No one likes to think about let alone plan for the inevitable – death. However, at some point all of us will have to plan a funeral either for a loved one. The important thing to remember is that planning ahead saves stress, anxiety and yes even money when the inevitable does occur. In order to make smart decisions when the time comes, here are some tips to help you make those final arrangements.
- Learn what’s involved: There are a lot of moving parts to a funeral and if you have never planned or attended one it could be complicated. Just a small list of the processes involved includes the viewing of the body, the ceremony itself including the eulogy, the actual internment, etc. Decisions must be made as to who to invite and how and when each guest will arrive. To help you there are several online funeral checklists available throughout the Internet.
- Plan in advance: These multiple steps are best handled when one prepares early. Look for a reliable funeral home that can give you an idea of the steps and costs involved in arranging a funeral.
- Write everything down: Simplify the process with a bit of organization. Write down each process and what you will need to do in order to accomplish your goals. Also, write down what you expect others who are involved in planning the services to do. This will not only help avoid any later confusion during the actual ceremony, it will also help you avoid arguments on this most solemn of occasions.
- Start saving early: According to most estimates, funerals cost around $7,000 and $10,000. This makes them one of the largest expenses that most people will ever incur in life. Call funeral homes in advance to compare the prices and services among them. See what can be done to lower costs without sacrificing quality. Generally, funeral homes pricing is competitive and most directors will work with your budget.
- Consider joining a memorial society: The AARP recommends that people who are planning funerals join one of the many nonprofit organizations out there that will help and guide you in the process. For a one time membership fee you can buy into one of these organizations that will help you negotiate discounts with funeral homes, planning, etc.
In short, that occasion that no one likes to think about can be made a little less painful and confusing with a little planning. Plan for this important end of life event while you are thinking clearly and are not filled with grief. Moreover, you can show your dedication to the departed with one of our memorial tree plaques. A tree memorial is a symbol of the departed that will last long past the actual ceremony.