Funeral costs vary greatly depending on the type of funeral or memorial service you are planning. On average, a funeral can cost between $6,000 - 7,000, usually with additional costs for burial. However, many funeral can run well over $10,000, depending on many upgrade and additional services. Whether you are using funeral or burial insurance, or paying for the funeral directly, you should understand the expenses associated with funeral and memorial services. Below are some common funeral and memorial expenses. Also see our article on funeral and memorial ideas and funeral planning checklist.
Funeral Costs can include the following:
Professional funeral or mortuary services
Professional funeral home services can cost about $1,000 - $2,000. This is a mandatory fee for doing business at the funeral home. Included in these costs are staffing during visitation and funeral services, securing permits, preparing the death certificate and housing the body and managing funeral arrangements. Don't be afraid to ask the specifics of what this price includes, since it can vary widely by funeral home.
These expenses can include transporting body from the place of death, funeral limousines, and transportation for the family during services. This generally costs about $450
In many cases, embalming is not required by law. Embalming services can cost about $500. Be sure to ask if embalming will be necessary.
A casket is usually the most expensive item you'll buy if you are having a traditional funeral. Caskets vary widely in style and price. They can be made of wood, steel (bronze, stainless steel, steel, and copper), fiberboard, fiberglass, plastic as well as bidegradable materials. Casket prices range from $2,000 to $10,000. For more information see our article on funeral caskets.
Outer Burial Containers -- burial vaults or grave liners
The vault or liner is placed in the ground before burial to protect the casket. The cemetery may require a vault or grave liner. Check with the burial grounds to determine whether this is needed. Vaults and liners can range from $750 - $1,000.
Use of Facilities
Use of funeral homes facilities and chapels for wakes, viewings, and services may be an additional cost. Also use of audio visual equipment may be additional. These prices can range between $200 - $500. Be sure to ask if these services can be included in the professional services charges.
Burial expenses can include the burial plot which can cost between $1,000 - $2,000, plus additional costs for digging and preparing the grave site, with may cost approximately $500.00
Headstone or Grave Marker
This can be a significant expense that is usually not included in the funeral or burial costs. Raised headstones can range between $500 -- $2,000.
Funeral Flowers can also be a significant expense. Sometimes the funeral home will ask for cash up front to purchase flowers on your behalf. Wreaths, Sprays and baskets are customarily used. These large flower displays are usually $125 and up. Keep in mind that others will be sending flowers, and those flowers can be used during the funeral service.
Funeral Printing and Programs
Funeral Programs, Photo collages, prayer cards and other printed items can add up. Generally, funeral programs from a printer can cost about $300 - 500 (for about 200 programs). Funeral program prices can vary based on quantity, size of program paper, layout (bifold, trifold, graduated styles) and whether you want a custom design. You can also purchase funeral program templates online, and print them at home or take them to a printer or office copy shop.