When it comes to making your end of life arrangements there is one important and over riding principle to remember… “Do Your Research!”
There is nothing more challenging than setting out to make funeral arrangements for a loved one when your emotions are running wild and you have no plan and no idea what to do or what to ask for. One way around this uncomfortable and often needlessly expensive experience is to do your research and planning well in advance. Here are several tips that might help you do so.
Go to two or three funeral homes, a family owned and operated one, and one or two owned and operated by multination organizations such as SCI or Arbor Memorial. Interview them and ask some questions you would like answered in order that you can create arrangements that suit your family’s needs and budget. I know, I know, what questions should we ask? Here is a short list:
- Is viewing necessary and important?
- Does cremating my loved one mean there is no funeral?
- What is the difference between a niche and a cemetery plot? Financially?
- Is embalming necessary?
- What is the least expensive cremation container I can purchase?
- Can I rent a casket for the viewing and use a less expensive container for the burial or cremation?
- If I choose to use your funeral services what can I expect from you?
- I am a member of the Memorial Society of BC. Do I get a discounted price?
- Which is more environmentally friendly burial or cremation and what is a green burial?
- What will it cost me for a burial or for a cremation? And please give me a range from least expensive to most expensive so I can choose what works for our budget.
There are likely more questions you could ask and they will likely surface when you are having your informational meeting with the funeral homes. The important thing is you are doing some important research, gathering information and getting some ideas that might fit for you and your family. It is not at all necessary to make a decision immediately and you can let the funeral director know that you will get back to them once you have made a decision.
Also do some research regarding payment: payment plans, prepaying or simply making arrangements without payment until services are required. The financial side of the planning and arrangements process is important too. So do make certain if you do choose to prepay who holds your money until it is earned; also make sure that your family knows the arrangements have been prepaid. Prepayment is not necessary. Have a look at this article to get more information and ideas on prepaying for your funeral arrangements;
Feel free to call our office staff if you feel the need to discuss the whole idea of doing your research first.
The Staff Team