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Advanced Planning
Pre-planning of funeral services has become a multifaceted and popular extension of estate planning. Many wonder of its importance, after all, the subject of death and loss are not usually common conversation, but the subject of death, though unpleasant, is unavoidable. We now know that good management of death (or any loss for that matter) is the key to continued physical and mental health. We realize that the family unit is one that may be miles apart in geography and miles apart in their thinking. The subject of pre-planning insures that the needs of your family, as well as your own personal needs regarding your funeral, are met to the satisfaction of everyone. Pre-planning assists your family in establishing a dialogue of wishes, needs, and wants between family members, and allows the individual who is pre-planning the opportunity to set limits and express their own wishes with regard to the funeral.

Funeral pre-planning has numerous merits over and above the family dialogue. Pre-planning affords the consumer the opportunity to ask questions, to gather information, and to find a funeral provider and a funeral service that meets their individual needs. Price information, as well as funeral information, is readily available from any local funeral home. Many funeral homes offer pre-financed funerals that place the burden of increased funeral costs onto the burial plan, not the consumer. We invite you to request information from us regardless of where you live or which funeral home "traditionally" serves your family when a death occurs.

Below are a few tips to get you started on the pre-planning process:
  • Share your family history with your family, record the names of your parents, your birth date, social security number, your preference of a funeral provider, preference of clergyman, and a brief idea of the type of burial service desired.

  • Share financial information, keep a list or folder of important papers and documents, and most importantly share it with your loved ones.

  • Write your own obituary (it's easy really, simply follow the style of your local newspaper's obituary column and fill in the blanks about you). You'll find that the obituary exercise is an exercise in life appreciation.

  • Request information from your local funeral director, make the time to ask questions and gather facts.

  • Ask your family if they have any thoughts or special needs with regards to the funeral (Oh, and by the way, timing is very important when addressing the subject...you may also find the need to bring up the subject a couple of times...be considerate and use an appropriate time to start the family dialogue.)

  • Considering the rising cost of funerals, discuss with your family the options available financially to provide the funeral.

  • Talk to a licensed funeral director. There is no cost in seeking advice or information from a reputable funeral director and your inquiries are held in strict confidence.

  • Consider pre-financing the funeral, but require your funeral provider to provide pre-financing options that you understand and feel comfortable with.

  • Choose a funeral provider that meets all of your needs, before the funeral, during the funeral, and for the sake of your loved ones....after the funeral.

The funeral is a celebration of one's life, and is intended to help the living. Your funeral should reflect your lifestyle, your economic status, the personal needs of your family, and your religious beliefs. Keeping in mind that death is simply a transition, not an end...design the funeral to be a new beginning for those you have left behind.