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Ask Dave

What's A Legacy Drawer?

A Twitter listener asks Dave to explain his Legacy Drawer concept. Dave is happy to help.

QUESTION: A Twitter listener asks Dave to explain his Legacy Drawer concept. Dave is happy to help.

ANSWER: In the area where you pay your bills, you usually have a file drawer or two where you keep up with your house records—the things having to do with your life. It’s in my study in my home, and I have a file drawer that we have nicknamed the Legacy Drawer because it is where all of the paperwork is that dictates what happens as I leave and leave a legacy. Obviously, in that drawer would be the will, all of the paperwork having to do with our home, any other real estate that we own, mutual funds we own, investments, retirement accounts we have, life insurance, disability insurance, health insurance, homeowner’s insurance, and car insurance policies. Everything having to do with anything with our lives. If I die, Sharon will be there to open that drawer, find out what’s going on, and will know what to do. There are instructions in there. I’ve gone a little bit further and even made a list of people to call. Everything’s laid out. There’s a full plan if the plane goes down or the milk truck takes me out.

It sounds very nerdy, but having worked with a lot of widows and widowers, it’s a big deal if everything is organized, neat, and thoroughly laid out to make it easy when somebody dies. In the middle of grief, one of the worst feelings is to also be disorganized. Wealthy families manage their wealth well; that’s why they became wealthy. Even if you’re not wealthy, you ought to still do this. Part of it is just practice for when you become wealthy. It’s a really sad thing when someone passes away and nobody knows where the titles to the cars are or they don’t know anything about the house. I think it’s a way that I say, “I love you” to my wife and my kids. I have excellence in the thoroughness of the details of an estate plan, and all the paperwork having to do with my life is right there in one drawer. You can open it up and find out anything you want to know about ol’ Dave. It’s called the Legacy Drawer. It’s how we leave a legacy.