The Last Respect: Tips on How to Lower Funeral Costs

A funeral is a nice way of remembering the life lived by a loved one – the reason why most people call it the 'last respect'. But even so, funerals can be quite expensive. According to an estimate by the National Funeral Directors Association, a traditional funeral can amount to $6,600; this is without cemetery services such as grave-site, which can cost an additional $3,000.

Therefore, you should consider ways in which you can lower your funeral expenses, and still prepare a ceremony that befits the deceased. Check out the following ways that explain how to keep the funeral costs down.

1. Inquire About Different Funeral Homes

Do not settle for the first funeral home you get on a hospital list, or the same funeral home you have been using every time a friend or a family member passes away. According to Joshua Slocum of the Funeral Consumer Alliance, comparing prices of at least three funeral homes can help you settle on a good deal.

He further says that if the funeral home you have chosen is managed by a big, corporate chain, you are likely to pay more money, and hence the need to inquire and make comparisons of funeral homes. Contact professional funeral homes like Chapel of the Holy Family, and compare costs that include casket prices, transport, and embalming prices.

2.Consider a Memorial Website

Memorial headstones and plaques are one way of saying some nice words about the deceased. On the other hand, they are costly. As an alternative, opt for a memorial website. Setting up a memorial is cheaper and gives you enough space where you can say more about the deceased.

3. A Funeral Director is not a Must

There is no law that forces you to hire a funeral director to handle your funeral arrangements. And most of the things that a director can do, you can do as well. For instance, arranging for transport is an easy task that you can carry out with the help of a few friends.

4. Avoid Unnecessary Services

Not all funeral services are necessarily required. For instance, a funeral home may typically embalm a body before a wake. But according to funeral rules by the Federal Trade Commission in the United States, unless a body is not cremated or if it is buried within a certain period of time, embalming may not be necessary.

Cemeteries also emphasize on the use of liners and casket vaults to prevent the sinking of graves. This is however not a must according to state laws. Check first with the laws of your region if certain services are necessary. If not, you can save by avoiding them.

You can also cut down your expenses by asking friends to volunteer as pallbearers instead of hiring funeral personnel.