When considering how things will be handled at the end of your life, most people are concerned about the cost of burial or cremation and their funeral. It is ideal to know ahead of time that your family will not have to worry about covering the costs while they are celebrating your life and grieving the loss. The desire to protect your family from unexpected costs will often lead people to wonder if they have insurance or any type of coverage that will provide for their families in the event that they pass away.
There are many ways to ensure that your funeral costs do not become the responsibility of your loved one. Life insurance, funeral services insurance, pre-planning and pre-paying are all options to consider when looking at how your funeral costs will be handled.
More than half of the population carries some type of life insurance policy. While these policies are intended to help the remaining family to manage expenses, life insurance payouts can often take some time to disburse and funeral expenses are due at the time of the funeral. For this reason, life insurance is often not the most convenient way to handle covering the costs of a cremation and funeral.
If your family has the disposable income to manage upfront funeral expenses, a life insurance policy will reimburse them in the future and may be the best option for you. If not, you may want to consider one of these additional options.
Funeral Services Insurance
Insurance that is specifically earmarked for funeral expenses can be term life policies or whole life policies and are bought directly from an insurance company such as Purple Shield, not through a funeral home.
These policies will generally cost less than other types of insurance and will feature a beneficiary you name and not a funeral service provider. It doesn’t lock you into using a particular funeral home — but it does present the risk that the named beneficiary might not spend the money as intended, such as on the deceased’s funeral and death care. Some of these policies can get more complex, with features of whole life insurance policies such as cash-value accumulation.
These policies also carry the risk that you will pay for them without actually knowing how much the funeral expenses will be. This can lead to having less funds available than what is needed or much more than what is required.
Pre-planning your funeral is an important way to support your family in the time following your passing. By having your wishes pre-planned, all of the guesswork is removed and your family can focus on honouring your life. Pre-planning also gives a realistic estimate of the costs of your burial, cremation and funeral or celebration of life services. This transparency allows for the funds to be set aside within your estate or to help determine how your final expenses will be handled.
There are many costs to consider when looking at the end of your life. If you are thinking ahead about how your funeral costs will be handled, it is a crucial first step to have a general idea of what your wishes are so you have an estimate of what financial support is needed. It is also very helpful to your family to know your wishes, that there is money set aside for them and to possibly even pre-arrange your funeral to make the event as seamless as it can be made to be. For many, relieving their families from the necessity to plan their funeral is a way to ensure they are taken care of even after your passing.
Our blog on How to Plan A Funeral may be a helpful resource to determine what type of services you will want and the costs.
Taking pre-planning one step further, you can also choose to pre-pay for your funeral now so that your loved ones do not have to manage the planning or payment of your funeral at all. Paying for your services now will ensure that the costs will not grow over time, that the chosen funeral home already knows your wishes and with the costs already covered, your family only needs to oversee the execution of the services and participate in honouring your memory. Pre-payment can be done in one lump sum or it can be spread out over time in a payment plan that is arranged with the funeral home you are working with.
For more information on pre-planning your funeral and prepayment options, click here.
Ensuring that there is money earmarked in any of these manners will allow your family to celebrate your life and grieve the loss without having the additional burden of paying for a significant expense that they may be unprepared for and may not have the resources to bear. It also provides you with the peace of mind of knowing what will happen and how everything will be handled upon your passing.
By liberating your loved ones from this responsibility, you will also give them the gift of peace of mind during what will assuredly be a difficult time for them.
If you have purchased insurance or pre-arranged, maybe even prepaid, for your end of life services, you will save your family a significant cost on top of absolving them from the responsibility of making many decisions that they may be too overwhelmed to consider at the time. If you have any questions or would like to discuss costs for cremation, burial and a funeral, the licensed funeral directors at Country Hills Crematorium & Funeral Services are here to help you. Please call us to set up a consultation at any time.