Who Handles Your Estate?
Who Handles Your Estate?
Full Video Transcript Below
Well, good morning. Real estate fans, Alice Lema here, broker John L. Scott here in beautiful Southern Oregon with another edition of my weekly podcast. Today we're going to talk about who handles your stuff when you no longer can. It's basically five tips on how to choose an executor caregiver, somebody to take care of your money and your, your body if you become incapacitated or pass away.
[00:00:27]And some of this was spurred on by our really interesting interview this week on the radio show with a state attorney and real estate attorney Milan Hanson of Southern Oregon law. So look for that. But one of the things we didn't have time to talk about was how do you pick the person who does, like, who's the executor?
[00:00:46] Who does your paperwork, who is in charge of making the decisions about your health who handles the real estate? If you're not dead, but you're incapacitated or if you do die, pass away. So I have these conversations every week with many seniors because It's just part of what spurs a life moment in a change in your real estate.
[00:01:10] And I'm a big fan of having this stuff done ahead of time. So, and I noticed that in some families they will pick a person to be an executor just because they're home all the time or they'll pick the person they get along with the best, and that's not always the best way to do it.
[00:01:28] And I have five things I want to mention. That I really want you to consider before you write all this down in your will or your trust so that you think about it a little bit. So the very first thing that I recommend is you pick somebody who's highly organized in their own lives. They're good with paperwork. They're good with technology. They have a printer in their home. They know how to scan things. They use the cloud.
[00:02:00] So this whole idea of they're just a naturally organized kind of on top of it person,, and that's no criticism to the rest of us who may or may not be. It's just, you need that mentality because being the executor of somebody's estate or having a power of attorney of all that, you need to have a lot of copies of stuff.
[00:02:18] You need to be able to access documents quickly and you need to be very, very almost clerically capable, administratively capable and not everybody has those skills. Not everybody has time to do all that. So the very first thing I want to recommend is that you pick a person that's organized and that they're just like that.
[00:02:39] Any way you don't, you don't pick somebody that says, oh mom, oh dad, I'll, I'll be organized when the time comes. No, don't do that because it's really hard. Plus they're grieving. You need somebody who has like their stuff together in that department ahead of time. So first thing, pick somebody who's already organized with their paperwork and maybe even somebody who likes paperwork.
[00:03:02] Second of all number two, pick somebody who's basically healthy, or at least at the time you make all these decisions, pick somebody who is physically healthy. And I'm not saying anything bad about people that have illnesses or chronic, whatever. I'm just saying in those moments you need somebody who's not having physical demands on their own body taking care of their own illnesses.
[00:03:24] Cause they can't take care of yours or if you pass away and they have another round of cancer or, you know, whatever their ailment is, they can't address your situation. So just try to pick somebody who's physically capable of taking care of your stuff. Especially if they're going to be your care provider.
[00:03:46] If, if you're moving in with somebody or they're moving in with you to be your care provider, pick somebody who's physically capable of doing it and have no shame about it. Just having that as a criteria, there's nothing wrong with it. We're not being judgmental. There's lifting involved. The stress alone takes a toll the caregiver or if the person has passed, there's a physical impact on people when they lose a loved one or when somebody has been incapacitated. It's not an easy job physically, so please, please keep that in mind. We want to set you up for success in these situations and, and when these things happen, they're very sad.
[00:04:25]And there's a lot of distress. So number two, pick somebody who's physically up for the task and physically has time to do it or can take the time to do it. So that's number two.
[00:04:37] Number three, and maybe I should've made it number one, trustworthy and dependable. And again, you have watched this person over their lifetime, or they're a trained professional.
[00:04:49] See, the other thing is there's nothing wrong with hiring outside of your, your tribe. It's okay to get an accountant or a lawyer, or, you know, somebody from the care services, it doesn't have to be somebody in your family or in your extended family. But you want somebody that you know is honest and they're going to do what they need to do when it needs to be done regardless of their situation.
[00:05:17] You don't want somebody who signs up for this and then says, oh, I can't help you this weekend. I'm going to Vegas. You need somebody who's so dependable that they will change their life plans for you for this, for this time. And they'll cut a slice out of their, their life to make this happen.
[00:05:37] Whether they're doing the paperwork or taking care of an estate after you pass. Or they're there during an extended illness or something like that. And the trustworthiness is just, you want somebody who doesn't lie and is honest and does what they say. You need somebody who's going to be your fierce defender especially if there's going to be doctors involved or there's going to be challenges to the estate.
