Not everyone will feel comfortable with the idea of planning for their death, so it is often the case that someone can find themselves left to arrange a funeral for a loved one without any clear idea of what's involved. Without taking the time to research funeral arranging, it can be easy to accept whatever the funeral home suggests, but that isn't always best for you or what the departed individual would have wanted. A good funeral home should always be willing to offer advice and suggestions when needed, but they should value your input at every stage and do whatever they can to ensure that events unfold in a way that is right for you. Here are three questions you should consider to ensure that your loved one gets the funeral they would have wanted.
How much should the funeral home do?
Funeral arranging can be a complicated process, and it is great to have a funeral home to work with, but they don't have to do everything. You can be responsible for as little or as much of the funeral arranging as you wish. If you have the right equipment and legal permissions, then you could undertake everything yourself, although it often makes sense for the funeral home to take on at least the harder elements such as moving and storing the body. You can also ask them to arrange the burial or cremation site since they will have the appropriate contacts to do this and many burial grounds won't deal directly with the public.
What will happen at the service?
Having a funeral service is not a compulsory part of funeral arranging, but if you want to hold a service, then you can plan it any way you wish. You can ask a pastor, priest or secular celebrant to lead the service, or you can do it yourself. You can have every member of the congregation speak, or you can do everything yourself.
What fees are involved?
In many ways, the cost of the funeral arranging will be dictated by how much you ask the funeral home to do. If you want them to arrange the flowers, to place a notice of death in the newspapers and to offer you an all-inclusive service, then the cost will be higher than if you do much of the work yourself. One cost that you can't avoid is the cost of the death certificate and the other legal forms that must be completed to register the death. If you are concerned about the funeral arranging cost, then make sure you ask for an itemised bill so that you can see exactly where the money is being spent.