How To Calculate Burial Expenses?

When you are no more, your family members would need to organize a funeral as well as a burial for you. They would want it to be conducted in a proper and befitting way. You too would want your funeral to be done in the best possible way. Funerals and burials though are not cheap and we should plan to cut funeral expenses. They cost a lot of money. When you are no more, your family members need to spend this money. To take care of this contingency, you may want to take out a burial insurance that would pay for your burial expenses.

But in order to take a policy, you need to know the insured amount or the death benefits needed. For this, you need to calculate burial expenses in advance, so that the policy would pay that amount to your family members to organize a proper burial. Even if you don’t intend to take insurance, it is advisable to know the expenses, so that the amount is available. While this is not a topic everyone would like to discuss, it is something that has to be done.

How To Calculate Burial Expenses

Expenses involved

The actual expenses for the funeral and burial depend on many factors. These include:

  • The funeral home selected.
  • The funeral services that you want to be conducted.
  • The cost of the casket, which depends on its type.
  • The cost of the burial plot.
  • Whether you opt for burial or cremation.
  • Read Frequently asked questions on burial insurance for more information.

While expenses vary depending on these factors, and also depending on the location, on average burial expenses would be $8,755. This is as per the National Funeral Director’s Association. This does not include the burial plot, so the actual expense would be a little more than $10,000.

How to calculate

The average breakup of costs would be as follows:

Expense categoryAverage amount (in $)
Embalming and preparation of the body1085
Charges by funeral home650
Ceremony and viewing expenses900
Graveside expenses600
Transportation (hearse/limo)650
Casket or urn3500
Vault for burial (plot)2500
Tombstone or a memorial1000
Floral arrangements300
Total Expenses11185

If you want additional services like food catering, burial clothing, it would cost higher.So, as you can see the average expense would be around $11,000. This varies from state to state and depends on the funeral service provider. Also, if you want a better quality of casket or tombstone, you need to pay more. A good quality casket can cost up to $15,000. An elaborate ceremony can cost up to $5,000. The best quality headstone can cost $5,000. All this would take the expenses even higher.

From this, we can conclude that you need to budget anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000 for a funeral. You may budget $20,000 for a good quality burial.

A burial is an expensive process and the cost of the ceremony, casket and plot can go up to $11,000. Make sure you calculate expenses for funeral in advance, so that you can ensure this amount is available and there is no problem during the funeral.

How to Pay for Funeral Expenses

Emotional moments like losing your loved ones are really tough times which really test your emotional balance of mind. It becomes really hard to take the right calls in such bad times and thus planning the coming events like the funeral ceremonies becomes a cumbersome job. Here are some tips to keep in the back of your mind while planning out the funeral of your loved ones which are going to restrict the over expenditure of your hard-earned money.

Planning for the future:

You must for the coming events keeping a cool and calm mind and not in moment of shock or stress. You must have a good idea of all the options available to you for organizing the funeral ceremonies and you must be ready with a proper estimate in your mind acknowledging all the requirements for the ceremony. Also you should be making a list of all the objects required for the coming events with a peaceful mind to make proper and balanced decisions and not in a mood of sorrow or distress.

How to Pay for Funeral Expenses

Plan your budget:

Therefore you should look out for all the available options and follow the alternative which fits your budget. As a proper and a value for money proposition, it is strongly recommended to go for cremation rather than a full blown funeral ceremony which is going to cost way too much on your pocket. Preplanned funeral ceremonies also get a head-start in the financial aspect with payments in installments available for easing out the payments on your pockets. This also helps in avoiding last minute costs and saves you a lot of money upfront.Try to reduce the funeral expenses so that you should avoid extra cost and for that you should know process of burial insurance.

Utilize deceased’s property:

One can also strive for paying up the funeral homes using the deceased’s property which may negotiated for deferred payment by making them believe on the fact that they will get paid once all the probate proceedings are concluded.

Divide the load among members:

Another very viable option is to split the load on the other members of the family as per the amount affordable to them and to ease out the burden of the family in such times of need when the deceased’s estate is worth nothing or very nominal.

Raising Funds:

In the scenario, where there is absolutely nothing left by the deceased and the family is in dire need of some financial assistance they can throw a fundraiser for their noble cause and invite others to spend on the occasion. This may assist them in a very positive manner be it financially or socially and one should not shy away from asking any help in such dark times.


Getting compensation:

On the other hand, if a person is a victim of a crime or has suffered an accident which has been his cause of death, his heirs can also claim compensation to perform their last rites.

Asking for support services:

If one is still unable to take the right call, he or she may ask for assistance on many funeral consumer alliance websites or they may request a burial assistance from the government institutions. Also one may ask for any information or assistance from their corresponding burial funds of their area for any programs to help them out.

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