Using the right funeral home to help you plan a memorial service can help you honor your loved one the way you want. A proper service can also assist you with the mourning process. Planning a funeral can be extremely emotional. As you plan, remember that funeral homes want to make money. You should compare multiple homes for the best service and pricing.
State and federal laws require funeral homes to give you a list of prices before you start planning. Funeral homes provide a General Price List that breaks down costs. They can also provide these details over the phone. The Federal Trade Commission Funeral Law ensures that services are also available outside of package deals. After you select the products and services, the funeral home will give you an itemized statement that outlines all the costs.
You have other rights including:
Buying a casket or cremation container from another location (online or another store). You can use it at any funeral home for the burial.
Selecting different burial containers other than a casket for cremation.
Receiving a detailed list of prices for the products and services you selected before the funeral to avoid any additional costs.
Refusing to embalm. By law, funeral homes are required to get your written or verbal consent before starting to embalm.
Some funeral homes display their General Price List on their website like Mountain View. Caskets vary in style and material, and prices also vary significantly. Casket Showcase is an online retailer that displays available caskets and prices. Stricklin/Snively Mortuary, a part of Dignity Memorial, provides online planning tools and the option to pre-plan online.
It’s always best to preplan a funeral if possible because you are not emotional and may be thinking more clearly. Since this is not always possible, you should start your search by asking for a referral from friends, family, or co-workers. Search online for reviews. Search the Better Business Bureau for BBB-accredited funeral homes. If you want to verify a license, you can visit the California Department of Consumer Affairs Cemetery and Funeral Bureau.
After selecting a couple of funeral homes, review their General Price Lists for comparable prices and services. Decide what you want for the service and do a price comparison. You will need to include prices of caskets or cremation containers. The Federal Trade Commission offers a Funeral Pricing Checklist help you begin your search and know what to look for when contacting a funeral home. Take note of how each funeral home treats you as just a shopper to check their customer service.
It’s hard not to get the best of everything for your loved one. However, don’t let this funeral cause you financial debt. There are plenty of ways you can save money and still have a respectable service to honor your loved one. Decide ahead of time what you really want in the service. Create your budget before you begin planning. Tell the funeral home what you want to spend. Funeral Consumers Alliance is a valuable resource to help you create a budget-friendly, suitable service for your loved one.
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