how to budget for a funeral

How to budget for a Funeral in 2021

December 31, 2021

How to budget for a funeral

Have you ever considered how to budget for a funeral? Statista data indicates that about 300,314 deaths were reported in Canada between July 2019 and June 2020 alone. With death comes funerals and all the planning everyone would prefer to avoid. However, funerals are typically costly affairs. So it is crucial to take charge of the entire process from start to finish. This way, you can avoid spending thousands of dollars needlessly and still give your loved one an honourable service. If you wish to learn more about saving money on funeral expenses, please consider the following points.

Compare your options

Different funeral homes offer varying packages and pricing to families sending their loved ones off. Therefore, much like buying a house or a car, it is crucial to shop around for the best and most affordable deal possible before committing to any funeral home. For this, you can simply call all funeral homes in your area and ask for their general price list. This list typically itemizes charges, offering more clarification when working out your budget. As such, you can know the average price of funerals in your area and compare the prices each funeral home offers you for caskets, items, and cremation costs. Then, select the relevant products and services that matter to you and your family. Stick to your budget to prevent overspending.

Watch out for upsells

As insensitive as it sounds, funeral homes are businesses at their core. The ultimate goal of these homes is to make a profit just like any other enterprise. Consequently, it isn’t uncommon to encounter upselling as you plan your loved one’s funeral. Funeral home directors may suggest more expensive caskets and packages for your loved one’s funeral. Still, you should always insist on spending what you have budgeted for without any add-ons. This way, you don’t overspend while mourning a tragic loss. Losing a loved one to natural causes is challenging enough. Your grief may be even more if you lost them under tragic circumstances like a hit-and-run accident. Nevertheless, you can work with wrongful death lawyers who listen to obtain justice for your loved one and receive compensation for any relevant damages.

Leverage the internet

You can do several things online these days, and several people find that using the internet to plan funerals simplifies the entire process and saves them significant cash. Therefore, you can also use the internet to save lots of money when planning a funeral. For starters, you can publish the obituary on social media, funeral home websites, church websites, and other online platforms instead of paying thousands of dollars for a newspaper obituary that few people will see. Additionally, you can use platforms like Zoom to host a virtual memorial service. Eliminating any travel and event costs from your budget. Finally, you can share funeral details online instead of organizing physical programs. You can also share details to other online platforms such as Genealogy Bank, so people can use it in the future to trace their family trees and ancestry, as this is important for family history


Opt for cremation when thinking how to budget for a funeral

Cremation cost is becoming increasingly popular in Canada due to cultural shifts in attitudes. They are more practical than sentimental approaches to funeral arrangements. Indeed, Canada’s cremation rate reached 73.1% in 2019, with experts forecasting this rate to reach 77.6% by 2024. Cremations are a cheaper alternative to burials. Cremation can cost up to $5000, while burials range from $7000 to $10,000. Direct cremation is even more affordable, starting a around $800. Therefore, consider cremation as a more affordable option to take care of your loved one’s remains. Moreover, cremation is environmentally friendlier than a traditional burial. Something to consider if your loved one was environmentally conscious.

Skip embalming

Embalming was a standard way to preserve remains before burial artificially. But they aren’t a crucial component of the burial process anymore. Formaldehyde, the chemical used for embalming, damages the environment when it leaks into the ground. Additionally, this chemical is expensive and will drive up your funeral costs. Therefore, you can insist on skipping embalming to avoid paying any embalming expenses. However, you may need to bury or cremate immediately if you choose not to embalm the body. Also, choosing not to embalm is best if you aren’t planning an open-casket service or viewing.

Organize the memorial yourself

A formal or traditional memorial service through a funeral home can lead to extra costs that can stretch your budget. If the body is present, transportation, embalming, and staffing are some costs to expect. However, you can avoid all these expenses by planning the memorial yourself. Consequently, consider organizing a celebration of life or memorial service in a public space. Or venue that meant a lot to your deceased loved one. Public parks, churches, community centers, and family homes are some of the most popular options available for organizing memorials without paying, so keep this in mind.

Suggestions on how to budget for a funeral

Losing a loved one is never easy. And it may seem like the last time you would want to have to consider saving money and budgeting. Being aware of these ideas above on how to budget for a funeral will allow you to give you loved ones a beautiful send off. And not have you worrying about breaking the bank.

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  • Currently located in China, teaching English and working towards Financial Freedom. I write about money, travel, personal development and more!


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