Shrinkage? Yep, Estate Shrinkage.

Services for Real Estate Pros with The Reaves Agency

What did Elvis, FDR, Ricky Nelson, Conrad Hilton and Nelson A. Rockefeller all have in common?


Estate shrinkage, that is.


You may be interested in what the public probate records of the estates of these and others have to show:

NameGross EstateNet EstatePercent Shrinkage
Franklin D. Roosevelt$    1,940,999$  1,366,13230%
Henry J. Kaiser, Sr.$    5,597,772$  3,109,40844%
Edwin C. Ernst, CPA$  12,642,431$  5,518,31956%
Robert S. Kerr (U.S. Senator)$  20,800,000$11,300,00046%
A.H. Wiggin (Chairman, Chase Bank)$  20,493,999$  5,646,66672%
William E. Boeing$  22,386,158$11,796,41047%
Rick Nelson$       744,357$     506,63632%
Elvis Presley$  10,165,434$  2,790,79973%
Rock Hudson$    8,600,000$  3,926,28854%
James S. Kemper (Insurance Executive)$  10,948,356$  7,007,56036%
Nelson A. Rockefeller$  79,249,475$56,727,62828%
Conrad Hilton$199,070,700$93,288,48353%
Source: Public Probate Records

If these people, who had access to the best advice money could buy, were not able to avoid the "unwanted heirs" (federal and state estate taxes and estate administrative costs), it will be difficult for the rest of us to avoid estate settlement costs.

Proper advance planning, however, can minimize the impact of estate settlement costs on the value of your estate.  Please contact us at  discuss your situation so that you don't experience the same sort of estate shrinkage problems.

Comments (3)

Al Maxwell
Keller Williams - Marietta, GA
Real Estate Agent
I had to read your post a couple of times. I assume that you are saying that after death, the estate taxes and settlement costs reduced the estate down by this amount.
Aug 29, 2007 12:18 AM
Todd and Danielle Millar
Glenn Simon Inc. - Edmonton, AB
Nineteen years of excellence!
All the more reason to spend it all before you go! I don't want heirs like Paris Hilton.
Aug 29, 2007 12:19 AM
Jason Loveless

Al, that is correct.  With proper planning, the shrinkage can be avoided, or at least shrunk less. 

Also, to Todd & Danielle's comment, if you've got it, and don't want to give it to heirs like Paris, spending it down is an option, no doubt.  However, if you have another charity, hospital, church, etc that you like, make them the happy recipients!

Aug 29, 2007 01:15 AM