No one can escape the inevitable of planning a funeral of a loved one. As morbid as it may seem, having a funeral plan is encouraged so that the people you leave behind have some form of cash to help them with arrangements. But not only that, a funeral can become quite expensive, and while your family members might not see it as a burden, it can cripple them financially if not planned correctly. The question is, how does one plan for the funeral? And when is the best time to start planning? A simple answer here is that it’s all in the preparation. Let’s look at how you can plan for a funeral.
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Have a will drafted
While this may seem like something you don’t have to be concerned about during your lifetime, having your affairs in order spares everyone loads of trouble. Depending on where you live in the world, a will is a binding document that dictates how you want your assets to be shared with living relatives after your death. If you are making the decision and you are of sound mind, even if you leave all your possessions in an animal shelter, your wishes must be respected. This is the first and the most crucial step in planning a funeral.
Also, encourage your family members to get their wills sorted as soon as possible, so when you are planning their funerals, one aspect will be looked after. People may like to think about it this way; if you have children, you certainly don’t want them to fight each other. And if you have a partner who didn’t contribute to your success, while giving them some money is not frowned upon, you will naturally want your children to benefit.
Get a funeral policy or plan
There are diverse types of funeral plans, but it’s recommended to go for one that offers you the services you need and the amount required to have the ceremony you want. In some cases, you will also receive bereavement counselling and a range of other benefits.
Call the necessary people
If you are the family representative responsible for calling other family members in case of a death, it is a great idea to have everyone’s details on hand. This is a list of who to call in an event of a death and is something that can be prepared in advance. Remember you can also set up your own list so when you do pass away, your family has a list of people to contact.
Find a funeral home
This is the most crucial step since you won’t be allowed to bury your loved ones otherwise. In some countries, you must use a funeral home to have a funeral. Since this is an incredibly challenging time, a funeral director will be able to guide you on exactly what you will need to honour your loved one. Not only that, but most funeral homes also manage all the planning so that you can focus on healing through this tough time. But before you choose a funeral home, always check that your family member hasn’t already chosen one.
Burial or cremation
In some religions and cultures, a funeral is a set process that cannot be changed. However, millions of people still choose between a more traditional burial or cremation. You can choose either one, but the idea here is to honour your loved one. If religion and culture are not a factor, and your relative has not specified, then choose according to your budget, and remember burials can sometimes be expensive. Burial and cremation are not the only ways to bid farewell to your loved one; aquamations have gained a lot of traction too.
Choosing a coffin
You will need a coffin for the funeral. If you’ve opted for burial, this will, of course, be used for this process as well. You can honour your loved one with the best of the best or even opt for something more affordable; it is up to you. Some coffins are beautifully made and offer a lot in terms of elegance.
Always make a list and ask for pallbearers’ permission to join the proceedings. Make sure they are comfortable with the task. Then select the person who will conduct the eulogy. Here try to use someone who is not directly family. The reason for this is to give a unique perspective on your lost loved one. Once the pallbearers and eulogy are set up, then create and print your pew leaflets.
Next, you need to cater to the mourners after the service. The refreshments could be as simple as cake and tea or some warm foods and a bar. Add the details of whatever you decide to the pew leaflet.
On the day of the funeral
Hopefully, all your planning will take as much stress out of the day as possible. If the funeral is planned by an undertaker, everything should go smoothly. The final thing is to travel to the cemetery or crematorium for the ceremony and then gather together for something to eat and to celebrate their life.