Dallas Funeral Homes
A good funeral home can help you through a difficult passage by honoring your loved one’s life and laying them to rest. It’s important to remember that funeral homes are for-profit businesses, so as much as you may want to leave the decision-making to them, you need to know what they offer, what your consumer rights are, how to choose a funeral home, and how to stay within your budget.
Funeral home customer rights
Federal and state rules protect customers by requiring that funeral service providers give out their prices, both in print and over the phone. Federal Trade Commission law also mandates that funeral homes allow you to select the services you want without having to purchase a package, and Texas law requires funeral homes to give customers a complete price list for services before there’s any discussion of funeral arrangements. You also have the right to:
Get a written list with prices of all the services and items you’ve chosen as soon as you make your arrangements.
Choose a container other than a casket for cremation, regardless of where you live.
Bring a casket or urn you’ve bought elsewhere for the funeral home to use.
Decline embalming. Texas law requires funeral service providers to get your spoken or written permission before embalming.
Some funeral companies, like Local Cremation & Funerals, list flat-rate package prices online. Others, like Golden Gate Funeral Home, post their entire General Price List and casket and burial container prices on their website. The Dignity Memorial funeral network, which includes 16 Dallas-area funeral homes and cemeteries, has an online tool to help you plan and price services.
Finding the right funeral home
If at all possible, shop around before you need funeral services. Ask friends, family, and co-workers for their recommendations. Check online review sites for client feedback. See who’s accredited with the Better Business Bureau of Dallas and Northeast Texas. You can verify the license of any funeral service provider at the Texas Funeral Service Commission website.
Once you find a few homes that sound promising, compare prices. You can call and ask for prices over the phone, or you (or a friend) can visit each home and request the General Price List and a price list for caskets and outer burial containers. The Federal Trade Commission’s Funeral Pricing Checklist is a good tool for making notes. Make note of the quality of service you receive from each provider you contact.
Sticking to a budget
For many of us, there’s what we can afford to spend and what we want to spend to honor our loved one. But emotional decisions can be costly, and the last thing you want to remind you of someone you love is debt related to their funeral. You can avoid overspending on funeral costs by deciding what you want before you contact any funeral service providers, and sticking to that list. When keeping costs as low as possible is crucial, the Funeral Consumers Alliance of North Texas can direct you to low-cost cremation providers in the Metroplex.
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