Can’t Afford To Pay For Your Loved One’s Funeral?

Nowadays, dying is more expensive than ever with the average funeral costing $6,600. We all want to give our loved ones a good send-off but not everyone has the funds to do this. Fortunately, there are ways to make funeral costs more affordable, allowing you to deal with this difficult time without having to also consider financial challenges.

Check if your loved one had any schemes in place/savings

Some people may have taken out a scheme to pay for their funeral whilst alive. This could include a pre-payment funeral plan of a life insurance scheme. This is something worth looking into as it could mean prevent you paying for the funeral out of your own pocket. A bank may be able to tell you if such a scheme was in place. If your loved one took out a will, such schemes may have also been detailed.

If no such scheme was in place, consider whether they left any money to you or had any savings set up, which could be put towards their funeral. It’s likely that your loved one would have wanted you to use their money to pay for the funeral rather than your own, especially if using your own money is likely to put you in financial difficulty. Getting access to savings may require proof that you are the next of kin.

Start a fundraising campaign

Alternatively, you also be able to pay for the funeral by launching a fundraising campaign. Many friends and family are likely to want to chip in, whilst some strangers may even be sympathetic and be willing to donate some cash. You could even create a fundraising event in their memory. This could be something they would have loved doing such as a run or an event down their local bar, serving as an extra tribute on top of the funeral.

Get help from local charities

You may also be able to get help from a charity. There are many charities that are willing to provide aid for people with low incomes for tragic circumstances such as funerals. You’ll usually have to fill out an application form to see if you are eligible, whilst you may be able to have a face to face talk with other charities.

Consider legal compensation

In certain cases, you may be able to get legal compensation for a wrongful death. This could involve anything from a work-related death to a road accident. You’re best looking for a law firms that specialise in you niche case such as aviation accident lawyers for an air disaster. Many law firms won’t charge you if your claim isn’t successful, which is why it’s often worth enquiring into.

Consider a loan

Ideally you should never have to get into debt over funeral expenses, however, if all other forms of funding are out of the questions, there are specialist loans out there for funerals. Many of these specialist funeral loans have low interest so you won’t end up paying large amounts of extra fees in the future. In some cases, funeral companies may offer finance schemes so that you don’t have to go through another lender. Getting accepted for one of these loans may require you to have a good credit score – if you have a bad credit score, you may only be able to take out high-interest loans which aren’t ideal.

Think about what your loved one would have really wanted

You may feel that your loved one deserves a grand exit with lots of flowers and an expensive casket, but consider whether your loved one would really want you to put yourself into financial trouble for them. Focus on the most important thing, which is getting all their friends and family together to pay their respects and celebrate their life.

By doing away with all the extras you can often save a lot of money on a funeral. For example, many people pay huge amounts for flowers when a single flower display or wreath could make more of an impact. When it comes to burials, consider whether you really need a gasketed casket or protective inner lining – all of this can add on huge amounts. Meanwhile, you may not feel the need for a fancy urn in the case of a cremation, especially if you’re going to scatter the ashes anyway.

Most people go through funeral companies, but you can sometimes source caskets and urns more cheaply by looking for them yourself online. If you still want to use a funeral company for other aspects, you can do – they cannot disallow you from using a casket or urn that you sourced elsewhere.

Of course, you don’t have to hold a ceremony at all. Whilst something does need to be done with the body, you don’t need an official funeral service by law. As a result, you could simply host an event at home that gets everyone together and function as a celebration without having to fork out on a venue or funeral organizers. Meanwhile, if they didn’t care whether they were buried or cremated, consider whether they would have wanted the option of being donated to science – this is completely free and could result in their body being put to a noble cause.


Arnel Ariate is the webmaster of Money Soldiers.

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