Funeral planning in advance is a great way to save your loved ones time, money, and much of the burden of decision-making. However, like most large decisions, it’s important to take the time and preparation necessary to ensure that you make choices that will benefit everyone you care about – after all, the number one reason people choose funeral planning is to make sure that things are easier for the family left behind to grieve and mourn.
The top five considerations when creating a funeral pre-plan include:
1. Know your funeral planning options. There are many different types of funeral pre-plans out there, including funeral insurance, burial plot purchases, and fully covered funeral programs. You will want to determine what type is right for you and consider the pros and cons of each before making a decision.
2. Shop around. One of the reasons funeral costs are so high is that few families have the option to shop around. Due to the amount of grief and stress that occurs at the time of the death of a loved one (not to mention how fast burials typically occur), most people choose a funeral home
at random and agree to whatever is set out in front of them. When you pre-plan a funeral, you have time on your side. Shop around to find a funeral home and cemetery you like. Find the lowest prices on caskets and find out for yourself if you want to have a burial liner or vault.
3. Lock in rates. No matter which type of funeral pre-plan you choose or what funeral home you decide on, be sure to look for a way to lock in today’s rates. Funeral costs have risen steadily over the past few decades, and they are likely to continue doing so. If you are going to take the steps to pre plan your funeral, it is definitely worthwhile to do what you can to save money down the road.
4. Consider non-traditional burial methods. In today’s society, there are so many different ways to have your remains disposed of. Cremation, traditional burial, shooting your remains into space, being buried at sea, donating your body to science…there is so much more to body disposal than what we are taught to consider. While many of these options might not appeal to you, you do have time to look at the different choices and consider something that might not have occurred to you before.
5. Talk with family members. Although it is your funeral, your loved ones will be in charge of making sure everything comes together. No amount of funeral planning can replace simply making your wishes known and clear to those who matter.
Although it might seem counterintuitive, funeral planning is a time for celebration. Taking the time to consider what your life (and ultimately your death) means and sharing with loved ones your visions for the future can break down a lot of barriers and bring you closer together. There is also a
large amount of acceptance that comes from advance planning a funeral, since you are forced to come face-to-face with the realities of death. As long as you are being proactive and taking the right steps to pre-plan a funeral, you might as well enjoy it and do your best to save both money and time for those you love.