Arranging a funeral is exhausting. Selecting the best funeral director can be a challenging task during a time of your life that is inundated with sadness and turmoil over the loss of a loved one. When it comes to hiring an executive to manage the funeral, there are many components to consider beforehand.
From their reputation, price point, and general demeanour, almost every funeral director will have slight variations in the services they offer.
However, there are relevant standards that should be considered when choosing someone to handle the death of someone you care about. To educate and assist you in your search, we have created this guide to offer help deciding on the right funeral director.
One of the first areas to consider when making your choice of director is to determine whether they belong to the following governing bodies for the UK:
By belonging to these governing bodies, you can be certain that the director you are considering is following the standards that are set forth by the government and industry, ultimately qualifying them to maintain their status and reputation.
These organisations will also have a cohesive complaints procedure in place, along with a wide range of services for various prices. If there is ever a moment that you are doubting a funeral director, give either of these associations a call to request feedback.
Depending on many factors (cremation vs. burial, location, transportation) the price of a funeral can be extremely costly. It is an unfortunate truth that not all people have the money to plan the send-off they envisioned, and ultimately the price is going to be one of the largest factors to consider when picking a funeral director. With expenses reaching into the thousands, selecting the best funeral director for your budget can be a challenge, to say the least.
More often than not, the cost will typically include
But other factors that may impact the budget include whether you have chosen cremation or burial, doctor’s fees, the cost for the burial plot, and memorial expenses (priest, rabbi, minister, imam). What is beneficial to note when it comes to your budget is what NAFD and SAIF have stipulated regarding the pricing standards that funeral directors are obligated to follow.
When an agency goes above the threshold that is set for those services, then they can lose their memberships to these organisations. Recognising this, if you feel suspicious about the prices of a particular place, it is important to consult with the governing bodies that are in charge of them before settling your first payment.
If you can’t afford all of the cost, you should know that in the UK, the Social Fund will award up to £700 for people that are on income support. There are also some that may qualify for up to £2000 in special circumstances.
Most funeral directors want you to cover everything up front, but you should be offered the option to pay fees at a later date. This is typically within a 30-day window of the ceremony. Also, many directors usually offer the option for a payment plan, so make sure to check in on this as well.
Ultimately, how you want the service to flow is up to you. But it is important to find someone you feel is going to do everything he or she can to adhere to the deceased’s and family’s wishes for the service.
Every family is different, with some wanting a more traditional service, others requesting a ‘celebration of life’ funeral, and some conducting a formal and regimented burial.
Many can experience a backlash from family members when it comes to planning the service, so it is important to select a director that you are sure will follow the wishes of your family, has experience dealing with these instances, and overall makes you feel comfortable. They should be the advocate of the deceased and a support system for the entire family.