What Are the Steps to Planning a Funeral?

The steps to planning a funeral include drawing a will, planning the actual funeral, and deciding on the type of ceremony. After that is done, the total cost must be totaled.

A will should be drawn up regardless of a person's wealth, or lack thereof. If a will isn't drawn up, the state takes over once the person is dead. Many lawyers specialize in the formation of wills, so obtaining and organizing important documents to take to them is vital. These documents might include an inventory of real estate, bank statements and/or life insurance policies. The will must be signed and witnessed by two people, and an executor must be chosen to administer the will.

In terms of planning the funeral, talking to funeral directors is a good start. Directors often discuss things like the price of embalming and sometimes even caskets. Also, a method for body disposition must be decided. If burial is the preferred method, a cemetery plot must be chosen. If cremation is chosen, plans must be made to determine what to do with the ashes.

Types of ceremonies that can be chosen include a memorial service, traditional service or church service. After finally tallying the total cost of the funeral, a method of payment should be determined, such as prepaying with bank savings and/or annuities.