Funeral Planning for Senior Citizens

Many people may think that planning their own funeral is tempting fate or perhaps just too depressing to think about. The truth is that it doesn’t have to be at all depressing and it’s certainly not tempting fate. In fact, the opposite is true in both cases. Not only are you only ensuring the financial security of your family when planning your funeral but you can also be very happy to know that even after you’re gone, you will be doing all you can do to take care of them and protect them from extravagant costs and tough decisions. There are many funeral planning services available that will guide you through the process and make it easier.  Or you may want to do the planning on your own.

If you seek help from a funeral planning service, a counselor from a planning service is first likely talk to you about basic funeral items such as how you choose to be buried. This could be traditional burial, cremation, being buried in a mausoleum or another choice if you have something different in mind. For whichever final resting place you choose, there are likely to be more choices to go along with it. If you decide to be buried, you will need to pick out a casket. If you choose to be cremated, you will need to pick out an urn, or make it clear you want your ashes scattered in a specific place. 

If you are planning on your own, when your choices have been made, you need to put your desires in writing and give them to various family members, asking them to be responsible for following your choices.  Many senior citizens are choosing to have a celebration of their life, with no casket or body present, in place of a traditional funeral service. And many locations chosen are outside the traditional religious institution.

Let the funeral planning service know, or be sure to put in writing for other family members, specific details about the funeral that you want such as a certain song, or a slideshow played. At the same time, be sure to include things that you don’t want – a eulogy, a formal service, etc. Also be sure to create a list of locations where you would like to have the service/celebration and, again, give copies of your desires to members of the family that you think will be most heavily involved in planning your funeral. Also be sure to give one to your funeral planning service, if you have chosen to use one. If you haven’t already done so up to this point, now is also the time to choose your burial plot, if you want to be buried. You may want to buy adjacent plots for family members at the same time.

These are just a few basic steps in planning your own funeral. Be sure to be as specific as possible and be clear about things you want and don’t. And remember the burden you are relieving your family of when they are no longer responsible for making very hard choices during their time of bereavement.