[00:06:05]You need somebody who's going to stand there and be so trustworthy and dependable. They will fight for you on your behalf. Always an easy thing to do. So, and sometimes it can be something as odd as other members of the family want to visit you while you're seriously ill or in hospice or something like that. And they are not trustworthy or dependable. We have had situations where elders medication were stolen. And, and you have to have somebody who's going to be in that situation and, and be fiercely defending of you.
[00:06:38] On that on that scenario sometimes elders property, personal property gets stolen. And, and again, I, everybody says, I sound like such a Debbie downer every week. And it's like, no, I just, I want people to talk about this. I want you to be prepared for this stuff ahead of time. So the trustworthiness is a deep, deep thing, and it's not just being honest and dependable.
[00:07:01] There has to be a certain amount of spying in these people that you picked to help you. So that not to cause fights. We're not saying that, but just somebody who's not gonna be a doormat. And Yeah, just that fierce defense thing. Okay. So that's number three is pick somebody who's trustworthy and dependable.
[00:07:23]So number four, pick somebody who doesn't care if you pick them or not. I know this sounds kind of funny, but I see this a lot where whoever gets to be the executor of the estate, first of all, has no clue what the job entails. And they're not always appropriate. And they're very bent out of shape that if they don't get picked or the rest of the family is bent out of shape, that that person got picked or whatever.
[00:07:51] So you don't want that emotional thing because this is a job. See? And that's the thing. People don't realize this is a job. It's a really hard job. So number four, pick somebody who's not emotional, who doesn't care that they got picked or not. And you know, pick somebody who can work well in a team. So, and that again has to do with a certain amount of detachment.
[00:08:14]They're, they're probably a little bit more business. Like even if they don't have a business background, they're just, they don't care that you picked them or not. And I just think that's super Uber important. And I'm only laughing because it just that doesn't get taken into consideration all the time.
[00:08:28] So, and sometimes that means you pick you know, a more benign personality in your family or in your friends circle who can work with everybody. Who's not gonna have a lot of emotional stuff thrown at them, but it also can mean you pick somebody who you already know doesn't get along with uncle Fred or whatever, or brother joe or sister Gloria, well, you know, who, you know how this all goes. You need somebody who knows who they can do the job, you know, they can do the job, you know, they're going to stand up in those situations. So yeah. Okay. So that's number four.
[00:09:06] Number five is please consider telling everybody ahead of time. And I know this is kind of uncomfortable for people because not everybody likes to talk about this stuff. But once you've made all these decisions, It helps a lot if ahead of time you tell everybody, this is what you did. This is who you picked. This is why, this is what you expect of them. And you hope that everybody will support and help that person, especially, If you have a family or a group of people that take it personally, that they didn't get picked.
[00:09:42] So that's number five is please tell everybody ahead of time. And you know, if you really want to take it to another level You can consider divesting your estate or most of it ahead of time and doing the distribution ahead of time. I have a lot of elders that are doing that. It's like this grassroots movement where they're not only setting all this stuff up, kind of like what I'm recommending, they're taking it a step further and they're actually selling off their assets.
[00:10:10] They're distributing the jewelry. They're giving away the china.. They're doing all this stuff ahead of time. And explaining to people around them as they go, why they're doing what they're doing. And yeah. This person's getting that or whatever. And it just, it really is, is a helpful thing. When finally the, the long-term illness kicks in or the heart attack comes or they pass away or the stroke happens and then they're in assisted living or they need memory care.
[00:10:36] So like, that's like such a too late time to address all this. And you really want to be there for the person who is going through the illness or is dying. You can't, if you have all these other things going on. So that would be my number five for everybody.
[00:10:54] So I hope that was helpful. Please consider subscribing to this podcast,. Please give us a like a comment. Let me know what you think and send it off to other people. I think these ideas are helpful and they're not my ideas necessarily. I just collect them every week because I'm out in what I call the combat zone. So, so anyway, and again, I want to be your real estate agent.
[00:11:17] I am a great buyer's agent. I'm a great listing agent. Very available work really hard. So please consider me for your next real estate adventure. You can reach out to me. I'm working all weekend (541)301-7980 and yeah, make it a beautiful Southern Oregon weekend. We'll talk to you again next week.
[00:11:36] Bye now.