The rising cost of funerals
Since 2004 the average cost of a funeral in the UK has risen by an astonishing +112%. This has increased the average cost to more than £4,000.
Unfortunately, without putting the right provisions in place, the responsibility of paying for your funeral falls to your loved ones.
According to a recent SunLife report, only 58% of people have adequate funding in place to pay for their funeral.
This means that for the remaining 42%, their families are often left having to foot the bill.
To cover these expenses, many people have to borrow money, sell belongings, use personal savings or even take out a loan.
An accessible, popular and cost-effective solution is to take out a prepaid funeral plan.
Putting adequate cover in place
A prepaid funeral plan allows you to cover the cost of your funeral, locking in today’s prices and avoiding rising costs.
By 2036 funeral costs are projected to have risen to £12,749, up from £1,920 in 2004.
Taking out a funeral plan ensures that when your time comes, you do not have to pass the financial burden on to your family.
The plan will also allow you to decide on the details of the ceremony, negating the stress on your family from having to make arrangements at an already difficult time.
Less than 4 in 10 people have told anyone what they would want from their funeral.
Unlike life insurance, funeral plans do not require ‘acceptance’, meaning that they can be taken out by anybody regardless of health or age.
Therefore, if you are in later life or in poor health and unable to secure life cover, taking out a funeral plan is a good way of ensuring your family are protected.
Payment of funeral plans
There are various different levels of plan and payment methods available to suit your budget and taste.
Different tiers of funeral plan vary on the service and additional aspects you would like the plan to cover.
These range from:
- A value funeral which comprises of a basic coffin and no service for your family to attend, to
- A premier package including a superior coffin, funeral procession and a choice of funeral service date and time.
The plan chosen will obviously determine the amount you pay.
Payment options include:
- A simple one-off payment
- A one-off deposit followed by 12 interest-free monthly payments
- An instalment payment plan requiring smaller payment amounts over a period of 2-30 years
(Please note, the instalment payment plan does incur interest).
Dying before your funeral plan is paid
What happens if you die before full payment of your funeral plan will depend on the payment option you chose.
Choosing to pay for your funeral either in 12 monthly payments or via an instalment payment plan always runs the risk that you could die before the balance has been settled.
What happens next in this instance would be determined by how you chose to pay and how much of the balance had been paid.
If you pass away, having chosen to pay via 12 monthly payments, the remaining balance will be requested from your estate or all payments made can be returned to your family minus a cancellation fee.
Dying within the first 12 months of an instalment plan will result in all monies paid into the plan being returned to your estate.
If you die after the first 12 months of an instalment plan, the remaining balance will be requested from your estate.
Life insurance vs a funeral plan
Frequently the terms ‘funeral plan’ and ‘life insurance‘ are used interchangeably, however, they are significantly different products – each with benefits.
As mentioned above, a funeral plan allows you to pay for your funeral at today’s rate.
The money is paid directly to the funeral director and all that is required of your loved ones is a phone call to your chosen funeral parlour.
Life insurance on the other hand commonly provides a much higher level of cover.
Upon your death, your loved ones are provided with a lump sum pay out. This sum can then be used by your beneficiaries as they wish.
Common uses of a life insurance pay out include full mortgage repayment, clearing outstanding debts, meeting future living costs and providing an inheritance.
Whilst the sum from a life insurance policy can also be used to cover the cost of a funeral, it will mean that your funeral will cost the going rate at the time of death.
Not necessarily a funeral plan or a life policy
Taking out a funeral plan and life insurance policy simultaneously can mean securing the cost of your funeral at today’s prices, whilst also providing your family with a cash lump sum.
Obviously, this full life/funeral insurance solution is subject to your available budget. Remember, as you approach retirement your available budget is likely to change, so consider your long-term plan.
As the UK’s largest life insurance broker, we are able to provide you with both funeral plan and life insurance quotes to suit your needs and budget.
What’s more, our award-winning brokerage service is completely free to use!
Compare funeral plans
At Reassured, we will provide you with multiple quotes, as well as any information required regarding the various funeral plans. This allows you to make an informed decision.
All of the funeral plans we provide are fully regulated by the Funeral Planning Authority (FPA) ensuring you and your money are protected.