Pre-planning your own final arrangements makes sense. Since mortality faces us all, the importance of pre-planned arrangements should be emphasized. Everyone is going to need the services of a funeral home eventually and setting out your wishes in advance ensure your requests are known to your family and helps them through their time of grief. It’s never easy thinking about your own death, but learning about all your options in advance and coping with them ahead of time is easier for loved ones left behind.
The first step is talking with a funeral service professional. These professionals can guide you through the decisions that must be made when planning a funeral. Some of the topics to consider include: visitation; type of service (for example, religious or military); type, color and style of the casket, burial container, or urn; location of cemetery space; selection of memorials; choice of music; and the selection of any special readings. Many people choose to personalize the service to reflect their personality. This can be expressed multiple ways such as the location of the service or the type of music played.
Additional information may include important details for family members such as medical history, estate information, banking information, real estate holdings, insurance policies and will information. Consider talking with family members when pre-planning so they will understand your wishes and help you make decisions.
Another advantage of pre-planning your final arrangements is considering how to pay for it. To ease the burden on family members later, you can pay for the event in advance.
There are two types of contracts that are used when you pre-plan:
Guaranteed funded price contract: Services and merchandise are selected and paid for in full at the time the preneed contract is established. The prices are “locked in” at that time for the merchandise and services selected. Funds are trusted through the MFDA Master Escrow Plan.
Non-guaranteed price contract: Allotting available funds for your final wishes such as an insurance assignment. Services and merchandise selected at the time of a preneed arrangement but charged at the prices in effect at the time of death. With this option, survivors may have to supplement the account or make different choices to accommodate the funds available. If there is an excess of funds in the account, the estate of the deceased or beneficiary named receives the remainder.
Today is the best time to start. Pre-plan!