Memorial and funeral processes can be financially (funeral costs) and emotionally demanding, especially when friends and family are left to plan an unexpected funeral. End-of-life care can trigger emotions to arrange for the loved one or the elderly the death they aspire.
With feelings running high, essential choices must be made about how to lay a loved one to rest.
Since the COVID-19 struck America, the cost of funerals is only growing and at a very fast pace – pushing morgues, mortuaries, and funeral homes to their limits as they try to respond to the swelling demand.
These bizarre rises in funeral prices are undoubtedly putting enormous pressure on American families. However, it is not as challenging as one might envision trying to plan a low-cost funeral, one just has to know how – families can avoid being suddenly burdened with huge expenses.
Expensive funeral costs? 10 ways to avoid them
Pick on Direct Cremation Over Burial
It is an extremely personal pick between direct cremation and burial. But, to plan a more economical and straightforward funeral, it is wise to opt for direct cremation over burial. No service is held prior to direct cremation, as the cost of—casket, preparing the body, funeral service, extensive transportation—are avoided.
Additionally, the funeral home provides a reasonably priced container/urn that’s cremated with the body.
Moreover, a direct cremation allows the loved ones to postpone the memorial service, giving loved ones more time to make any arrangements. This can be a good way out for those who have family far and wide and who may need to travel a great deal of distance. It also allows for more time for loved ones to mourn and adjust to the loss.
Hold a Memorial Service
Think through holding a memorial service after the cremation has taken place. Crematoriums typically give the cremation ashes, also called cremains — in a plastic bag inside a plastic box. One may skip this purchase by providing a nice box or container from home.
Without the body present, there is no need for preserving or refrigeration, a decorative casket, or transporting the body to the funeral home, religious body, and gravesite.
Furthermore, without the time compression of preserving the body, one has the flexibility to hold the service whenever and wherever it’s suitable and convenient- the venue can be as simple as a friend’s backyard or public park.
Decide on Going Green
A green burial eliminates chemical additives associated with embalming and body preparation, customary heavy metal and wood caskets, and other sorts of costly modern burials. Going green offers grieving families less expensive decisions for containers, saving up a huge amount of money.
Deciding on the service of green burial can be as simple as draping the deceased in a cotton burial garment before lowering them into the ground. Additionally, this also benefits the gravesite as it is allowed to return to nature.
The aim is to complete the decomposition of the body and its natural return to the soil and save up on any additional costs that may otherwise incur.
Donation to Science
To bring your funeral costs to absolute zero, make a whole body donation to science. It is not only a great way to keep costs minimal, but also to be part of helping with significant medical training and research. Most research institutes and donation programs cover all sorts of transportation and cremation costs, hence, saving up thousands of dollars.
Though the process of donating the body may not celebrate the decedent’s life, it is one of the most wonderful ways to help future generations. Donating the whole body does not eliminate the option of having a memorial service in any way – only holding the service in the absenteeism of the body or cremated rests.
Do Research on Funeral Homes
Prices of funeral homes in an area can vary for the exact same list of services one is considering. Funeral homes are obliged to give general pricing information upon request. Before making any decision on selecting a local funeral home, one must conduct good research and collect all the quotes from different funeral homes that match the needs.
To save up on added costs, it is economical to purchase funeral items, such as caskets or liners from outside the funeral homes. By price shopping and purchasing few items from a third party, families can often save thousands of dollars without forfeiting any final preparations and funeral arrangements.
Opt for Online Services
Avoid announcing funerals on paper, i.e., funeral announcements, thank you cards, and obituaries. Instead, carry out these services online, and most are free of cost, by creating a memorial website. With a memorial website, one can share event details, collect RSVPs, send out thank you notes, and get in touch with their community, effortlessly.
Moreover, the benefit of having an unlimited amount of space for text and photos. Whereas, in the case of opting for print, one only has enough space for 2-3 sentences at a given price. By going online, sidestep on the short-printed tribute and instead post one online for free.
Shun Emotional Overspending
The bereavement of a loved one is a sensitive and overall emotional time. With effective pre-planning, picking a reliable funeral home, and engaging a trusted family member in the arrangement session is the finest way to escape emotional overspending and help in making sound financial decisions.
The key to saving up on funeral costs is to buy what one really needs. Don’t let the guilt and grieve overpower by purchasing the most expensive products as a way of showing others how much the deceased family member was loved.
Emotional overspending can mostly turn into spending a significant amount of money on funeral services, leaving savings exhausted, or perhaps even creating debt.
Pre-paying With Life Insurance Policies
The uncertainty of death is the reason for opting to preplan and prepay costs so that families and young children won’t have to make challenging and costly decisions while grieving. It will also make sure that the last wishes of the individual are carried out and, most of all, protect loved ones from large funeral debt.
Numerous life insurance policies can help pay for the decedent’s funeral or any other general financial needs of the survivor’s family. The payment is made momentarily after the death and doesn’t have to go through confirmation.
There’s also burial insurance, which is a policy projected to pay death-related costs, and pre-need insurance, a policy proposed to cover a reserved amount for a funeral.
Skip the Caterer (Definitely a Money Saver!)
Organizing a fine-looking memorial service on a budget is a goalmouth anyone can attain.
There are certainly numerous costs associated with a funeral of a loved one, but there are also various ways one can tackle to find reasonable options and make well-versed choices that make sense with the funeral budget and the emotional crisis one is going through.
Food is the last thing on the mind of the grieving members.
Potluck is a cost-efficient and friendly way of letting family and friends bring various dishes to the after-funeral reception. Death is a time where friends and extended members express compassion and contentment by bringing cards, flowers, and food to prompt backing and care.
Crowdfund the Funeral
Crowdfunding the funeral is a more contemporary approach to plummeting funeral costs. Rather than a single-family member carrying all the financial obligation, those that knew and were close to the departed can all donate to aid in covering the essential expenses.
This is one of the most favorable modes of covering the costs of a funeral and bringing people together to remember the departed.
When everyone has capitalized something into the funeral arrangements, then there is often a feeling of greater participation in the proceedings of the event. This also makes it likely for family and friends living abroad to sense connection and to fund more actively to the funeral.
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