The actual meeting with the pre-need specialist at your local funeral home will be free. No cost. If after meeting with the specialist, you decide to plan your funeral in detail, there will be no cost associated with putting your wishes on file at the funeral home. Once you have determined what you want (your wishes), the funeral professional will be able to tell you exactly how much your funeral would cost today.
After you have determined today’s cost of the funeral that meets your desires and will satisfy your family’s needs, you will have choices. There are many options for how to pay in advance for your funeral. What works best for you and your family is personal. You’ll want to consider several factors.
· Your income
· Your expenses
· Your assets and where are they invested
It might be helpful to think in terms of buying a new car. If you needed a car, how would you be most comfortable covering the cost? Would you withdraw from your retirement account or investments and pay in one payment, or would you prefer to cover the cost on a monthly basis? Of course, the cost of a funeral is typically far less than a new car, but you do have similar options. Most funeral homes offer programs that allow an individual to pay for a funeral over three years, five years, 10 years or even 20 years when they are paying in advance. Of course, you can always pay the total amount in a single payment.
The actual dollar amount you would pay monthly is calculated based on the total cost of your funeral in today’s dollars. A more expensive funeral will come with a higher payment per month than a lower-cost choice. As you would expect, the 10 year payment plan will come with a lower per-month payment than a three-year payment plan.
In addition to the current cost, your age may be a factor that impacts the monthly payment amount. Many plans will pay off the balance owed should you die before completing the payment plan. This means older folks who choose to pay over time are a greater risk. So, as would be expected, they will have higher monthly payments than younger people.
The prearrangement specialist at your local funeral home can explain all of the benefits of prepaying for your funeral in advance of need as well as all the options available to you. At the conclusion of your funeral planning session, you can: 1) pay today’s cost in one payment, 2) choose a payment plan that suits your budget or 3) leave your plan (wishes) on file at the funeral home for your family to follow at the time of your death.
Prearrangement will allow you to make an informed choice and when the time comes, your family will not be caught unprepared.