Funeral services are an emotional thing to have to shop for. Despite the fact that it's an inevitable fact of life that we all need funeral services someday, planning a funeral for a loved one is going to be difficult emotionally and mentally. There are many factors to consider when planning a funeral. Even if you're planning for yourself to spare your loved ones the grief of having to make the difficult decisions after your passing, the business side of planning a funeral is bound to leave you emotionally drained. Unfortunately, your pocketbook is also likely to be drained. Funeral costs are on the rise.
The first step to planning a funeral service is to find the best prices. You'll want to shop around as it can save you thousands of dollars. Every funeral director is required to give you written, itemized price list for all of their products and services, including caskets. You should never be required to pay extra for any service that has been listed at a certain price in the list they gave you when you initially inquired. Similarly, you are never required to use a casket purchased with the funeral director conducting your services.
Most funeral directors offer packages for their services. These packages will often include basic funeral services without any bells and whistles. They might have a cremation package with a memorial service, a cremation package without a memorial service, a burial package with memorial service, and burial package without, for example. You might also wish to purchase funeral services a la carte, which can increase the value and personalization of the funeral service, but will likely cost thousands more. The choice is yours. If you aren't sure whether you should buy a funeral services package or purchase funeral services a la carte, take this quiz to help you decide.