If you’ve ever seen a friend experience the loss of someone close, then you have likely witnessed the pain, sadness, confusion and overwhelming stress that person endured while making funeral arrangements. It can be extremely taxing to configure cost and fulfill your loved one’s wishes when emotions are running high. On the contrary, there are pre-planning steps you can take to ease the burden on the family members left behind.
“Preneed” is a term used to express the need for pre-planning your own funeral by means of prearranging and prefunding. Pre-planning your own funeral is important because it can alleviate the burden on your family of making important financial decisions during a time of great stress. It can also give you peace of mind because you know your arrangements are ready. It can also help you control the cost of the funeral and preserve it from inflation. There are a few steps to get the process started.
Get in contact with a local funeral director. Talk about different options. If a cremation funeral is what you want, there are factors to discuss:
• a viewing before the cremation
• the actual cremation
• urn choices
• the will
The Funeral Rule, enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), requires funeral directors to give you itemized prices in person and, if you ask, over the phone. It’s often beneficial for someone else go with you while making sensitive and important decisions. Your friend or family member might hear that you didn’t, or ask questions that you may not have thought about.
Something else that most people don’t realize, it is not legally required to use a funeral home to plan or conduct a funeral. Beyond funeral homes, the FTC suggests that arrangements can be made with a memorial society, which is a nonprofit organization providing information about funerals and disposition, but not offering actual funeral services; or directly with a crematorium.
Within the realm of pre-planning, pre-paying or funeral financing is also an option. Not everyone is financially ready to pay for the future funeral when making arrangements. Just bear in mind that prices fluctuate over time and businesses may unexpectedly close or change ownership. So, it is wise to re-examine your decision every few years.
Pre-planning your own or a loved one’s inevitable death is an extraordinarily sensitive and stressful experience. As difficult as it may be, it will give those who cared for you the ability to grieve and the relief not to endure the financial burdens during a death. Information about funerals is very important to In the Light Urns and we produce a great deal of helpful advice after losing a loved one.