensure that your wishes are carried out. 

Make sure your executors are happy to take on this duty, as long-term responsibilities and a great deal of work are involved.

5. Keep your will up to date and safe

You should review your will periodically to make sure it reflects your wishes, or after any major life event such as getting married or divorced, buying property, or having a child. 

Once your will has been made, it should be kept in a safe place with nothing attached to it. You can keep your will safely at home, with your solicitor (recommended), or at the bank.  

Questions about wills ››

‹‹ How to leave a gift in your will


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