Guest contribution by Tania Tack, Licensed Funeral Pre-Planner with Basic Funerals and Cremation Choices.
Planning for the future is just good sense, and that future includes the inevitable - a funeral. Funerals are changing and as communities become more diverse, death is observed in many different ways. A final good-bye can be a basic cremation, a celebration of life, a simple graveside burial or a complete traditional funeral at church. This flexibility and personalization can sometimes cause a great deal of uncertainty among surviving loved ones trying to make arrangements. And, these emotional decisions can sometimes have expensive outcomes.
Record Your Wishes
The most valuable thing that can be done for loved ones is to express and hopefully record wishes ahead of time. It is a daunting task, but having the forethought to make final plans ahead of time can provide loved ones reassurance and comfort during what is likely to be a very difficult time. This can be as easy as writing preferences down and sharing them with trusted caregivers or family.
Pre-Paying for a Funeral
If a family decides to move ahead and pre-pay with a funeral provider, ask questions. Be sure to know what is included in the following:
Contract – Review all itemized services on the contract and ask if any other services will be required to fulfill final wishes.
Additional Costs – What costs will arise at the time of need? Some funeral establishments will not include third party disbursements with their pre-payment plans. This can leave surviving families alarmed and resentful about having to pay more at the time of need. Ask about including these costs as part of the pre-payment plan. Transparency and communication are key.
Investment – Funeral establishments will always invest funds with a third-party provider. This is to offer flexibility to the consumer in case they move to a different city, and also to protect the consumer if something were to happen to the funeral establishment. Funds are always secure and transferable. Funds are typically invested in either a trust, an annuity, or an insurance policy. Ask the funeral planner which investment direction is fitting.
Select a Funeral Service Provider
Another step in planning ahead is researching options for funeral service providers. In most cities you will be able to choose between a traditional funeral home or a low-cost alternative funeral provider. If you wish to have a traditional visitation in your local funeral home, then your options will limited to the providers directly in your area. If you are open to other types of services, then a low-cost alternative could be your best option. At Basic Funerals we can hold any type of funeral service, cremation service or burial across many cities in Ontario. You can decide between a direct cremation and plan a celebration of life without assistance from the funeral home, or you can hold traditional services at a church, local chapel or cemetery.
Becoming familiar with pricing is important, but so is finding just the right establishment that will resonate and offer comfort to surviving family in the event of death. Most funeral providers will offer complimentary pre-planning, which means starting a file with all required personal vital statistics. Funeral service preferences down to each and every detail, like music and flowers can be recorded here too. Seek the help of a transparent and knowledgeable funeral professional. Read their literature, talk to their staff and take your time. Planning ahead is a thoughtful thing to do for loved ones. It offers relief, comfort, and the time to reflect on what services will meet everyone's needs.
About the Author
Tania Tack is a Licensed Funeral Pre-Planner with Basic Funerals and Cremation Choices. Tania feels it is a genuine privilege to journey with families during their final planning. Working in funeral service has been enriching, humbling, and rewarding. She is proud to serve families with such a transparent provider that truly values integrity and exceptional service.
Licensed Funeral Pre-Planner, Basic Funerals and Cremation Choices