Millions of Aussies are risking their assets falling into the wrong hands with a whopping 52 per cent admitting they haven’t prepared a will.
Alarming statistics compiled by Finder.com.au reveal around 9.2 million people across the country haven’t even begun the process of preparing a will, and thousands more are completely clueless about whether or not they have one.
The survey of over 2,000 Australians found 34 per cent of respondents claim they haven’t got around to it yet, 14 per cent say they don’t have enough assets to justify a will and amazingly, 4 per cent admit they don’t even want one.
Perhaps not surprisingly Baby Boomers are the most prepared in this department, with nearly eight out of 10 of respondents in this age group already having a will. From there it seems as age decreases so does the lack of knowledge and care for wills. Only one in five people in the Generation Y segment claim to have a will, while a mere 9 per cent of those aged under 23 per cent don’t know if they have a will or not.
The thought of dying certainly isn’t something people like to think about, but according to Finder personal finance expert Kate Browne, Aussies still need to act even if they don’t have a large estate.
“Most people don’t like to think about their death and fewer still enjoy paperwork, but if you die without making a valid will, your assets could be distributed in a way you would not have chosen,” she explained.
“The data shows one in seven people falsely believe that a will is only necessary if you have a large estate. Even if you don’t have a house or share portfolio, you may have money in super, jointly owned assets or a life insurance benefit that needs to be divided.”
While making a will may seem unimportant, especially for those still under the age of 50, it ultimately helps take the pressure off your loved ones making decisions about your assets for you.
“Nothing is certain but death and taxes so consider it your duty to prepare a will long before you need one – your loved ones will always be better off if you do,” Browne said.
“Especially if you have kids under the age of 18, nominating someone as the guardian of your children is reason alone for getting a will in place.”
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