Saving money is definitely one of the biggest benefits of having a pre-paid funeral plan. That’s what they all say. And it’s true.
If you’re unfamiliar with pre paid funeral plans, you’re taking out a plan, paying today’s prices even if it changes. As costs generally increase in every aspect of life by buying at today’s process for a funeral that could be 20 or 30 years away could save a few thousand pounds.
Some costs won’t be included in the pre-paid plan (for example things like crematorium fees will increase and be outside the remit of the plan), but the funeral director’s costs will be covered, even if there’s an increase.
And it’s estimated that by 2024 the average funeral will cost £5,285. In 2014 it was £3,590. That’s an almost £1700 increase in ten years. If your funeral is 30 years away that will be an extra £5,085.
And the funeral director’s prices won’t rise even if you live to be 100.
· The cost of the funeral director’s services will be covered
· Some will even pay the transportation charges if the death occurs away from your permanent address, but still within mainland UK
· Often plans allow you take out a plan regardless of your health condition
But you won’t be the one worrying…
… which leads to the most important reason why people take out pre paid funeral plans:
Helping out Your Family
Funerals are a time of stress and grief. Many people don’t want their family to have to deal with the stress of arranging a funeral at a time that’s highly emotional.
It’s a cliché but it’s one less worry.
Worries over how to pay, making sure the correct paperwork is acquired and completed and deciding how to hold the funeral service are mixed with feelings of sadness and grief. It’s stressful.
Having a pre-paid funeral plan takes away all that.
Do Your Family Know What You Want for your Funeral?
The answer is probably ‘no’.
Most people haven’t discussed the details of any funeral wishes with their loved ones. And by most people it means only 1% actually know their loved one’s wishes.
So, by taking out a pre paid funeral plan any confusion or disagreement can be cleared up in the early stages.
Paying for a Loved One’s Funeral
Working out how to pay for an unplanned funeral can be hugely stressful for those left behind. Often the most common solutions include:
· Borrowing money from friends and family
· Bank Loans
· Credit Cards
· Selling personal items
None of which are ideal, and certainly not in the context of grief and overwhelming emotion. It could also lead to feeling pressured into making poor financial decisions that have greater consequences further down the line.
Even if inflation means there are some additional costs to pay (cremation fees etc) it will be much smaller than having to pay from scratch at the time.
It’s perhaps worth noting here that a pre paid funeral is not the same as an over 50s plan that pays out a lump sum on your death.
Typically with an over 50s plan you’ll be paying in until a certain time and you could be paying more than you have returned.
A pre paid funeral guarantees your future funeral costs, but at the same prices as today.
What to Expect
Each funeral provider offers a different level of service and different packages. But it’s good advice to go to an independent funeral director. You’ll get a more personalised level of service and likely better value for money.
And with a pre paid funeral plan you can still make all the same choices you want for your send off.
Your Pre Paid Funeral Plan Should Include:
· Professional funeral directors charges, which include making all official arrangements for cremation or burial
· Taking the body from the place of death to a location, such as the funeral home
· Dressing the body and any other hygienic preparation required for viewing
· Advice on the certification and registration of death and other important paperwork
· Provision of a hearse and other funeral vehicles
· Options for pallbearers if required
It’s worth thinking that the way people want to be sent off is changing. The solemnity and the mourning are being replaced with celebrations of life.
People want their loved ones to spend the money on a weekend away, not in undertaker’s fees. So buying now for the future could see savings that are enjoyed in other ways.