are funeral costs a concern?
Funeral expenses can escalate rather quickly, leading to substantial financial pressures on the bereaved.
Although some individuals are willing to pay whatever the funeral home charges, budget-friendly alternatives still exist. It is important to bear in mind that funeral homes operate on a profit-centric basis. As a result, they may encourage customers to utilise their services to the maximum extent possible.
SDF was established to assist families who desire to manage their funeral costs without sacrificing the quality of professional funeral services. They specialise in providing compassionate, professional care to families who are cost-conscious.
An affordable funeral can still be a great occasion and a suitable farewell..
Here are some things you may like to consider, if you are looking at keeping costs down.
Embalming is not essential, particularly if the burial or cremation takes place within a few days. For some individuals, seeing their loved one after they have passed away is important, and if this can occur within a day or two, embalming is unnecessary. Furthermore, often after embalming, the person no longer resembles themselves. Many individuals choose to remember their loved ones when they were alive, but for some, seeing them after they have passed away is important.
The only time embalming is genuinely necessary is if there are several days before the funeral, and occasionally if the body begins to deteriorate quickly or has been physically damaged, such as in a car accident. Additionally, one aspect to consider is the comments from people who prefer to be laid to rest or cremated with their blood instead of it being drained away and substituted with chemicals.
If you want a traditional funeral service, such as in a church, there are things you can do to save money without compromising quality. Naturally this will take more time and effort – but it is very doable to save costs.
- Contacting a florist directly is easy and they can arrange flowers as you want. Or bring your own. Or have even have no flowers.
- Service sheets aren’t really necessary because churches have screens that display song lyrics and hymns. However, if you want service sheets, you can design them yourself using online templates and have a local printer make copies.
- For the registry book, you can buy your own and put it out on a table for people to sign.
- While cups of tea were traditionally served after funerals, this is no longer necessary. Often churches can provide refreshments, or you can contact a caterer directly.
For some people trying to organise a funeral alongside dealing with grief and loss is just too hard. This is completely understandable. For others, it is a way of being part of this final event.
Keep in mind that a funeral service can be anything you like. At its core a funeral is remembering the person and being with family and friends. A very simple funeral service can also be incredibly meaningful.
Does the coffin need to be at the funeral service? Many people are choosing to have a private cremation or burial first, then the service later. There are many benefits to this. Visit Memorial Services to read more about this.
If the coffin isn’t at the service, then there is no need for the hearse or funeral directors to be there.
Often a family will have the urn there or a picture board, etc as a focal point. Even with a burial, you can still have a funeral service after without the coffin.
A coffin has become a bit of an extravagance that funeral homes have taken advantage of. But why pay thousands of dollars for a coffin? Many coffins are over-priced and there are alternatives.
Things you can do with a plain coffin:
- put a cloth cover over it
- paint it / decorate it / write on it
- place lots of flowers on it
- place photos on it
The coffin does not reflect the person inside, or the love for that person even though funeral homes promote this because of the commission they get selling them. I think of the pearl inside a oyster.
In the past, funerals were conducted by the minister and the undertaker, and everyone else went along for the ride. Today, there are many alternatives.
A funeral service can be held almost anywhere. Places like conference centres often won’t charge if they can do the catering.
The service could also be held at a park or in a home. The key is to keep in mind where the person and the family feel most comfortable. The location is up to you.
Some people opt for a private committal service with close friends and family followed by coffee or lunch. This can be simple, respectful, and exactly what the family wants. There is no right or wrong way to conduct a funeral service.
There have been terrible traditional funeral services and fantastic non-traditional services. So, focus on the things that matter to you such as who will lead, the speakers, the music, etc.
A funeral celebrant is also an excellent option as they have lots of ideas and their costs are lower than a funeral home.
A quiet, small funeral service is entirely acceptable if that’s what feels right. Some people choose not to have a service, but it’s suggested to mark the passing of a loved one in some way, even if it’s just a walk along the beach.
This is the new (old) fad so people far away can be there. If you hire someone for this, which is what most funeral homes do, this can be quite expensive.
For smaller funerals I have had families use their phones and people watching through this. There is no cost.
Perhaps even better is to record the service on a phone. Sending video is very easy today. Plus you have a recording of it also.
Again, you could hire someone, but today’s phone technology means it is easy to do (ask a teenager).
I know that not being there in person can be hard and technology has its place. These suggestions are for those who want ideas to cut these costs.
Like any business there are good and bad operators. At the end of the day a funeral director is a businessperson. As such, the bottom line is a huge focus – even if they say it isn’t, it is.
The funeral home would like to do as much as they can for the family. That is why they built chapels and offer catering on their premises. Because the more they can do, the more they can charge.
A main task a funeral director does is transporting the body. They collect it from the hospital or home and take it to the funeral home. Then they take the person, in the coffin, to the funeral service or their last destination – burial or cremation.
They do this because transporting a body and a coffin is tricky. Some families have done this, but for many – it is something they don’t even want to think about doing themselves.
Organising the paperwork is often what ultimately puts people off doing the funeral themselves. There is information online that can help. My suggestion is if you are thinking about organising the funeral, then do your research into what paperwork you need well in advance. Don’t leave it to the last minute, because it will be too hard.
Funeral homes generally won’t just do the paperwork without any other involvement. Just like they often won’t sell only a coffin, because they want the opportunity to do more and therefore earn more. We are happy to help in anyway – including just the paperwork.
Keep in mind that everything a funeral home does for you will cost money. Flowers, service sheets, viewings… the list can go on and on.
As mentioned before – if you are having a service with just the ashes you don’t need a funeral director there.
In many cases a funeral celebrant or even a family friend is more than capable to run a service for you.
Keep in mind that funeral directors will use tactics to encourage people to do more. There are terms and phrases that really puts the pressure on families to do more than perhaps they first wanted. Check out the blog 15 Things Funerals Homes don’t want you to know.
“When planning a funeral, there are various options that families explore without breaking the bank.
At Simple Direct Funerals, we are committed to providing families with affordable packages that still meet their needs and honor their loved ones. Our mission is to create a respectful and meaningful ceremony that celebrates life without incurring excessive costs.
We understand how important a dignified funeral is, and we strive to facilitate this process for you. Our goal is to provide a personalized and beautiful service that stays within your budget. We are here to support you and your family during this difficult time and give you peace of mind.”