You’re alive and well, things are going well, and life is going your way. Believe it or not, it might be the perfect time to plan your funeral.
It’s not exactly the most pleasant topic, but the last thing you want to do is stick your loved ones with a funeral bill when you die. Average funeral costs are in the thousands of dollars. Generally, this is not something you want your grieving family to worry about.
If you’ve thought about planning ahead for such an event, you may have thought that perhaps you should prepay funeral costs so that when the event comes, you’re covered. While you’re taking care of the arrangements, there are a few other items you should consider as well.
THE PREPAID FUNERAL PLAN
A prepaid burial plan isn’t as much a product as it is a preparation strategy. It’s simply taking steps to layout everything connected to your funeral, and prepaying the funeral home. Depending on the wishes of you and your family, costs could include a casket or cremation, the service, the headstone, obituary information, and sometimes even medical care in your final days.
PLANNING AHEAD IS ESSENTIAL
People may have different opinions on prepaid funeral plans but generally can agree on one action—plan well in advance.
When you pass away, your family will have a lot of decisions to make on top of coping with the loss. The decisions are often complicated financial decisions that the family doesn’t have experience making. Most people do not plan many funerals or know anything about estates and probate.
Preplanning your funeral allows your family to put your plan into action with the confidence of knowing that they’re acting on your wishes. They are then free to say goodbye in their own way.
TYPES OF PREPAID FUNERAL PLANS
Some people elect to not only plan their funeral but prepay it as well. You should be cautious when pre-paying for these services. Funeral directors and service providers are not bad people or businesses, but their situations can change as well. If you want to weigh your options, some types of plans you can get are:
Whole-life policy. You pay into the whole-life policy like a regular life insurance policy. When you pass, your beneficiary receives the payout to pay for the funeral arrangements. Some states require that the funeral home director be named the beneficiary, while others do not.
Burial insurance. Burial insurance is a policy that covers the cost of all expenses when you die. The beneficiary can use the death benefit however they choose.
Revocable trust. When you set up a revocable trust, you will often sign a contract to pay for your funeral in installments. The funeral director deposits your payments into an interest-bearing account. At the time of your passing, the funeral director (or whomever you choose), also the trustee, uses the funds to pay for your funeral.
Irrevocable trust. An irrevocable trusts allow you to prepay your funeral expenses Much like a revocable trust, you can create a plan that pays directly to the funeral director. Unlike a revocable trust, this is a permanent trust that can’t be changed.