Most of us don't particularly want to think about our death or the fact that it could surprise us at a time not of our choosing. However, if you have ever thought about the kind of funeral that you would want, or your preference for how you are buried, then you might want to look into funeral insurance.
Funeral insurance is specifically designed to provide for the expenses associated with the burial and internment of a deceased loved one. There are many reasons to pre-plan this event; not only does it help to ease the stress of the family members left behind because arrangements are made, but it also helps ease the financial burden that can otherwise be left to those still living. Basically, with this kind of insurance, you have pre-paid for the arrangements and those who are grieving only have to follow the plan as it is laid out.
Another thing to think about: funeral costs are rising steadily. Funerals now cost thousands of dollars. In fact, according to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), funerals are among the most expensive purchases that older people make. The cost of a traditional funeral, from service to internment, can easily cost in the range of $8,000 to $10,000. That can be a huge financial burden for family members, particularly if your death is unexpected.
Given that costs are increasing, how can you effectively protect your family? If you buy a $10,000 funeral insurance policy today, will that be enough when you do die? You'll have to do some pre-planning and also do a bit of crystal ball gazing.
With funeral insurance, there is no typical plan. You will make some highly personal decisions. Do you want to be cremated and your ashes scattered at a favorite location? There shouldnt be any cost for internment then. Depending on your choices, you could keep your costs as low as possible or make your funeral an event to remember. It's up to you.
Once you have chosen products and services that you want in your funeral service, an insurance agent (who may also be a funeral director) will write up your policy to cover the specifics in a number of categories. Your policy should include in general:
- A container, like a casket or urn
- Cremation or embalming (depending on your wishes)
- A burial vault or grave liner (depending on where your body will be interned)
- A grave marker (like a headstone or other marker)
- Arrangements for a hearse and other funeral vehicles for the service
- Arrangements for flowers either at a funeral home or service
- Arrangements for digging and filling a grave site
- Purchase of a burial plot, as required