Losing a loved one is never easy, especially in the event of an unexpected death. Dealing with the grief from the loss can be overwhelming enough, to make matters worse you find yourself having to set up the funeral arrangements. This just adds another stressor to an already stressful situation. We hope this guide to setting up funeral arrangements can help put your mind at ease during this difficult moment.
What Were the Wishes of the Deceased?
The first step to arranging a funeral is to understand the wishes and beliefs of the deceased. This may come in the form of a declared will, or perhaps you or a relative have discussed this with them beforehand. For many people, their religious beliefs will influence the type of services that you will be looking for.
Determine Your Budget
It is important that you determine how much you can afford to spend when setting up the funeral arrangements. If the deceased had a life insurance policy the money for the funeral can come from there. Many first-time shoppers are surprised by the expenses involved in setting up a funeral. The
average price for a funeral and burial in the United States is $7,360. You will have to decide what you can afford without putting too much financial strain on yourself, and use this budget to determine what services you can afford.
A Traditional Funeral, Memorial Service, or Celebration of Life
You will need to determine which type of service you wish to hold in order to honor the life of the deceased. A traditional funeral involves the process of embalming the deceased and preparing them for a viewing. Then there will be a funeral service, usually held in a church. If you are looking for a more affordable option, you can opt for a memorial service instead of the traditional funeral with a viewing wake. If you are not beholden to normal traditions, you can forgo the costs associated with renting a funeral home and opt for a celebration of life ceremony. Ultimately the choice of which type of ceremony you opt for will depend upon your situation there is no right or wrong answer here. Consider the wishes of the deceased, the opinions of other family members, and the budget you have already established.
Cremation or Burial?
The next step will be to determine the post-death disposition method that you will use. Will you opt for a traditional burial or a cremation? Cremation has become an increasingly popular choice in recent years, as it has actually become more common than a burial. There are different costs associated with both choices, but cremation is usually the more affordable option. Depending upon the type of cremation service you choose, you could save thousands of dollars. If you choose direct cremation, for example, you could end up paying less than $1,000 depending on where you live. To learn more about direct cremation services, click here.
Contact Several Funeral Homes
Now that you have completed the checklist and determined which services you are looking for you can begin to contact some local funeral homes in your area. There are many different ways to find funeral homes in your area to contact, you can ask friends or family for their recommend, or simply search Google for funeral homes near you. From there we recommend you come up with a list of 3-5 funeral service providers in your area. Talk to them about what you are looking for and what your budget is. They will be able to talk you through the funeral options available to you based upon your needs and give you a quote. From there you simply choose whichever option best fulfills your wants and needs depending upon your situation.