Helping Families With Funeral Pre-Planning

January 30, 2023

Our Advice and Tips for Funeral Directors

Meeting the Rising Trend of Funeral Pre-Planning

People of all ages are interested in proactive estate planning: preparing a will, determining advance healthcare directives, purchasing a cemetery plot, and pre-planning funeral or memorial services. While this process can be triggered following a major life event—such as an illness or the death of a family member—it does not have to be.

Most funeral plans are made at the time of need. The International Cemetery, Cremation & Funeral Association (ICCFA) defines “at need” to be in the immediate aftermath of a death. The surviving family members must make funeral plans while experiencing emotional trauma, guilt, time pressure, and other feelings. When you choose to make your plans “pre-need,” you have the time to carefully consider your selections, research costs, and make sound decisions for the future.

Planning your own funeral is a unique endeavor for any person: It does require the individual to acknowledge their own mortality. However, unlike what some people might assume, the planning process does not need to feel sad or heavy. To the contrary, it can feel productive, fulfilling, and offer the individual great peace of mind—and more younger people are interested in this route.

In 2020, the National Funeral Directors Association found that 15.8 percent of Americans aged 18 to 39 think people should pre-plan their funerals before they’re 40. This is something that only 7.9 percent of people over age 60 believed. 

As funeral professionals, you have the opportunity to offer experienced guidance along the way. We have several recommendations as you approach this process.

  • Take care to explain the difference between pre-arranging and pre-funding. Both things—selecting funeral-related services and products and paying in advance—can be done together, but they don’t have to be.

  • Focus on how empowering this process can be for the individual. They make their own decisions, control the funeral costs, and relieve the future burden on their family.

  • Consider becoming certified by the NFDA through their Certified Preplanning Consultant program. Becoming certified helps you promote your advanced funeral planning services to your local community and enhances your credibility.

  • Be prepared to answer many questions, specifically regarding pre-funding. They may ask, how is my pre-fund money invested? How will I know my money is secure? What happens if the costs of the services I’ve chosen fluctuate over time? Who will coordinate my arrangements? 

Because of our experience and wide network of agents we often receive calls from funeral directors and pre-need counselors with questions on pricing and logistics and our team can help answer these questions. We are also here to help you with any day-to-day challenges, with services ranging from domestic shipping coordination to cremation and livery. Request a Quote