Preparing Heirs: How Much Is Too Much?

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One of the most difficult questions you may face is how much money to give your children.
Self-made billionaire Warren Buffet chose to give his children enough to do what they wanted but not enough to be able to do nothing.
Peter Buffet later wrote a book about his life as the son of the elder Buffet entitled, "Life Is What You Make It.
" He considers his relatively meager inheritance a blessing.
He places more worth in the values his father taught him.
He sees that wisdom is the true and priceless legacy his father bestowed upon him and his siblings.
Some children inherit or come into wealth at an early age.
There are more teenage millionaires than people generally think.
If you're rich enough to make your children rich, teach them how to be rich wisely and responsibly.
If you're giving them money out of their inheritance to pay for things they need such as rent, a car and college, let them know that it is their money you are giving them in advance.
Teens who inherit large sums of money are at greater risk of not being able to make an easy transition into mature adulthood than their peers who have to learn how to support themselves.
Help your children discover what they love to do, make a meaningful commitment to that work and take ownership of their money.
Teach them the value in compassionate connection where there is no we and they separation based on financial status.
Rich isn't better than middle class when it comes to the true worth of a person.
Teach them that wealth is a blessing not an entitlement.
Begin to teach them financial literacy.
Educate them on the intricacies of investing.
Let them know what your investment and charity principles are.
Expand their education based on their interest and level of understanding.
Allow them to witness meetings with financial advisors.
Encourage and answer questions they have about what they see and hear.
Some advocate not giving much of anything to the next generation until they are well into adulthood with grown or nearly grown children of their own.
If this is the family's philosophy of giving, discern its motivation.
Is it to give children the opportunity and joy that comes with knowing they can use their inner resources to build their lives? Or is it to keep the children tethered to the parent? One is positive, the other negative.
Outcomes are created from their germinating seeds.
Generally speaking, anything rooted in positivity will be positive.
Anything rooted in negativity will create a negative outcome.
One doesn't have to look very far to see examples of that in people, companies, societies and governments.
Some give the entire inheritance around age 18 in one lump sum - usually for the tax benefits.
Most young adults aren't emotionally prepared or have enough education about wealth to handle the responsibility.
They squander, misuse or become overwhelmed with their circumstance.
Feelings of incompetence or fear of failure often override their ability to shepherd their wealth at its optimal use.
Whatever decision you make about when and how much money to give your children, honor that gift with support for a successful transition without emotional turmoil.
A gift of money without guidance is irresponsible.
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