Cover Costs Funeral
Dwelling on the future passing of yourself or a loved one is no easy task. However, just like when discussing life insurance or a will, deliberating the dealings of a funeral can be a delicate but necessary process. This past year alone, the average funeral cost was $8,000, which can be a heavy burden upon the family and friends of the deceased. This is why thinking about funeral costs beforehand is important. Some common funeral expenses are embalming or cremation, viewing, burial, remains transfer, service fee, and other costs. The earlier the plan is prepared, the easier it will be for all parties involved. Here are a few ways in which you can cover the costs of a funeral.
1) Plan The Service Desired:
Before you choose any of these options, determine what kind of service you prefer. Maybe you or a family member wants all or only a few of these options: cremation, casket, burial plot, headstone or marker, funeral flowers, and a hearse. This will determine the policy or budget needed.
2) Invest in Burial Insurance:
If you all have decided upon a full funeral service for you or your loved one, consider burial insurance. Burial insurance covers the cost of either funeral or cremation fees. Unlike life insurance, burial insurance is used directly for the ceremony, and may not have as many hoops to jump through as life insurance can have (which will be discussed below). In contrast to life insurance, funeral insurance does not have the same qualifying limitations, which may be a better option for those who cannot afford or qualify for life insurance. Just like with any insurance policy, there are different methods of payment that differ according to the policy you want.
3) Use Life Insurance:
Life insurance is one of the ways you can cover some of the funeral costs. Generally, the policy insures that a particular beneficiary will get the proceeds at the insurance holder’s death. Once those proceeds are bestowed, it is up to the beneficiary to use it for whatever he or she pleases—including a funeral. The one thing to keep in mind about life insurance, however, is that timing is everything. If you are considering using life insurance to help cover funeral expenses, look into the company’s policy to ensure that money is bestowed in a timely manner. Contact the insurer with any questions as to how quickly you will get paid.
4) Disclose Your Budget:
If you or a loved one experiences unexpected death or has a terminal illness, you or your family may not be prepared if you do not already have a policy. If this is the case, share with your funeral provider what you can afford. If you have a budget, there is a chance that they can accommodate it and give you options on what they can provide for you.
5) Choose Wisely:
No matter which method you choose, there is almost always a way to cut costs initially by choosing which costs are worth it to you or respect the wishes of a loved one. All of the fees of a funeral are already expensive, but they can lower if you pick cheaper means of burial. For example, caskets can be pricey—up to four thousand dollars or more—but you can get a cheaper one if you choose. Flowers can be expensive as well in addition to other services. Choose what costs can be renegotiated among you for a lower budget.
6) Consider Alternatives:
As opposed to a traditional funeral with casket, service, and burial, consider alternatives. If you or a loved one is open to the decision, reflect on alternative services such as cremation. This service generally costs about $2,000—a quarter of what a burial service would cost—and is still covered by most burial insurance. A service can still be held just like that of a traditional funeral. The family may choose to keep the ashes, bury them, or scatter them in a desired location. Alternatively, there is always the option to donate the body to science. In many cases, the lab will return the ashes to the family in several weeks. Ultimately, find the service that works best for you and your family in order to be sensitive to everyone’s needs and desires.