How Estate Planning Can Help You Shape a Living Legacy
‘Legacy’ is a word that tends to get used to refer to the assets someone leaves in a will when they die. In fact, the word ‘legacy’ is much broader than that; it also refers to the enduring impact of a person’s values, and actions throughout their life. At Harpur Wealth Management we consider Estate Planning to be a process that addresses the management of material assets, which can include shaping a living legacy.
What Does ‘Shaping a Living Legacy’ Mean?
Many of our clients are passionate about a cause; they may wish to stop cruelty to animals, help children in war zones, or be part of the solution to climate change. An obvious way of expressing this is by leaving a legacy to an appropriate charity in your will. But there are alternative ways to demonstrate your commitment.
Increasingly we’re working with clients who wish to create a legacy that begins in the midst of their lives, rather than being part of their will. Scheduling ongoing donations to charities during your life allows you more involvement in the work they are doing. You may even choose, as part of your retirement, to focus upon and become an advocate for a particular project.
5 Examples of Shaping a Living Legacy
Estate planning is an opportunity to consider your priorities and make plans for addressing them during your lifetime. This will most probably include financing your children’s education or helping them to purchase property. Alongside that you may want to play a part in other projects that matter to you.
1. A Passion for Education
Most universities and fee-paying schools develop strong alumni networks. These are used to help shape the future of the institution through donations for building projects, or the development of bursaries, grants or prizes. You may want to give your name to a prize for a particular type of educational achievement, or contribute to a fund that will allow students to benefit from the educational experience you received.
2. Gift Aid a Regular Donation to Charity
Maybe you’re a keen sports or athletics fan and would love to use your money to encourage a new generation to get involved and excel. Regular donations to a local sports organisation will be hugely appreciated, especially if you complete a Gift Aid form. This adds an extra 25p in every £1, turning a monthly donation of £100 donation into £1,500 in the course of a year.
3. Align Your Values With Your Life
Climate change is an ever more pressing issue, and many of us are wondering how we can best contribute. You may choose to include in your retirement planning, some projects that fulfil your commitment to a sustainable future:
- Adapt your home to be fully sustainable.
- Fund local projects that improve the environment where you live.
- Donate to environmental R&D projects.
4. Become a Volunteer
You always have the option to donate your time and energy rather than making a financial contribution. Some of our clients decide to give a proportion of their working week to a cause that matters to them. Others have set up play schemes or trained to work for an organisation such as the Samaritans, or Mind.
5. Make Something Happen
Perhaps the most satisfying way of shaping a living legacy is to see a ‘gap’, a ‘problem’ or a ‘barrier’ and find a way to build a lasting solution. An example is FareShareUK which won the 2022 Environment and Conservation Charity Award. The grassroots organisers wanted to reduce food waste, so they ”take good-to-eat surplus produce from across the food industry and redistribute it to those who need it through a network of 10,500 charities.”
Estate Planning With Harpur Wealth Management, Bedfordshire
Estate Planning is a process which both deals with the management of your assets when you die and considers the ways in which those assets may be used during your lifetime. Working with Harpur Wealth Management allows you to plan your legacy, your lifestyle through retirement, and the use of your assets to articulate your values and priorities.
Why not book a free consultation today with a Harpur Wealth Advisor? Call us on 01234 924620 or use our online form.
This article is for information only and must not be considered as financial advice. We always recommend that you seek independent financial advice before making any financial decisions.
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