It’s something that none of us want to think about before it happens, but sooner or later most of us will have to contact a funeral director and arrange a loved one’s funeral.
When the time comes most people just want to get it over with and don’t want to worry about how much it is costing.
But with the average price of a funeral coming in at around $7,449, it’s not surprising that people are concerned about the rising costs and will avoid going into debt to pay for it.
According to Peter Erceg, Founder of eziFunerals, people could save a lot of money by shopping around, with funeral directors’ costs varying by as much as $2,525 depending on where you live and the choices you make. Despite this, most people still don’t get quotes from more than one funeral director and we generally go with the first one we contact’, he says.
Shop around and save money
You might not know it, but most of the larger funeral brands in Australia are owned by two public listed companies – InvoCare and Propel Funeral Partners. This means that there’s a good chance your first contact will be a funeral brand owned by one of the large funeral chains listed on the Australian Stock Exchange.
The large funeral chains are often able to charge a premium due to brand recognition and the belief that their services will be of a higher professional quality. They are also more likely to up sell bundled packages, so you may pay for things you don’t want or need. On the other hand, smaller independent funeral homes in Australia work for consumers and not shareholders of the publicly listed funeral companies. They are more flexible with pricing and often provide a more personalised service.
Plan the funeral yourself
eziFunerals provides a comprehensive online planning service, which allows you to record the sort of funeral you want for yourself or a loved one, before contacting a funeral director.
How it works:
- Go to www.ezifunerals.com.au
- Register as a new Funeral Consumer, or simply login to your account.
- Select the Plan A Funeral menu option and follow the steps provided in each section.
What information is recorded in a funeral plan:
- “Details of Person Making Arrangements” allows you to record details you or your family will need for official records.
- “Details of Deceased” allows you to record details of the person who has passed away or a death is impending.
- “Details of Committal” allows you to record how you would like you or your loved one to be put to rest.
- “Details of the Funeral” allows you to record your wishes regarding your or your loved one’s funeral.
Understand funeral costs
eziFunerals not only allows you to compare the costs of different funeral directors in your area, but also help you see how to bring the cost down by choosing different options.
The cost of a funeral is made up of funeral directors’ fees, coffin and third party expenses. The funeral directors’ fees cover things like arranging the funeral, looking after the body, and supplying the coffin, hearse and staff on the day.
The third party expenses include such things as cremation or burial fees, paying for a minister or celebrant, flowers, newspaper notices, order of service sheets and the costs of a wake.
Learn how to bring funeral costs down
The good news is that you can save a lot of money by cutting out some of the unnecessary expenses or doing some things yourself.
You can arrange your own memorial service and scatter the ashes somewhere the deceased would have wanted.
You can also save money by picking a cheaper coffin – either cardboard or wood effect.
Asking friends or family to carry the coffin rather than pallbearers, providing your own flowers and using an estate car rather than a hearse and a minibus rather limousines are all other ways you can bring the price down.
The wake could be at someone’s house with friends or family providing the food. And it’s worth knowing that some funeral directors give discounts if you pay in advance.
eziFunerals supports individuals and families cope with end of life decisions, death and funerals. We are an independent, Australian-owned and operated company, and are not a subsidiary of any other corporation. We are not part of any other funeral company. Founded by consumers frustrated by how difficult it was to get independent information, eziFunerals supports consumers plan a funeral, compare prices and select the right funeral director anywhere, anytime.