Funeral Planning: Custom Caskets
If you’re funeral planning for a loved one, you’re going to come across a lot of different choices. Where do you want the memorial service held? What cemetery have you chosen for the interment of the final remains? Burial or cremation? In the most ideal cases, these questions will have already been answered for you via a pre-need funeral plan or the express wishes of the deceased. If not, you will hopefully have the support of other relatives and a funeral director you trust to help you make the right decisions.
If the deceased wished for a traditional burial, you will also need to choose a casket. This is one of the most personal purchases you will make during the funeral planning process, as it will become the final resting place of the deceased. And one way to make it even more personal is to go beyond the traditional options to choose a custom casket for sale.
Buying a Casket
Almost all funeral homes have a selection of caskets available for purchase through their own private showrooms. The options tend to be extensive; in addition to different materials (wood, metal) and different colors (ranging from pink or baby blue to black or mahogany), there are options to add personal touches. For example, you can:
• Change the color or material of the lining
• Add ornamentation or embellishments to the exterior
• Upgrade the hardware
• Include a drawer inside where you can place personal effects
These options can be a great way to personalize the funeral without added hassle; because everything goes through the funeral home, you never have to worry about delivery times, transportation, or not getting things just right.
However, you don’t have to purchase a casket through a funeral home. Many online providers (including such big names as Costco and Wal-Mart) sell discounted caskets with guaranteed two- or three-day delivery for last-minute funerals. This option can save you money and also widen your range of personal touches to create a custom casket.
Custom caskets that go a little beyond the norm are also available online and through some local funeral homes. Oversized caskets, themed caskets, and novelty caskets are becoming more common, and you can choose anything from a casket shaped like a car to a casket that doubles as a bookshelf for use while you are still living. Although these might seem a little informal for use during this somber event, they can be a great way to lighten the moment and really honor the deceased.
According to the Funeral Rule, funeral homes are required to accept caskets not purchased through their showroom, so you do have options when it comes to your purchase.
*Note: Before you purchase a novelty casket, be sure and talk with the cemetery of your choice to ensure that it meets their burial codes.
Choosing a Casket
The easiest way to ensure that you’ve made the right casket decision is always to have a funeral pre-plan in place that either specifies the wishes of the deceased or, better yet, has allowed the deceased to pay for the funeral in advance. However, if you do find yourself facing this difficult decision, be sure and consider all your casket options to find the best fit…even if that fit is a vibrant red casket with chrome details.