Obituaries and funeral

How much it Cost to Bury Someone

| September 27, 2013 | 1 Comment

Cost to Bury Someone

France, the cemetery of Triel Sur Seine




Losing someone is never an easy thing to go through. If the deceased is someone very close to us and we have shared an emotional bond with, the hurt and grief that often manifests within us can not only consume our every thought but the pain of unsaid words, knowing we can never talk to them again and memories of moments with them can buckle our knees.

Though the pain and emotional longing might be almost too much for us to think or do anything else besides curl up and cry, if we are faced with the difficult task of arranging their funeral, we have little choice but to try and overcome our grief long enough to handle the arrangements in order for others to honor and show their respects. Still, it isn’t at all easy.

If the deceased had a prearranged funeral, then it becomes a great deal easier to get through. With a prearranged service, rather than having to find out what is expected of you and what all needs accomplished, as well as how to get it accomplished you only need to manage the arrangements and ensure it goes as the deceased wished. This also allows you to feel some comfort in knowing you ensured the deceased’s final wishes were honored.


There are some things you might want to add that you believe would be a nice addition or tribute to them even though the funeral was prearranged. Especially if a great deal of time has passed or new events had transpired since they made prearranged plans. Yet try to follow the main portions of the arrangement as closely to their wishes as you can or are allowed to do by law.

Not Prearranged or Prepaid

However, if the deceased had no prearranged funeral plans, then setting up an appointment with the funeral home director, or the church pastor as quickly as possible will help you tremendously. They will have the experience of overseeing funeral services and be able to provide you with details as to how the process of funeral planning is conducted.

They might also provide you with some ideas you might would like to add, as well as an appropriate chronological timeline as to how the events should possibly take place; bringing in clothes for the deceased’s viewing, scheduling a time for the viewing, bringing in pictures and/or special musical request, religious preferences and who will speak etc. wake and service.

All the information, details and what is to be expected of your role as planner, guidelines and even funeral home/church rules and regulations regarding services are invaluable and the weight this can lift off you is enormous.

***However, since the deceased themselves have little influence in how the service is conducted, you must be extremely cautious, thoughtful and respectful in ensuring other close friends and family are able to voice their opinions and are included as much as they wish, you can accommodate and is respectful to the deceased. This is extraordinarily important. The last thing you want is to anger, disrespect or deny involvement to the deceased’s spouse, parent, sibling, offspring or best friend. Remember, this is their last and only chance to provide involvement and respect as well. To deny them will cut wounds possibly too deep to ever heal. *** 

Cost to Bury Someone

There are several things involved in the burying of a loved one which can cost a great deal of money. If the deceased had funeral/burial insurance, the funeral director will likely be able to find this out in the event you or anyone else knows the name of the carrier and the amount of the policy. Yet even with a burial policy, there are still expenses in which may not be covered, added expenses which were not included at the time the policy was taken out, as well as the policy itself being inadequate to cover all the details.

Unfortunately, even those who took out burial policies many years ago were typically not insured only up to the amount of the modest or basic funeral costs during that period of time. This is especially possible in the case of elderly. Although they had planned well and in advance, the economy may be much different now.

Then, the costs may have been $6,000 for a basic/modest service and up to $8-$10,000 for an expensive service. Now, those amounts are much greater, which leaves the remainder for family to cover out of money left by the estate or out of pocket. In the event of the estate being responsible, this will be handled by the executor or probate.

If no policy exists, is found and there is no money from the estate to cover these expenses, then you might look to pay roughly $9,000 – $12,000 for a service without anything real fancy or flashy. The coffin can cost anywhere between $3,500 – $7,000, even more if specially designed or made of material costing more than that offered by the funeral home or coffin manufacturer. The funeral home earns a great deal of their income from the sales of coffins, so be wary of over-zealous parlor pitches directing attention to the more expensive choices.

Next will be the costs involved in things such as flowers, clothes for the deceased, preparing the body for viewing (hair, makeup etc.), embalming and fees for the director of the services or preacher. Then transporting the deceased to the grave site, excavating of the grave, lowering of the coffin and covering up the grave. Besides the coffin costs, the second most expensive detail (depending on grave location it could be the most expensive) is the burial plot itself.

All in all, the total cost of a basic funeral, minus flowers or other details included in the service, is roughly $10,000. This is enough to handle almost everything you will need.