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Woman looking at finances for a funeral

12
Sep

2018

Over the past few years, funeral prices have increased. You can best manage paying for your funeral, without leaving your family with any outstanding costs during a difficult time. There are a number of options to consider, from prepaid funeral plans to saving accounts.

The last thing you want, when you pass away, is to leave your family with the stress of your funeral's expense. In what is already a difficult time, you can make the process easier by preparing payment beforehand; making sure your loved ones don’t have the burden of cost.

There are a number of different ways to pay for your funeral, by preparing in advance. You can choose which one you think works best for you.

A prepaid funeral plan

Paying for your funeral using a funeral plan means that you’re putting aside the money and paying for the funeral in advance. You will either pay a lump sum or instalments to the funeral company who is providing your plan, or to the Funeral Director who will be carrying out the arrangements.

Your money will be looked after in one of two ways:

  • A Trust Investment – Placed into a trust fund with trustees
  • An Insurance Policy – Used to pay for your funeral when the time comes


These methods aim to safeguard the money you have invested until it’s needed. This means that your funeral can be paid for without incurring any additional costs to your family.

Funeral plans are also good for anyone looking to arrange and plan their funeral in advance. From the music during the service to whether you want to be buried or cremated, you decide your final farewell arrangements.

However, it is important to be aware that not all aspects of a funeral are covered in a funeral plan. The cost of a burial plot is often not included, as well as the costs of flowers or the wake following the funeral. Additionally, some providers will only pay a contribution towards burial costs or cremation. The additional costs would, therefore, have to be paid for by your family or by your estate following your passing.

To see some of the best funeral plans available, along with what services they provide, view our funeral plan cost comparison.

Savings accounts

If you don’t want to sign up for a funeral plan, but still want to make sure you are making a regular contribution to a fund for your funeral, then the option of a savings account may be a better choice for you.

With a savings account, you can still set up a direct debit to an account which will collect the money that you are looking to use for your funeral when the time comes. One advantage of a savings account over a funeral plan is that it will collect interest. You can look for an account that offers the best interest rates for you over a longer period of time.

You will also be able to set up the account in a joint name with a trusted family member so that, when it is needed, your family will be able to access your savings. If this isn’t possible, or you don’t feel like it’s the best option, your family will also be able to access your savings after your passing if they present a copy of the death certificate and itemised account from a Funeral Director to your bank.

The only issue with this method of paying for a funeral in this way is that the costs of funerals could increase during your saving period. If you don’t adjust your input in a similar manner, it may come up short when it's needed and your family could be forced to pay the excess.

Over 50s life insurance

When you pass away, an over 50s life insurance plan will pay out a fixed lump sum to your family. These promise a guaranteed amount of money and some insurance plans will have the potential to increase through the addition of an annual and final bonus.

One aspect to note about this option is that all insurance plans will come with a premium which will have to be paid, either daily or monthly. While this may not seem like much, in the long term and depending on when you pass away, you may end up paying as much in premiums as you would get paid out when the insurance is claimed.

However, one advantage of an over 50s plan is that they are offered without medical screening. This means that you could qualify for over 50s life insurance even if you have existing medical conditions that stop you from being able to afford a standard life insurance.

Paying from your estate

After you pass away, if you haven’t chosen any of the above options to prepay or prepare for the payment of your funeral, the option is available for your funeral to be paid from your estate.

The amount of money you have as your estate can differ depending on the situation of you, and your loved ones, when you die. If you have a valid Will, your estate will be dealt with by your executor.

This estate will include your money, property and other assets. These can be used for the payment of your funeral if they are your own. However, if you possess a jointly owned property, your share would pass directly to the surviving joint owner. Any property that is jointly owned will not form part of your estate, and neither would any assets that you have stated will go to certain people in your Will.

In order to release your funds upon your death, your family would have to present your bank with an itemised bill from a funeral director and a copy of your death certificate.

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