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What You Need to Know While Funeral Planning

by Radhe Gupta
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Nothing is more difficult to endure than the passing of a loved one. And while you’re still grieving, you’ll also need to begin planning for the deceased’s funeral. Flowers, invitations, coffins—the list of things that must be taken care of can seem endless. To help ease the emotional burden of this overwhelming process, we’ve put together a helpful list of steps to take when planning for a funeral:

Find Out the Deceased’s Wishes

The first step is to find out if the deceased had a last will and testament. Very often, older individuals will have plans laid out for their funeral regarding such specifics as the location of the memorial service, the type of service (religious, secular, or military being the most common service types), whether they want to be buried or cremated, and where they want their remains laid to rest. You can click here to find the coffin that best suits your loved one’s requirements.

Contact the attorney or legal representative who handled the deceased’s estate and ask whether they left behind any funeral arrangements. Taking the guesswork out of the process can relieve some of the emotions brought up through having to choose every aspect of the funeral yourself. 

Budget for the Funeral

In many cases, the estate will cover the costs for the funeral services and arrangements. However, you still need to be aware of how much the funeral will cost. The average funeral can cost between $7,000 and $12,000, which can be a heavy debt to incur. Take into consideration the following costs:

  • Casket or coffin
  • Memorial service
  • Flowers and wreaths
  • Burial/cremation
  • Transportation fees for the deceased
  • Clothes for the deceased

Although you obviously want the best for your passed loved one, don’t break the bank on a funeral. Know how much you can afford, and how much the estate can pay, and allot specific amounts to each expense before booking any services or purchasing any products. Emotions can cloud judgment and make it easy to overpay. Keep in mind, especially when considering casket costs, that the FTC funeral rule entitles you to accurate pricing and information on the following: 

  1. The consumer’s right to select only the goods and services desired
  2.  Embalming
  3. Alternative containers for direct cremation
  4. The basic services fee
  5. The Casket Price List
  6. The Outer Burial Container Price List

Knowing your rights can help you get the best prices and avoid any upsell that will leave you overpaying. Also consider asking about payment plans so that you don’t have to pay full prices upfront. 

Scheduling the Funeral

After you’ve done your research and decided on the products and services you’ll be using, you need to consider the schedule for the funeral. Typically, a funeral is scheduled 1-2 weeks after death, but in current times with travel restrictions, it may not be feasible to have a funeral put together in just 2 weeks. Depending on religious beliefs, the deceased may need to be buried sooner, and a memorial service held later. Use the funeral home’s assistance in getting everything scheduled. Most funeral homes are open 7 days a week, and have funeral directors able to take over the scheduling and finer details.

We hope these considerations will help you during this difficult time. 

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