Recently, a consumer wrote to us to ask about funeral insurance. Naomi wanted to know whether funeral insurance, which she had seen for as low as $9 a month, was a good investment. In fact, she was pretty sure it wasn’t, as the coverage was only $750—not even enough to pay for a funeral! So what is going on with these funeral insurance policies?
What’s the Best Way to Plan for Funeral Expenses?
Naomi raises a good point. Funerals and burial services can be expensive. When you combine the cost of funeral and burial services, you could be spending several thousand dollars. Depending on the type of casket and monument you select, they could cost another few thousand dollars. All together, end-of-life expenses can total well over $10,000.
With end-of-life expenses being so high, it makes sense that many people want to plan in advance to cover the costs. In some cases, you can prepay for end-of-life expenses with a specific funeral home. But if you don’t want to do that, there are other options to set aside money for those expenses.
As Naomi has pointed out, most funeral insurance programs are simply not worth the premiums. In fact, you may end up paying more in premiums than the policy is worth. But other types of insurance are more helpful. For instance, life insurance payouts can be used to cover funeral services. Life insurance policies vary greatly, and TrustDALE Insurance can help you find the policy that is best for you.
Reducing end-of-life Expenses
Funerals, burial, caskets, and monuments are all expensive, though some options can reduce your costs. Cremation is typically cheaper than burial. When you choose cremation, you eliminate the cost of preparing the body, purchasing a casket, purchasing a burial plot, and the burial services themselves.
If cremation isn’t right for you, another increasingly popular option is green burial. Green burial is meant to be more environmentally friendly and natural than traditional burial. The exact details and limits of green burial vary by state, but typically a green burial forgoes embalming and other chemical preparations. In place of a traditional casket, the deceased is placed in a less expensive biodegradable casket, or even just shrouds. Some states require a cement burial chamber, but in some states, green burial dispenses with that, as well. Green burial also may not include a traditional monument, eliminating another costly aspect of conventional burial.
Veterans and their families may be entitled to a military funeral, which includes free burial in a national cemetery and a standard grave marker. This can cost thousands of dollars less than burial in a private cemetery, though there are still some costs to account for.
The Bottom Line
Funeral insurance is rarely worth the premiums. However, there are other ways to plan for end-of-life expenses. You can prepay for your funeral costs or plan to cover the costs with life insurance. As with any foreseeable expenditure, you can also set aside money in savings to cover the expenses. For more information on how you can cover end-of-life expenses with life insurance, turn to TrustDALE Insurance.