Nice article dealing with the issues of what to do with the cremated remains of your loved one.
I answer questions weekly dealing with this issue. What to do with cremated remains in the Spartanburg, Greenville, upstate SC area.
Funeral > Cremation > Now What?
We have all passed by or visited a cemetery. But, few people want to think about death, especially, the death of their loved one or even their own death. While pre-planning a funeral is always a good idea so that you’ll be prepared when the time comes, and it eventually comes for all of us, most people haven’t given much thought to the death or dying.
In these cases, unless there’s an already purchased grave set aside for an individual or family, part of the funeral planning process will need to involve the purchase of a cemetery plot should the family of the deceased want to have the remains buried.
Grave Plots can vastly range in price depending largely on the location of the plot within the cemetery and the overall pricing of the cemetery. Some cemeteries have the “first class” locations which carry a higher price. For example plots in exclusive areas of a cemetery, such as a scenic hilltop, near a fountain or reflecting pond, next to sculpture garden, or other similar areas will be more expensive. On average, plots start around $1,800 though some cemeteries may offer less expensive options.
If you think about it at it’s most simple, purchasing a grave plot is no different than buying real estate, because really that’s exactly what it is. Much as you would with buying land or a home, you’ll want to shop around not only for price but to find a location that best suits your finances, your family, and the person who is recently passed away.
While some may not have pre-planned their funeral, it’s not uncommon for a plot to be bought in advance. Some families even give cemetery plots as gifts. Before you purchase a plot, make sure that you don’t already have access to burial/cemetery space that has already been purchased either your loved one or by a family member as part of the family plot. You may need to consult your loved one’s Last Will and Testament or go through important family papers in order to see if this is the case. Purchasing a grave/cemetery plot in advance will generally be advantageous both emotionally and financially.
One economy option in purchasing cemetery property is to buy a pre-owned grave. Yes, that does sound strange. But despite the awkward name a pre-owned grave plot isn’t actually a grave that has been previously used. Instead, it’s a plot that the previous owner has decided to sell because they won’t be needing it. For example, a family may decide to move from the area. Needless to say, they preferred to be buried where they settled, and, so, they look to sell the unused plot they won’t be needing. This is one of the best ways to get a bargain when purchasing a plot. Most sellers only want to recover the price they paid when they initially purchased the plot. If the plot was purchased several years ago, and in some cases, decades earlier, the asking price could be quite a low.
The cemetery may be able to tell you if anyone is offering a pre-owned plot for sale. But an internet search or a scan of local classified ads will lead you to many pre-owned grave plots in your area. Make sure if you do purchase a pre-owned plot, that you go in person ahead of the purchase, to look at the property and also check out the dealer before paying to make sure that the purchase is legal in every way.
We can direct you to a cemetery that meets your needs. We can assist you in finding pre-owned cemetery plots in the SC Upstate, including Laurens, Greenville, Anderson, and Spartanburg.
What does a typical funeral, memorial, or celebration of life service look like? These days, there is no such thing as a typical service. There is no right or wrong way to have a service. It really comes down to what you want. What you need to know is that there are many options to services.
As baby boomers age and find themselves having to plan funerals for loved ones and themselves, they are making funeral choices based on values that are different than previous generations. Baby boomers see funerals as a valuable part of the grieving process and are seeking ways to make them meaningful. –NFDA
By planning your service in advance you can specify the exact type of service you would like. Preplanning allows your friends and family to celebrate you, as you wish. Letting your family know how you’d like your funeral or memorial service to be, they will have fewer decisions to make during the difficult time that is ahead.
To help relieve their families, an increasing number of people are planning their own funerals, designating their funeral preferences, and sometimes paying for them in advance. They see funeral planning as an extension of will and estate planning. – FTC
Here is a small list of options to help you decide on the type of service you want to have:
For additional details or service options, contact us. Understand your options before talking to your local funeral home or service provider.
Real estate is expensive. Cemetery real estate makes big city commercial property look cheap!
When purchasing a columbarium niche or a plot for an urn or casket burial, be sure to ask for a full price list of all immediate and future charges. Cemeteries are not legally required to provide you with an itemized price list.
However, you should feel free to ask for such a price list.
As with funeral homes, the transparency offered by a cemetery is often a good indicator of the ethics and professionalism of the company.
This is a question that funeral directors get all the time. Depending on who you ask, you may or may not be given several options. (Contact The Funeral Consultant, for unbiased answers, that meet your needs and give you peace of mind)
But first things first. They are not ashes, they are “Cremated Remains.”
(Contact us if you would like to know the difference.)
That’s a good question. It’s not really an easy answer. Sure there are the average cost numbers you see everywhere online. Funeral’s from $4,500 – $10,000+ are common in the upstate, Greenville, Spartanburg, and Anderson. Similar funerals can have cost differences of several thousand dollars, depending on your funeral home of choice. That’s why a funeral consultant can be a big help when you need questions answered.
If you decide to go it alone when planning a funeral or cremation service, be sure to understand the price structure of the funeral service. The Federal Trade Commission has a great post to guide you.
Are we all in denial about death?
When a loved one is on their deathbed and everyone knows it, even if the loved one wants to talk about funeral plans, someone in the room will resist. “Now, Aunt Sue, we won’t discuss anything that negative because you are going to get better!”
So, when Aunt Sue dies during the following days, the family still has no idea what she wanted in the way of a funeral or memorial service or if she desired cremation instead of burial. The family must now go to the prearrangement visit, perhaps numbed by the loss of their loved one, and make many financial decisions amounting to thousands of dollars.
When asked, around 85% of all funeral directors cited ’emotional overspending’ as the key reasons funeral cost so much. Why? Because we wait until the absolute last minute to even consider funerals. Also, since we usually do not have the ‘guest of honor’s inputs’, we tend to overspend to avoid family arguments, conform to what the funeral home staff considers proper and avoid looking cheap in anyone’s eyes.
But who can the consumer turn to for information on funeral options and costs? Until now, just to the funeral home staff … and you know that would be a conflict of interest. The clergy has a nodding acquaintance with the funeral industry, but as a rule are no better versed in cost containment than the average consumer.
What consumers need is a third party; someone who has taken the time and energy to research the local funeral establishments and who knows what can be had where at what price. Someone who will be their advocate in this process. This is where Funeral Consultants enter the picture.
Funeral consultants can NOT arrange a funeral per se, unless they happen to also be a licensed funeral director*. Instead, a funeral consultant acts as a mentor or advocate, walking the family through every step of the arrangement process and explaining options and costs available at each step. This enables families to make more informed decisions in planning their own or a loved one’s funeral.
*Some Funeral Consultants are licensed funeral directors
For answers to your questions about funerals, memorials, funeral homes, cemeteries, and cremation…
Serving the greater upstate of South Carolina; including Greenville, Spartanburg, Anderson, Newberry, and Laurens.
Available to consult and speak in all states.
Cremation Alternative of the Future?
There are and will continue to be changes to what most people in the south consider a “typical funeral.” For the most part, there is no such thing anymore as a “typical funeral.”
Even here in the Upstate of SC, Spartanburg, Greenville, and Anderson, “traditions” have changed. You are not obliged to do what was done in the past. there are many options when it comes to dealing with the death of a loved one.
Although not available at the current time, the following article shows what a future Spartanburg funeral home may offer. It is a bit on the extreme side of the green burial options.
What are your thought? leave a comment.