Who should cover the costs of my funeral? What are the advantages of investing in a pre-paid funeral plan?


Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The rising cost of funerals is constantly in the media. As a direct consequence, the number of people taking out pre-paid plans is growing at an unprecedented rate.

Inflation, salary increases, rising costs of fuel and raw materials and third party rates such as crematorium charges are among the many factors pushing up the costs of funerals year on year.

Over the past six months sales of pre-paid funeral plans rose by 21 per cent.

That figure is expected to keep rising over the next 10 years, with sales of pre-paid plans forecast to exceed all other payment options.

There are many advantages to taking out a pre-paid funeral plan. With a standard funeral including disbursements averaging around £3,400, most families would be unable to afford this in one lump sum. A pre-payment option allows them to spread the cost over 12, 24, 36 or 60 months. Also, while the cost of funerals continues to rise, a pre-paid plan would stay at the same rate whether the person lived for another year, or another 20 years or more.

The Co-operative Funeralcare plans include gold, silver and bronze options – depending on how standard or detailed you would like your service to be. Each package is priced accordingly and allows you to choose how much or how little you want included at your funeral. Alternatively we offer bespoke plans for those who know exactly how they want their funeral. When taking out a plan we will establish the finer details of your preferred funeral but of course you are allowed to change or adapt your ideas accordingly at any time.

Due to increased demand we recently introduced a new ‘unattended funeral’ offering – which is the cheapest service available for those looking for a basic service, or a cost effective option.

Costing £1,550, there is no service, no mourners attend, no ceremonial vehicles, such as a hearse and a basic wooden coffin is used for cremation. We treat the deceased of course with the same level of respect and dignity and the cremated remains are eventually handed back to the next of kin.

We also work in partnership with Co-operative Legal Services to offer all our clients general legal advice on a range of other issues surrounding wills and probate.

Client families using our services are offered a free initial consultation over the phone. They may also meet face to face with legal experts for free and with no obligation.

These services are particularly popular among our client families arranging their loved one’s funeral. We offer them at a more competitive price than a high street solicitor and they allow our client families to take care of the legalities at the same time as arranging the funeral. We are offering them a totally rounded one-stop shop service.

Darryl Smith, General Manager of the Heart of England Co-operative Society’s Funeral Division, said: “As with most services and products, the cost of funerals is rising and will continue to rise. People are increasingly planning their funerals in order to ensure they have budgeted accordingly and to have peace of mind.”