The topic of funerals may be taboo and may not be the easiest thing to talk about, but pre-planning can actually give your family some type of peace of mind. They will not have to worry about the planning stages while they are grieving; and, they will not have to worry about where the money will come from to pay for the funeral. Here are some things you can do to pre-plan your funeral.
Meet with a Funeral Home Director
Not every funeral home will allow pre-planning, but many do. Make an appointment to sit down with a funeral home, like Pineview Funeral Service, to talk about the pre-planning stages. You can discuss your choices, select your casket, and choose the facility where you would like to be buried. Make sure that any agreements you make, including cost, are written out in a legal contract. Many times, the going rate of today's funeral services will be the cost of your funeral, even if if it is years away. That is one of the biggest advantages of pre-planning your funeral: you can lock down the costs--even if they go up in later years.
Discuss Your Payment Options and Terms
There are a few different ways you can pre-pay your funeral. Some funeral homes have the option of setting up a payment account where you can make monthly payments just as you would your car or home. Some do not, but there are a few different ways you can ensure your funeral will be paid for.
The first option is to set up a savings account at your bank, designating a trustee or "payable on death" beneficiary. The terms of this savings account would indicate that the money is to be used only for paying your funeral costs.
Another option is to take out a life insurance policy that is to be used specifically to pay your funeral costs. You would have to make sure you designate a beneficiary of the policy, or else the policy will become part of your estate. When this happens, it can be months after your death before the funds are finally disbursed.
Make sure you let a few family members know of your pre-planning intentions. Advise them of the funeral home, the contact person, and how you've decided to pay for the funeral. This may be a difficult conversation to have, but funeral planning now saves your family a lot of stress and grief later.
When my mom passed away, my dad and I were charged with the task of planning a funeral that everyone would love. Unfortunately, this would prove to be a difficult task, since many of my mom's relatives didn't speak English. We mulled over what to do, and we decided to meet with the funeral director for a few tips. He told us a few ideas for how to make the experience easy for everyone to understand, and we implemented his suggestions. It was incredible how much easier it made things on the day of the funeral. Read here for more funeral arrangement tips so that you aren't left stressing about more than you need to.