Ways to Avoid Being Overcharged for a Funeral
1 — If they have multiple locations, keep driving.
Some LARGE funeral firms advertise “several convenient locations”. Our largest competitor conducts five times as many services as we do – but they have ten times as many locations – on some very expensive real estate. Just remember, multiple locations mean high maintenance costs, high taxes, high utility bills, and high payroll costs. To pay for all that, they must have high prices.
2 — If they show you caskets costing more than $2,500, leave.
Most funeral homes mark up the caskets they sell as much as 200%-400% over wholesale. We mark up our caskets an average of about 50%. Moreover, we don't try to sell you caskets made of expensive materials, such as stainless steel, copper, or bronze. All caskets perform the same function: they act as a receptacle designed to allow the dignified display of the deceased during the visitation period and funeral ceremony, and as a protective container to hold the deceased after burial. Some caskets, known as “sealers”, are designed to be resistant to water, for a limited time. Just remember, no matter how much you spend, no casket will cause human remains to remain intact indefinitely!
3 — If their advertised “traditional funeral” price doesn't include a casket and limousine, look elsewhere.
Many funeral firms advertise a “traditional funeral service”, typically for about $2,500. But read the small print, which usually reads: “Does not include casket, motor equipment, or police escort”. Adding those items typically drives the price to more than $6,000. Many funeral firms go so far as to nickel and dime you for items such as register books and acknowledgement cards. The funeral packages we offer are complete, and include a premium steel casket, hearse, free limousine, motorcycle escort, register book, and acknowledgement cards; most packages also include a free memorial video.
If they won't show you their price list, walk out.
By law, every funeral home must present to you a General Price List, without your asking, for you to keep. If you ask for it and they vacillate, not only are they breaking the law – they're hiding something. That something is their high price.
4 — Consider a funeral service followed by cremation,
and eliminate expensive cemetery costs.
The cost of burial in most cemeteries can easily exceed $3,000. Contrary to what you may believe, cremation does not limit your choices, nor does the choice of cremation necessarily eliminate a funeral service. A funeral service followed by cremation need be no different from a funeral service followed by ground burial. If your choice is cremation, you can still have a traditional viewing and funeral ceremony, at our funeral home or in your church, using a rented casket, before cremation. Today's cremation options offer your family many opportunities to pay their respects in a dignified and respectful manner.
5 — Minimize the obituary you place in the local paper.
The average newspaper obituary can easily cost $300-$500 per day. As newspaper readership has declined, papers have tried to make up the lost revenue by raising their obituary charges. Most people reading the obituary page want to know one thing – the time and place of the funeral service. So put a small service listing in the newspaper, and place the expanded obituary online on our website.
6 — Avoid publicly traded corporations
The past several years, many large, publicly traded international corporations have been buying local funeral homes, and cemeteries – lots of funeral homes and cemeteries. They have shareholders to satisfy, and they must recover the substantial purchase prices they've shelled out, which means they must make more money every year. If you visit one of their funeral homes (or cemeteries), and they talk about serving your family with Dignity™, don't be surprised by their high prices.
*Dignity™ is a registered trademark of Service Corp. International, listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
7 — Call the professionals you know and trust,
who live and work in your community
Since 1981, the trained professionals at Taylor's have provided compassionate funeral care to the families o f Cuyahoga and surrounding counties. The respect shown to each family we serve has earned Taylor's a solid reputation of dignity and trust within the community. We're here for you.