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How much a funeral costs

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It’s not something that any of us likes to think about, but unfortunately at some point in our lives it’s likely that we will have to arrange a funeral. The average cost of a funeral in the UK is over £3,000 and at a time when you’re grieving over the loss of a loved one, working out how much a funeral costs can be a real source of worry.

What is needed?

As with most things, there are elements that are essential and others that are optional. For any funeral you will need a death certificate, an undertaker, a celebrant, a coffin and a burial plot or cremation. A funeral director will normally make payments to essential third parties on your behalf. Ask for a written quote stating all that is included so that you know exactly what you can expect and work out what other services you’ll need to budget for.

Other costs

Flowers, a death/funeral notice in the paper, additional cars, catering for a wake and erecting a memorial are all things associated with funerals that are non-essential. Friends and family can help with transport and letting people know funeral arrangements and you could have the wake at someone’s house rather than hiring a venue. Many people are now shunning the idea of flowers as a waste of money and in some cases contribute cash to charity instead. Alternatively you could enlist the help of a creative friend to arrange some flowers. There is no rush for a memorial and this can wait until the money is available. You’ll want to spend some time thinking about what to put on it anyway.

Paying for a funeral

funeral costsDepending on the deceased’s finances and wishes, you may find that an insurance policy or pre-paid plan will cover the cost. Life insurance is usually paid out as a lump sum when the policyholder dies and can be used to pay funeral expenses. Many undertakers offer pre-paid plans. These allow the funeral to be paid for in advance, often in instalments. As well as giving the person taking out the plan the option to choose the form they wish their funeral to take, a pre-paid plan helps reduce costs as prices are negotiated at the time the plan is taken out rather than after the death, which could be years – and a significant amount of inflation – away.

It is also possible to pay for the funeral out of the deceased’s estate. However, this usually takes some time to be processed so you may need to come to a deferred payment arrangement with the funeral director and suppliers or pay from your own pocket and reclaim the costs later.

Help paying for a funeral

If you are on a low income and are responsible for paying for the funeral of a relative you may be entitled to some help from the government.  This must be claimed within three months of the funeral taking place and if the deceased has left any money or property it may need to be paid back when that is settled. To qualify you must be the partner or a close relative of the deceased or the parent if it is a child that has passed away.

If you are worried about the cost of arranging a funeral then speak to your funeral director who might be willing to offer a deferred payment scheme or let you pay in instalments.

 

 

 

 

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About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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