Taking care of your family is a priority in the event of your death, just as it is while you are alive. Planning for end-of-life will protect your loved ones when you’re gone by ensuring they won’t be burdened with logistics while they are grieving your loss.
What Is Funeral Pre-Planning?
Funeral pre-planning involves arranging all the elements of a funeral or memorial service and communicating those wishes to your next of kin. Funeral pre-planning typically involves working with a funeral home to prepay for part of or all of your funeral costs. This may also include organizing important documents and conveying important information to your loved ones. If you’re in California, Grace can help guide you through this process.
Life is unpredictable, so we recommend pre-planning while you are active and healthy, before a serious disability, sickness or unexpected death occurs. It’s always a good time to plan, but ideal to plan sooner than later. We particularly recommend pre-planning around the time of major life events such as:
- Before or after getting married
- When having a child
- Before major surgical procedures
- During retirement planning
- While formulating your Will or Power of Attorney
- When entering a nursing home or relocating to hospice care
- When your spouse or life partner is seriously ill or passes away
Protect against rising funeral costs
Funerals are expensive and the cost can increase quickly due to inflation and other economic shifts. In recent years, prices have trended upward by 7.4 percent. Without pre-planning, families can experience major financial burden.
Nationwide, funeral costs average between $7,000 and $10,000. Your price will vary based on what you and your family want out of the funeral. A Grace expert can guide you through hidden decisions that can impact how much you should budget. Cemetery costs alone can add $2,000 to $3,000.
On top of increasing funeral costs, large funeral conglomerates have acquired smaller funeral homes reducing competition and choices available. Average costs for these larger funeral homes can be as much as 42 percent higher than independently owned funeral homes. Grace negotiates with providers to ensure you and your family get the most value for your money.
Reduce stress on your family
By locking in your wishes in advance, you free your loved ones from feeling pressured about finding the right way to honor your memory. For families that do not pre-plan, working out the details of the service can cause friction during an already emotionally stressful time and lead to emotional overspending. Families that pre-plan have the opportunity to properly budget and schedule payment arrangements.
When pre-planning with Grace, our mission is to enable your family to focus on honoring your life rather than stressing over the details of a last minute funeral.
What’s involved in a funeral pre-plan?
Typical funeral services include:
- Basic services (every plan comes with these, regardless of the provider)
- Transferring remains
- Embalming (if required or requested)
- Preparing the body for viewing and/or burial
- Use of the funeral home and staff members
- Hearse, service car, or van
- Stationery such as funeral cards, programs, etc.
- Casket or other burial container
- Funeral or memorial services
How do you pre-plan?
We’ve created a powerful online pre-planning tool that helps with the pre-planning process.
When you create a Grace account (totally free), you get access to an interactive checklist that allows you to keep track of the things you need to do to plan ahead for end-of-life, coordinate with friends and family, and gain access to documents written by experts explaining how to save valuable time and money. It’s customized to your needs and takes only about a minute to get started.
To get started, create an account through our website.
If you’d prefer to talk to a person, you can also call Grace directly at (877) 958-7834. As a service to Grace readers, we offer a free consultation with a friendly and trained expert who can walk you through the key decisions you have ahead.
During your free consultation, your Grace expert will help answer questions such as:
- How do you get the most value for your money when purchasing a pre-need funeral plan?
- What do you need to buy and what common purchases should you avoid?
- What is involved in a funeral, cremation, and burial?
- How do religious or cultural orientations impact funeral planning?
- How do you avoid funeral home “bait-and-switch” tactics in which a low price is promised but the actual cost is higher?
Grace experts can also help you find quality providers for home health, home care, assisted living, and hospice. Call (877) 958-7834 to compare quality providers today.