Several factors contribute to the cost of a funeral. Figures may vary greatly, not only around procedural choices concerning, for example, burial or cremation, but by region. Simple cremations, may vary from 3 to 4 thousand pounds depending on location (25%), burials from 3.5 to 6.5 thousand (nearly 100%).
Significantly, funeral prices have risen sharply, with a 7% increase in the last 12 months outstripping even the housing market. Certain providers, such as Co-operative Funeral Care, are transparent in pricing and provide calculators, capable of producing detailed costings, capturing both funeral wishes and region.
What are these costs made up of?
The cost of a funeral might be split into: funeral director costs; ‘extras’ and third party fees.
Funeral director costs typically include:
- Funeral arrangement e.g. organisation of service, clergy/crematorium liaison, documentation;
- Care and preparation of the deceased;
- Provision of hearse, coffin bearers and other transportation;
- The coffin or casket itself.
Extras may also be attended to by the funeral director, on request and include: flowers, limousines, notifications in media etc.
Third party fees describe all that the funeral director does not provide, for example:
- Church fees;
- Cremation fees;
- Burial fees;
- Doctors’ fees;
- Clerical or officiant fees;
- Other personalisations e.g. music.
How to pay for funeral costs
Those arranging funerals for, ‘plan holders’ with, for example, Co-operative funeral care services, are able to liaise with their provider to assist in administration of funeral costs. Similarly, where Confidence Wills are supporting probate services, their providers can assist in settlements to be made from the estate of the deceased.
Notwithstanding, in all cases, certain costs must be paid up front (e.g. officiant fees, cremation fees etc.) whilst others, will be invoiced after the event. Typically these are payable by cash, credit card or cheque.
What if my budget is tight?
For those wishing to spend less, it is worth noting that government help might be available to assist with funeral costs. Where applicable a ‘Funeral Expense Payment’ claim form (SF200) can be downloaded from the government’s website (www.gov.uk). Co-op members are eligible for 5% discount on funeral fees from recognised establishments.
At the lower end of the scale, simple funerals may be obtained from Co-operative funeral care services for around £1,900. Direct cremation for £1,400 (excluding ceremony). Other providers may charge more.
If you’ve any questions on anything raised in this article, please don’t hesitate to contact Confidence Wills – Contact Us