Advanced funeral planning isn’t just a matter of making sure your family is taken care of when you’re gone. Taking the steps in advance can save thousands of dollars on the overall cost of funeral services whether you choose burial or cremation. Here are just a few reasons why it’s financially beneficial to plan ahead.
You’re in a Better State to Negotiate
Funeral homes are at a serious advantage simply because many of their clients are pressed for time and not in the best headspace for making major purchases. When you only have a few days to plan a funeral and get everything done, you have to make do with what’s available a lot of the time.
Lack of time and being in an emotional state usually means that you end up paying more for services. By planning in advance you’re in a calmer state of mind and are looking at things more objectively. This puts you in a better position to make decisions that will save money when the services are actually needed.
You’ll Be Better Prepared for the Odd Funeral Fees That Add Up
Although there are federal consumer protections that require funeral homes to provide price itemized estimates, that doesn’t mean you won’t come across some unexpected fees. For the reasons stated above, you’re more likely to simply accept whatever is handed to you so that the funeral can proceed.
Do you really need to pay a $750 embalming fee?
Is a burial shroud necessary?
What if you don’t want printed funeral programs?
When you do notice an odd fee there isn’t much time to figure out if it’s really necessary and how much you should pay. You may question the fee when you see it, but with so much else going on it could simply be accepted because that’s what’s easiest to do in the moment.
Advanced planning allows you to explore each service or fee to determine if it’s something you want. Remember, the itemized estimate is just that. You have the right to turn down a specific service if you don’t feel like it’s needed.
Can Comparison Shop at Your Leisure
You may have heard that you can buy a nice casket at Costco for around $500. It’s very likely if you bought the same casket from a funeral home just a day or two after a loved one dies it would cost twice as much.
Planning ahead gives you the ability to comparison shop for a lot of the items that will be needed for burial or cremation services as well as a memorial. Use the FTC’s pricing checklist as a guide when you’re comparing prices.
Easier to Stick to a Budget
Many financial planners suggest that people set a budget for their funeral services. The median burial costs $7,640 and the median cremation costs $5,150. Those are good benchmarks for a funeral budget.
When you plan in advance you’ll be able to specify your wants down to the detail and know how much each item will cost. You may have to make some concessions if you find that the funeral services exceed your budget.
Direct Cremate keeps the cost of cremation straightforward and simple. If you’d like to discuss making advanced arrangements please contact us by phone or online.