There are significant costs involved in sourcing graveyard flowers (and that expense is often unexpected) so here are some ideas on pre-planning a funeral.
People usually find it difficult to accept their own mortality, the fact that one day we shall cease to exist is almost unthinkable to us, but it is also inevitable. We all plan for our death, for instance making a will is a part of accepting the fact that one day we shall be no more, so we leave our precious worldly belongings to our loved ones, those who brought us joy and happiness. Making funeral plans for oneself can initially be quite a difficult task to do, but there are many benefits to making one’s own funeral plans.
Irrespective of the fact that we admit it or not, we all would like to have our funerals in a particular manner, and prepaid funeral plans allow us that unique opportunity. Death usually leaves those close to the deceased shattered and in tears, and yet they have to handle the burden of making funeral arrangements like using graveside crosses. When one takes care of their own funeral arrangement, it allows the kin and kith of the deceased to mourn in peace without having to worry about funeral arrangements.
Funeral plans can be arranged with the help of a funeral service director. A funeral director is expected to be knowledgeable about all funeral rituals, services as well as requirements. The entire ceremony planning and arrangement can be made with the help of a funeral director so that your loved one does not have to worry about arranging as well as paying for your funeral service. Funeral plans often allow one to decide on how they would be embalmed and what they would be dressed in while being interred into a casket for eternity.
One can decide to be cremated or buried. If there was a special kind of flower from Silky Flower Store that one liked, let it be the center of the floral decor. One can decide on the kind of memorial card and book for their loved ones. The price of the funeral is also finalized and paid so that your loved ones do not have to worry about a thing.
Because we were never willing to accept the possibility of a loved one, we did not think about planning in advance for this incomprehensible loss, we had no idea where to begin or who we could turn to.
At best, you might have started your estate planning process by creating a Will or Trust. So by having a Will or Trust, you have clearly taken a step in the right direction toward pre-planning your future financial wishes. The problem is, this form of planning fails to accomplish the most important task, which is addressing your family’s immediate concerns.
The person, or in most cases people, responsible for taking care of your final arrangements are usually forced to make extremely important decisions, as well as major financial purchases, very quickly. Of course, you cannot expect to fully alleviate the emotional and financial stresses of your loved ones during such a difficult time, but you can help them tremendously by having a plan that outlines your funeral wishes.
Funeral pre-planning gives you the ability to choose your method of disposition, the exact type of services you want, and allows your family to focus more on things such as grieving and recovery. Emotionally, it is much more likely that you will create a more rational and logical end-of-life plan.
When preplanning your funeral, here are several general guidelines to begin your preplanning process:
- See several funeral homes
- Be aware and informed of bereavement entitlements such as veterans, unions, fraternities, etc.
- Consider religious and moral convictions, and discuss them with your family
- Determine your method of disposition (burial, cemetery, entombment, cremation, etc.)
- Think about casket viewing, religion, and guests
- Itemize your costs
- The Federal Trade Commission offers a free funeral planning guide titled “Caskets and Burial Vaults” (202-326-2222) which has made it easier for consumers to comparison shop.
Savings Although many people choose to set aside savings to pay for funeral expenses, there are several reasons this does not always end up working out as originally planned. First, the amount available can be reduced by say health issues. Second, these funds are not always readily available and liquid upon death due to the challenges and restrictions often found in estate planning. Third, the funds set aside can often be insufficient due to inflation and the rising cost of funeral expenses. Finally, it should be noted that savings are included in a part of one’s estate, and, thus, the taxable consequences can often come into play.
Life Insurance Term Life Insurance is widely considered to be a flexible, simple, and affordable way to pay for your final funeral expenses. Although Term Life Insurance has a set term, or set number of years, it also has multiple uses in prepaying for your funeral. Because upon your death it becomes a liquid asset that is usually not part of your estate, it can be used for many things such as a funeral, burial, cremation, liquidity, and many other things, including debts or obligations.
In addition, there are some types of life insurance that allow the funds contributed to these policies (either in a lump sum, monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or annually) to grow and accumulate as a cash value that can be accessed if necessary. Therefore, these policies can not only be used for funeral expenses, but also for other financial planning options that may arise such as financial emergencies, college, etc.
Funeral Insurance Funeral insurance is an insurance policy that is specifically designed to cover any costs or expenses which are directly related to your funeral. If you purchase one of these policies, one of the options you have is to determine exactly which funeral costs or expenses are to be covered, such as flowers, burial plot, grave marker, and much more. Another option you have is for the policy to be paid out in a single lump-sum, which can be used to cover your pre-determined costs or expenses, or simply help your loved ones financially as they plan for you. There are many insurance companies that offer funeral insurance packages, and certain funeral homes or funeral companies also offer policies.
Pre-Need Trust Agreements Another alternative to prepaying your funeral is to consider a Pre-Need Trust Agreement to pay for your costs or expenses. Generally speaking, these Trust accounts are typically funded with monthly payments that are invested in a fund that is designed to grow over time. Although a Trust account is designed to provide the potential for protection against inflation, it is not guaranteed to do so.
In summary, although nobody likes to think or talk about dying, it is one of the facts of life we all must eventually face. If you are trying to build a successful financial plan, the only way you can be sure your plan works smoothly and efficiently is to be proactive about your planning process. This is particularly true and necessary when creating a proper plan of succession, which I firmly believe should include an end-of-life plan.