There are just over 19,000 funeral homes in the United States as of 2019.
With so many choices to choose from, it can be a daunting task for survivors to find a funeral home that will meet their needs.
What do you need to know before you get started to make the process easier?
Read on to learn what to look for in local funeral homes so you can get the service and care you need while you say farewell to a loved one.
Examine Your Needs
When you are researching local funeral homes, one of the first things you should do is think carefully about what is most important to you.
For some people, a convenient location in close proximity to your cemetery, place of worship or home is most important.
For others, it is the most affordable funeral home possible. You might be concerned about ample parking or accessibility for wheelchairs and people with mobility issues.
Whatever your needs are, write them down on a list of highest priorities. Then, when you begin comparing funeral homes, you know exactly what you are looking for.
Choose the Type of Arrangement
There are so many options to choose from. You might choose to have no visitation or a multi-day viewing.
Green burials are affordable and eco-friendly. You might want to consider that if your loved one was focused on green alternatives.
Or, you might prefer a traditional burial with embalming, visitation and a full funeral service.
Whatever you prefer, write it down in as much detail as you can. This is probably the biggest factor to help you find the funeral home for your needs within your budget.
Contact Local Funeral Homes and Compare Prices
The next step to finding affordable funeral care is to make a list of the homes in your area.
Be aware that the same option might have a difference of several thousand dollars from one home to another. It’s wise to get pricing from the start.
Ideally, you want to get pricing for your chosen funeral arrangement for around six local funeral homes.
If the quotes you get aren’t fitting within your budget, you may have to look further afield or choose a more affordable arrangement. Sometimes you can stretch your budget by taking out expenses such as visitation and embalming.
Meeting With the Funeral Directors
Once you’ve narrowed your list down, you should schedule an arrangement conference with the various funeral directors.
This meeting can occur in a person either in your home or at the funeral home. Or it can happen over the phone if that is more convenient.
This meeting is your chance to ask questions, learn about the services this particular funeral home offers and get a sense of the atmosphere of the funeral home.
You might forget your questions during these meetings so it’s a good idea to have them written down so you can refer to them. It’s wise to bring a friend or family member that is less emotionally invested in the funeral to balance your impressions.
You might ask the funeral director to go over the price list with you. This is a good chance to meet the staff, see the facility and review the urn and casket options.
During this meeting, you should not feel rushed or pressured into any particular choice.
Things to Look For in a Funeral Home
As with most things in life, the lowest price is not necessarily the best option. There are various factors to consider when choosing funeral care for your loved one.
Here are some of the key things to watch out for.
Caring and Compassionate Staff
The customer service of funeral homes should be paramount. After all, all clients who visit this business are facing a very difficult time.
Compassionate and sincere staff can make this experience much better for you. When you talk to the funeral director and other staff, they should be caring and professional. If not, this funeral home is probably not a good choice for you.
Makes Good Use of Modern Technology
You might not think that technology is important for a funeral home. But in fact, there are many ways that good technology can enhance the experience for you and your guests.
For example, a good funeral home can help families create memorial videos, provide a user-friendly online memorial page where guests can sign a digital guestbook and send flowers. Some funeral homes even offer webcasting services for friends and family that can’t attend the funeral in person.
If these options are valuable to you, look for a funeral home that uses the latest technology to enhance their offerings.
Offers Grief Resources
One thing to look for in a funeral home is one that provides additional services for the grieving survivors.
The best funeral homes offer support to you beyond the funeral itself. Look for a home that offers grief counseling, grief support groups or reading materials you can use.
Some offer additional education via newsletters. Others provide excellent after-care such as an in-home visit or phone call. You might want a holiday commemoration service to honor your beloved departed.
As you may know, grief is a journey. It doesn’t end with the funeral. A good funeral home will help you along that path towards healing and peace.
Thanks for reading. We hope this article on finding the best local funeral homes helps you find one that can help you get through this painful time.
Show your love to your dearly departed loved one by dedicating them to a special sanctuary on top of the hill. Learn all that La Vista Memorial Park & Mortuary has to offer you.