How to make a will at home

Time needed: 20 minutes.

This guide sets out how to make a will at home without leaving the house. It should take between 10 minutes and half an hour.

  1. Consider who you want to mention in your will

    In your will you choose who will look after your estate, who to leave your worldly wealth to, gift any specific gifts (e.g. heirlooms or other legacies), and who you want to look after any dependent children.

    Make sure you have everybody’s full names and either (a) their current address, (b) their last known address or, if you have no other option (c) their birth date and other information to allow the executors to identify and contact them.

  2. Prepare your will using a will-writing service you can access from your home e.g. online provider

    You can make a will online or choose another remote will making service e.g. telephone or a DIY will making kit e.g. off Amazon.

    When considering a provider you should think about the following:

    (a) is the provider registered with a regulator or professional body e.g. Society of Willwriters, Institute of Professional Willwriters or the Solicitors Regulation Authority,

    (b) does the provider manually check your wills,

    (c) are there any hidden costs and

    (d) is the provider fully insured?

    N.B. at Make a Will Online we tick the above boxes. Additionally, for all of our customers’ peace of mind every will is checked by a fully qualified solicitor.

  3. Complete your will at home – following all instructions

    You should print out and carefully staple your will. Alternatively order a printed copy if you don’t have a printer.

    Once you have done this you need to sign the will in front of two witnesses. Make sure the witnesses are not beneficiaries under the will or related to any beneficiaries. Your witnesses can be neighbours, friends, medical practitioners or anyone else who is an adult and “of sound mind”. The witnesses need to see you sign the will and each other sign the will.

Important note about witnessing your will:

If you are self-isolating you should follow medical advice. Current recommendations include two meters’ (2m) social distancing. Make sure you wash your hands after contact. A witness MUST see you and the other witness sign the will. Do this “in the flesh”. Do NOT do this remotely e.g. over a video conference. To reduce risk of contamination please follow current medical advice.