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Simple Direct Funerals

Why choose us?

Five years ago Simple Direct Funerals started as Purely Cremations.  To be fair I started then, but I didn’t have the first funeral for a few more months.  Which was fine by me because I was very nervous.

I was working at BP and at the same time as putting this business together.  Although it was just me, I did fine great support from other people.  But ultimately the buck stopped with me.

When I faced challenges I had to decide whether to face them or give up.  I realised that facing the challenges wasn’t too bad and if you worked at it things tended to work out.  

I didn’t start working full-time at SDF for several months – so it was a case of juggling coffees at BP with coffins at SDF.  Then the day came when I could leave BP and I was on my own.  I don’t miss those early morning starts.

There was so much I learnt.  First – tax is a b***h – it just never stops.  After I had registered for GST – I discovered all kinds of other taxes.  Sometimes it felt like I was working for the IRD.  But on the flip-side – paying taxes means you are also making money.

Like many small businesses the competition reacted quickly.  I was only interested in providing a low-cost simple funeral.  I wasn’t interested in the bigger more typical funerals people think of.

 

But they didn’t like the idea of me taking a small piece of their pie and tried to undercut my prices, while others created a separate business that looked exactly like mine.

I guess that meant I had a good idea – but it was annoying too.  Before they were more than happy to charge whatever they could and now they are advertising affordability and simple – copy cats!!

5 year anniversary

I think what my dozens of families have thought about SDF isn’t just the low-cost, but more the way I helped them arrange a funeral.  It was relaxed, straight-forward, professional and they knew exactly what was happening – no surprises.

I want to make death a little more natural and not so scary or foreign.  I wanted to reduce the stress and focus on the positives – like celebrating the life, enjoying the good memories, supporting one another…

I know there is grief and pain and uncertainty.  But death is a reality and hopefully being able to face and manage it a little better is a good thing.  So I was happy for families to be involved as much as they wanted.  Or if saying goodbye to them before I transferred them was just as significant.  In some cases people wanted to remember the person alive.  There is no right or wrong – it is doing what is right for you.

I wanted families to feel that whatever they decided to do was right for them.  I didn’t want or need them to spend or do more with the underlying pressure that this would be better for them. 

This is a unique business where you can’t really predict sales too far ahead.  There were weeks when I had nothing and then suddenly I was almost rushed off my feet.  There never seems to be any pattern to it.  So it does feel a little fickle – but I realising that this is just the nature of the industry.  I just have to live with this uncertainty. 

I hope that I will still be around for the next five years (and more).  I know if I wasn’t the affordable funerals will quietly fade away and prices will rise as before.

So my goals for the next five years is to basically keep doing what I am doing.  Limit stress and expense for families, encourage them to do what they want, and provide a service that families appreciate.

I want to thank all those families who chose SDF.  I do not take that for granted at all.  I am humbled and grateful to you all.