What to Avoid When Looking for Funeral Homes in the San Diego Area

The average funeral can cost anywhere between $6,000 to $10,000. You’re already grieving. Before you decide to pull out your checkbook, there are a few scams you should keep an eye out for, first. 

There are many different funeral homes in the San Diego area. With these 10 warnings, you can keep an eye out for the scams.

Here are 10 things to avoid when exploring funeral homes. With these tips, you can find the right funeral home and avoid a scam. 

Here’s everything you need to avoid when looking for funeral arrangements. 

1. The Casket Scam

A funeral home will try to sell you on the most expensive and impressive caskets first. They might try to convince you by explaining your loved one deserves the best. Then, they’ll show you the less expensive, less attractive model.

Finally, they’ll show you a mid-range coffin, knowing they’re most likely to sell you on this middle option.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) protects the rights of consumers under its Funeral Rule. Here, it says you have the right to request a full price list for all products and services the funeral home provides. You can even purchase a coffin or urn online if you choose.

Either way, you’re able to shop around. Make sure to find the coffin that works best for your budget.

Some funeral homes will only stop budget-friendly models in unattractive colors. Then, they’ll steer you away from this class of products toward a more expensive option.

To avoid these funeral scams, ask about the different options available for each product. Remember, there are thousands of caskets available online. You can always order one and have it delivered before the funeral.

2. The Casket Gasket Scam

Some funeral homes will also try to sell you on a casket’s “protective” features. This can include a rubber gasket that’s worth $20 but leads to a $200 upcharge.

You don’t need these “protective” features. In fact, some of these features can even make the casket explode if fluids and gasses from the body build up.

3. The Insurance Scam

A funeral director will likely ask if you have insurance. Usually, they ask to help figure out the best way to provide their products with as little out of pocket as possible. In some cases, however, they want to squeeze every cent out of your insurance policy.

To do so, the funeral home might steer you toward a package that’s priced at the amount your insurance company covers.

4. The Neighborhood Scam

At some point, the funeral home will ask for your address. However, they can use this information to feel out how much you can afford.

Remain informed by checking for prices online. Plan in advance. You can even take a friend to the funeral home with you so remain objective while you shop.

5. The Packaged Deal Scam

When a bunch of products and services are bundled together, they might look discounted. However, other fees are usually added to increase how much you’ll spend. The package ends up costing as much as if you’d bought a full-priced casket.

If you want to avoid funeral home mistakes, make sure to check the fees beforehand. 

6. The “Best Joint” Scam

There are many different San Diego funeral homes to choose from. Some funeral homes might try to convince you that they’re the best option in town. 

Make sure to take the time to explore your options before choosing a funeral home. Take the time to explore the grounds, too. 

7. The Urns Scam

There are thousands of cremation urns available online. Instead of buying from the funeral home, make sure to shop around online a little. You might find the same cremation urns the funeral home offers at a better price.

8. The Embalming Scam

Some funeral homes pushing embalming services. However, no state law requires routine embalming for every death. If the funeral home tries to push this service, save your money.

Look into embalming alternatives that avoid formaldehyde instead.

9. The Cremation Scam

By 2030, the number of people who will request cremation will increase to 71%. Some funeral home rip-offs include charging you more for cremation services. If they claim more is needed, or that you need a nicer casket for the cremation, you’re getting scammed.

10. Missing Links

What should you look for when researching different funeral homes in San Diego? Here are a few tips that can help. If the following items aren’t available, look elsewhere.

First, make sure everything is available in writing. If there’s a misunderstanding between you, the customer, and the funeral home, you can take a look at the contract. Before you sign everything, sit down and talk with someone to hammer out the details. 

Tell them exactly what you want and how you want to do it. Then, listen to them repeat the same request. That way, you know everyone is on the same page.

Next, make sure they provide an itemized price list.

The FTC Funeral Rules requires funeral providers to give customers an itemized list of goods and services. You should receive this list during the first face-to-face meeting. If you don’t receive it, make sure to ask for it.

You can use this list to make sure the cost of caskets, outer burial containers, or other services are in your price range.

You can also ask to see caskets that are in your price range. Changes are, they’ll try to show you the most expensive caskets first. Make sure the maximum cost is clear to avoid overspending.

If the funeral home doesn’t have a casket in your price range, keep looking.

Make sure to think twice about purchasing a sealed casket. Funeral homes suggest a sealed casket by suggesting it will delay the decomposition process. However, the FTC prohibits funeral homes from claiming sealed caskets will stop decomposition.

Next, make sure you don’t purchase services you don’t want. For example, a funeral home might suggest embalming. However, it’s not legally required.

With these tips, you can avoid funeral scams and make the funeral arrangements that suit your needs.

Looking for Funeral Homes in San Diego?: 10 Scams to Avoid

You’re probably already grieving. By avoiding these funeral scams, you can dodge one more worry. Instead, use these tips when looking for funeral homes in San Diego.

Need to start making funeral arrangements? Contact us today to get started.