The average cost of a funeral in the United States is $7,360, though it can greatly vary depending on the location. In fact, in many states, the average cost of a funeral is around $20,000. No matter where you’re located, budgeting for your final expenses is likely to be an expensive and large undertaking — though it doesn’t have to be morbid or uncomfortable when planning ahead. In fact, there are several benefits to doing so that makes it a great investment of your time. From the peace it can bring your family to allowing you to fulfill your final wishes, here’s what you need to know.
Says Tina Jackson an independent insurance agent ” Many families truly have no idea of the costs involved to cover a family member’s funeral expenses. Instead of taking out a final expense insurance policy, many people think a Go Fund Me fundraiser is the correct way to cover expenses. Don’t be one of these types of people. Be smart, and financially responsible and have an insurance policy in place.”
The benefits of planning ahead
Planning ahead in terms of budgeting for your final end of life costs can seem like a morbid thing to even think about, though it’s important to realize that there are several benefits to doing so. For instance, by planning ahead yourself, you can save your family time, pain, stress and additional worry as they’re grieving, and instead bring them peace of mind that you’ve already taken care of the expenses. Budgeting yourself can also help to save money in the long run, as many times families tend to overspend on a funeral. And, since you’ll be planning and budgeting yourself, you can ensure you’ll have the exact kind of funeral that you want (whether it be traditional, alternative, or even eco-friendly, etc.), which can allow you to further fulfill your final wishes.
When planning ahead for end of life finances, it’s important to budget accordingly. One way to get started is to inform yourself on the costs and expenses you can expect, which can be done by reaching out to your choice of funeral home and requesting an itemized cost list (this can be especially helpful in getting an idea of location-specific costs). Additionally, you may find yourself asking: “What is covered by burial insurance?” If you’ve recently acquired a new policy, asking this question early can help your family in covering your final expenses later on. In such cases, reaching out to your provider can give you an idea as to what the policy covers so that you can budget properly.
Expenses to expect
Depending on the kind of funeral you want to have, there are a number of things you’ll need to consider when planning ahead, as there are several options. In addition to cremation vs. burial options (in which you can expect the cost of an urn or casket), headstones, burial plots, embalming, transport, the service itself, and even the makeup that the funeral home uses are all additional expenses you may have to take into consideration when budgeting, should you choose to implement them. However, if you wish to save money in some regards, you may be able to do so by having a direct burial/cremation, which cuts out the cost of some things, like embalming and makeup.
Budgeting for your end of life costs can seem like a morbid thing to do, though it can prove to be extremely helpful to your family after you pass. In addition to ensuring they won’t have to deal with the stress of planning your service while grieving, you can guarantee that you’ll get the funeral you want — making it a smart and savvy endeavor to get ahead on.