The inevitability of losing a loved one can create a considerable amount of stress and worry for many families. While many surviving families make an effort to celebrate the deceased by way of a ceremony and funeral, it is also a fact that the cost of funerals can add to the burden of surviving family members. Are there ways to reduce funeral costs?
Who pays for the funeral?
The cost of the funeral should be the first expense taken off of the estate. If the urgency of the situation calls for someone to pay for the funeral first, the relative who paid for the funeral has the priority to claim from the estate once other debts are secured. Surviving relatives should always check with the executor of the estate to find out if there is enough money to cover the funeral. To reduce the cost of the funeral, the executor and beneficiaries may discuss any variations that can be done to the wishes of the deceased.
Take care of unavoidable costs
There are costs associated with a funeral that cannot be avoided. For example, if the body is to be cremated a doctor’s certificate is required. The NHS does not pay for death certificates except in rare cases when the hospital chooses not to charge. You can also forego paying for an obituary in the newspaper because there is no legal requirement to advertise the death of an individual.
Compare funeral director prices
There are available websites online that allow you to compare services offered by different funeral directors in your area. Local funeral providers often have their services listed in these websites for convenient access from potential clients. If you avail of a funeral package with bundled services, you may be able to save on some unnecessary costs. Keep in mind that you are under no obligation to use the services of a funeral director. But, the advantage of hiring a funeral director is that once you have one on board, you need not worry about every little detail as this will be arranged for you. All you need to do is to make the decisions when choices are laid in front of you.
Don’t embalm the body
Some researchers found that embalming can be hazardous to the environment. In fact, in some cultures, direct burials are practiced. Depending on where you stand on this matter, you can forego embalming altogether. If viewing is not important, you can have a burial arranged at short notice and avoid the additional cost of embalming the body.
Opt for a non-cemetery burial
Burial plots are very expensive and are always in high demand especially in crowded cities like London. A cheaper alternative would be a natural burial ground or cremation.
Choose a less traditional coffin
Once the coffin is buried, you are likely never going to see it again. Choose more eco-friendly coffins rather than those made from metal or hardwood.
Keep it simple
The service and the wake should be kept simple and solemn. There is no need for extravagant ceremonies. The most important aspect of the funeral is that friends and family should be able to pay their respects and say their final goodbyes.
There are many other ways by which funeral costs can be reduced. These days, families are becoming more conscious about making sure that costs for funerals don’t end up as another liability.