While funerals are unique and differ depending on what loved ones want or the wishes of the deceased, it’s very expensive to arrange one. Apart from dealing with grief and loss, you must contemplate the ever-soaring funeral costs. In the UK today, arranging a funeral is more expensive than ever before. According to a SunLife report on the cost of dying in 2004, a funeral cost stood at £1,920. Today, the price has increased by a staggering 122 per cent to a whopping £4,271 in just 15 years.
Funeral cost is determined by the location, funeral director expenses, casket or coffin type, transport, service option among other extras desired from wake catering to flowers.
Funeral director costs
One of the things determining the cost of a funeral is the fee of the funeral director. Funeral director cost encompasses diverse funeral arrangement facets such as overseeing before, during and after arrangements of the funeral.
Others include supervision of the occasion and directing mourners attending the funeral, caring for the deceased as fast as possible after demise, executing personal instructions and requirements provided, offering modern air-conditioned mortuary equipment to hold the deceased and preparing and caring for the loved one, providing casket/coffin, hearse, funeral wreaths and much more.
Funeral director fees are arguably the heart of the funeral arrangements. Costs vary, and you have the right to choose the best package and type of funeral director you’re comfortable with.
Funeral costs also include external payments at times referred to as third-party charges. These extra costs are managed by the funeral service provider and added to your cost. The costs differ a lot and depend on the location of the deceased and choice of either burial service or cremation, among others.
Burial charges: Include anything from officiant fee, EROB (exclusive right of burial), internment, headstone addition or removal, monument maintenance costs, church fees and masonry memorial creation, and much more.
Cremation charges: Includes local crematorium fees, officiant costs, ashes internment, ashes scattering, doctors fee, cremation document costs, among others.
Check to see that extra payments also include all documentation and payments coordination allowing a funeral to proceed legally as required by law.
As you would expect, funeral costs are incomplete without certain optional expenses always needed in the process. Luckily, the cost of optional expenses hasn’t changed much. Such expenses include hiring a venue, memorial, hiring a limousine or processional cars, catering, death notices, flowers, and service cards, among others.
You can actually lower the total costs by catering for some of the optional charges yourself rather than use the funeral service provider. Limo hire or transport in general, flowers and venue hire for instance, can be sourced directly.
Not everyone can afford the rising charges of a decent funeral. Help can be offered via charities or your local council, which plan public health funerals where the estate lacks sufficient funds to cater for the expenses or the deceased doesn’t have friends or relatives to plan the funeral.
Do you get certain benefits and need aid in paying for a funeral? Check Gov.uk on how you can get help in offsetting certain costs such as burial fees, cremation charges, doctor’s certification, transport costs, death certs among others.
With rising costs or not you don’t need to get into debt or spend all your savings. A dignified, respectable and affectionate funeral doesn’t need to be expensive. For instance, cremation makes sense because a burial always costs more. Rather than funeral director, make the funeral arrangements on your own.
Funeral packages differ so much, shop around, compare services and costs and request quotes from different service providers and select the most affordable. Request your friends and family to offer some of the services, such as catering. Rather than a memorial plaque create an online memorial. You can also bury the loved one in natural burial areas like woodlands rather than a typical cemetery. You can find more intimate settings to be buried at the Natural Death Centre.
Mind the region
Funeral costs aren’t uniform around the UK. Some places are so expensive for a variety of reasons. As of 2018, London remains the most expensive at £5,880 with South West England, South East and East England and Yorkshire and the Humber following closely at £4,685, £4,469 and £4,459 respectively. The most affordable areas include North West England at £3,945, Wales at £3,538, and Northern Ireland is the least expensive at £3,231.
Plan ahead and purchase a funeral plan well in advance to lock in the expenses of a funeral service at today’s cost.