As legacy planners, we get a lot of questions about how to store important documents, photos, and other digital assets for the long haul…and how to securely share them with trusted loved ones who will play a role in our estate plans.
We’ve written all about setting up those roles, but what about ways to store assets? Here are some of our favorite resources/items:
1. Online Storage
Do you have photos, videos, or documents that you want to preserve or share through generations? Are you nervous about things getting lost in a move, damaged, or misplaced? Or maybe you just have more than you can handle physically! Whatever the case, one of the best ways to store your digital assets is through an online cloud-based storage platform.
2. External Storage
There are some things that you may not want to store digitally: birth certificates, passports, will or trust documents, etc. In that case, an alternative is to ensure their physical security, for example, through a safe or safety deposit box. Tip: If you do choose to use a safe, be sure that it’s a damage-proof safe, and that a trusted person has the combination in case something happens to you.
Another option to store things offline is through an external hard drive. Our team is a huge fan of external hard drives for large files and private information! It allows you to organize electronic documents, photos, and videos on a tangible drive without having it accessible online.
Our favorite is the LaCie – Rugged 2TB External Hard Drive
3. Password Protection
Are you someone who uses the same password for everything? Or someone who stores all of their passwords on a sticky note on their desk? Well, have you considered what would happen to those if they got into the wrong hands–or if something happened to you?
Many of our digital assets are protected through passwords, but we forget that our passwords need to be protected and/or accessible if needed. If you’ve never considered using an online encrypted password storage solution, you may want to consider it now. These tools allow you to safely store your passwords and grant access to those who may need them. Often, you’ll also be able to safely store things like credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, bank account information, etc., but this depends on the platform. In terms of a home base for all of your important account information, this is a great option!
4. Asset Organizers
If you’re overwhelmed with the idea of organizing your physical assets and/or digitizing them, don’t worry. There are plenty of professionals that will help you organize! Whether it is a professional organizer, professional digitizer, or photo storage expert, there is always someone who can help get you started.