I was aghast by the cost of my father’s funeral. Now that I looked back, could it be cheaper? Yes, definitely! At the time of grief and shock, the last thing that was on my mind was to look at the nitty gritty details of the cost of my father’s funeral. A lot of costs were spent on a whim because we knew that there was money in the estate to take care of the cost.
It took us at least 3 hours to go through and pick out the services we want at the funeral home. To be honest, we really just want to get out of there as soon as possible.
Here is the breakdown of the cost:
We spent $16,888 on the casket! Yes, we did. It was mostly an emotional purchase. Since our dad did not leave specific instructions as to what kind of casket he would like to be buried in, we made the decision and found one that we thought he would have liked EVEN THOUGH the price tag was $16,888.00. There were other cheaper caskets that ranges in the $5,0000 range, but we decided to go with the pricier on because we felt that we owed it to him (yes, feelings of guilt overwhelmed us).
Now looking back, I think we could have saved on the transportation cost. We probably didn’t need the Funeral Service Vehicle as we could have driven to the funeral home ourselves behind the funeral coach (the one with our dad in it for one last drive around the house before the burial).
We wanted the service to be on a Saturday so that it is more convenient for people to attend so we couldn’t save on the extra cost.
As for the cost of the plot, the plot is for both my mom and my dad. The plot is located very close to the city, so they paid a bit of a premium. They share the same plot. They bought the plot a 5 years ago and if we had bought the plot now, it would have cost us at least another $25,000.00. Believe it or not, plots are like real estate, the price of the plots keeps going up due to the shortage of space in the city.
Not all funeral services will cost as much as $25,000.00. If you want to save costs so you can leave more money in the estate, you can always specify what you want in your will. That way, it will save your family the troubles of trying to make a decision for you in times of grief.
Paying for the Service:
Since we don’t have any joint account with our father, we were unable to access his funds right away. It was a lot of email exchanges with the bank and running to bank with the appropriate documents to have the funds ready to pay for the funeral service. Luckily our father had a WILL which made things A LOT easier (I really can’t imagine what it would have been like without a will).
If we couldn’t access the funds, well, we would have paid it out of our emergency fund (here’s another use of emergency fund!).
Well that’s the cost of a funeral in the Greater Vancouver. I am not sure how it compares to other cities in North America.
~The Money Pincher ~