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How to Preplan Your Funeral: 125 Decisions Made Easy

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Throughout your lifetime, you plan for milestones like your wedding, graduation and retirement. These occasions gather crowds for a celebration and require extensive planning to make happen. It shouldn’t be any different for your funeral—the celebration of your entire life.

Planning a funeral requires making as many as 125 decisions. Some people choose to preplan to save their loved ones from having to handle arrangements once they pass.

Related Resource: Download the Seniors' Guide to Funeral Arrangements; How Preplanning Can Save Time, Money and Worry.

Many of these decisions are simple. But, for the more difficult ones, a preplanning advisor will make the process easier. An advisor can put you at ease and complete your plan in just one afternoon.

Continue reading for insight into what you’ll address during a preplanning consultation.

Choose a Funeral Home and Begin Making Preplanning Decisions

To begin preplanning, you need to select a funeral home. The funeral home staff will help guide your family through one of the most difficult times of their lives. Make sure they’re going to provide the care, comfort and service your family deserves.

Once you’ve selected the funeral home, set up an appointment with a preplanning advisor. During this consultation, you will make decisions about your funeral arrangements.

Your advisor will ask specific questions that will help to create the type of service you want. There are many details, laws and requirements involved in putting on a funeral. As we mentioned above, your advisor will break everything down into manageable questions.

In our experience, the following are a few areas that people tend to struggle:

• Casket Selection: Would you prefer a wood and metal casket? All funeral homes and cemeteries have different laws and requirements when it comes to vaulting or burying a casket.

• Headstone Selection: You’ll pick a headstone that is in line with the requirements of the cemetery of your choosing. Your advisor will help you understand any guidelines.

• Contact List: At this time you will document whom you want to be contacted at the time of your death.

• Vital Information List: Come prepared with this information. It will be put on file to save your family from having to deliver it to the funeral home within 24 hours for the death certificate.

We recommend giving these some thought before meeting with an advisor, to ensure you choose what’s right for you.

Plan Your Funeral Service

The type of service you select is based on personal preference. Some people opt to have their service at the grave, in a funeral home or in a church. Regardless of your decision, the funeral home will handle all the details.

While you’ll choose things like your outfit, flower arrangements, music and or photos, you can go even further in personalizing your funeral. For example, one family honored their loved one by displaying his hot-rod cars. Some friends and family members even wore T-shirts with classic cars on them. You have a chance to make your send-off special for those mourning your loss.

Pay for Your Funeral

Your funeral is one of the largest purchases you will make in your lifetime, aside from houses and cars. Paying for your funeral in advance ensures that your family won’t face a hefty bill during a time of grief. You have the option to pay for your funeral all at once or through a flexible payment plan.

You can even get creative with extra touches for your family. For example, some people set aside funds to fly in family members for their funeral. Some parents even pay for their children to enjoy a spa day. These aren't common practice, but are nice ways to surprise your family and show your love for them a final time. 

While thinking about your funeral may be intimidating, the right advisor will put your mind at ease and lead you through the process.

At Busch Funeral Homes and Crematory Services, we have more than 100 years of experience in Northeast Ohio. We’re confident that our caring staff will provide an outstanding experience.


 Funeral Preplanning Financial Guide

Image via Flickr Tony Fischer


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