Making a will is an important thing to do, particularly when you want to make sure any children are looked after and given a financial boost after you're gone. But what if you don't have children? Should you still make a will?
The answer is absolutely yes. Just because you don't have children to pass a legacy to, it doesn't mean there aren't other ways you can make sure your money does something good. After all, if you don't make a will, your money could end up somewhere unexpected, perhaps with distant relatives you barely even knew.
If you're not sure what to put in your will and who to leave money to, here are some ideas to help you.
Nominate a responsible person
There's more to a will than just leaving money and property to people, and it's reason enough in itself to make one. First, you should choose an executor, who will be responsible for ensuring your financial wishes are carried out. This can be anyone you trust, but make sure you ask them before you name them officially. In addition, you could give them the responsibility of managing your money if you're too unwell to do so yourself.
You might also want to name someone who can make healthcare decisions on your behalf if you're not able to. It should be someone you trust to make the right choices and carry out what your wishes would be.
Other family members
Although you don't have children, you might have nieces, nephews, cousins, or any other number of relatives you'll want to leave a gift to. Even if you haven't seen them for a while, it might be worth considering anyone you're particularly fond of.
You don't need to be related to someone to remember them in your will, and people are increasingly finding a close friend has left them something. It's a nice way to let someone know how much they mean to you and can be a pleasant surprise that helps them with their grief.
Charitable donations have long been included in people's wills, and there's been a bit of an increase in recent years. Whatever your passions are, there's bound to be a charity you'll happily support, and in the case of smaller organisations, your legacy can be a massive help.
If you've found yourself in the hospital or a nursing home, some of the people looking after you might have gone beyond what's expected and showed amazing compassion and care for you. In this case, if you want to, it's not inappropriate to leave some money to show how much you appreciate what they've done for you.