Are you a celebrant in need of some funeral budgeting advice? This article covers it all…
Making plans for a funeral is one of the most difficult tasks anyone will have to go through. That’s why, as a celebrant, you have an important job to make sure that all the finer details are taken care of, including helping with funeral budgeting.
Funeral budgeting covers a wide range of different factors. For starters, you’ll be guiding people through their loved one’s Will to avoid potential inheritance disputes when paying for the funeral. You’ll also be required to help choose the flower arrangements, and more.
Every little detail can make a huge difference to the funeral, so it’s vital to be prepared. Here’s how…
What Expenses do Funerals Require?
Before you start supporting your client with the budgeting, it’s important to have a clear idea as to the sort of funeral expenses that can crop up. These are just some of the most common funeral expenses you might come across as a celebrant:
Burial or Cremation Costs
Whether the funeral involves a burial or cremation will depend on the deceased’s wishes within their Will. Both options will cost money, the amount of which depends on where the arrangements are being made. That being said, cremation services are generally the cheaper option.
Funeral Director Costs
A funeral director will be responsible for the funeral service itself. This includes essential funeral expenses such as:
- Preparing and completing documentation
- Preparing the deceased
- Providing a hearse
- Providing a coffin or casket
You will also need to consider the venue of the funeral and how that might affect the client’s budget. While some venues may not be as grand as others, they may match your budget constraints more accurately.
There are a number of extra costs that need to be taken into consideration when budgeting for a funeral. These could include flower arrangements, additional cars for family members, embalming, or press notices. As a celebrant, you will have to go through the full list of potential extras and help your client to assess which options they would like to pay for.
How Can a Client Pay for a Funeral?
Finding the funds to pay for the perfect funeral can often be difficult. That’s where a funeral celebrant can lend their support and help their client to effectively plan ahead of time. Here are a few of the ways a client might pay for a funeral and how you can lend your help.
Using a Will Funds to Pay for a Funeral
It may be the case that the deceased left behind money in their Will that can be used to pay for funeral costs. This is called a funeral plan. The funeral costs will mostly be taken care of – it will just be up to the deceased’s loved ones to decide how to effectively use the money.
Wills can often be complex and difficult to understand, particularly as many clients will be going through a particularly difficult time emotionally. So, it’s important that you are on hand to help them navigate some of the more complex legal details.
This is especially important if there are any disputes between beneficiaries of the Will regarding its contents and their inheritance. By carefully and sensitively guiding your client through the Will, you can help to clarify and potential misunderstandings.
Apply for Bereavement Support Payment
Your client may be eligible to receive Bereavement Support Payment (BSP). This is a government scheme which will help to cover some of the funeral costs.
You can help a client to assess whether they are eligible for BSP and support them in making an application. Funeral budgeting will be made that much easier if your client is able to fall back on funds coming from a legitimate outside source.
Apply for a Funeral Expenses Payment
If your client receives certain state benefits, they may be eligible for a Funeral Expenses Payment. Again, you can help your client to assess whether they are able to make a claim for a Funeral Expenses Payment, and plan for the money to be used effectively when it comes to funeral budgeting.
Are There Ways to Plan a Funeral on a Budget?
Funeral budgeting can be stressful at the best of times, but it can be especially difficult if you are going to struggling to arrange a suitable funeral on a limited budget.
However, here’s no need to panic. There are plenty of different ways you can help your client to lower the cost of a funeral without having to making dramatic compromises. Here are some simple methods you can consider:
Cremation Over Burial
There are a number of additional costs that you will need to consider when it comes to planning a burial, such as the purchase of the burial plot, the grave digger fee and minister fees. So, if the deceased has not specified what they would like to happen when they are no longer around, then you can discuss choosing cremation over a burial.
Carefully Research Funeral Directors
Not every funeral director is the same, and each will offer a different service for a range of different prices. One of the most important funeral budgeting concerns you should have is picking the funeral director that offers the best value for money. Remember, advising your client to use the cheapest available funeral director isn’t always the best choice, especially if they have a poor reputation. Do look fully at their websites such as this funeral directors company based in Taunton.
Save on Memorial Costs
There are a range of different memorials that you can suggest to your client, many of which can help to save money if you are trying to help them with their funeral budget. As an example, choosing granite over marble as the material for a headstone is an easy way of saving some money that can be invested into another part of the funeral process.
We hope this article has given you some sense of how to use the funeral expenses best when budgeting for this solemn day.
Celebrant and Photographer Credits: Bec Zacher, Roshini McCartin, Helen Noble,
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