Wading Through Grief to Plan Funerals: Tips and Coping Strategies

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3 Ways to Cut the Cost of Your Loved One's Funeral

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The sadness of losing a loved one is enough to endure without the huge expense needed to lay them to rest. You don't begrudge the money, but perhaps you simply don't have it. Speak to the funeral directors about how you can lower the costs. By taking on some of the jobs yourself, you'll save money and get to add personal touches. These jobs can be undertaken by novices and may help keep your mind busy in those early days of grief.

A Wreath

The cost of funeral flowers can be astronomical, but you can make your own wreath to save money and add a loving touch. Children can be involved in this process too. There are many templates and tutorial videos available online. Choose the flowers that your loved one favoured. These can be real or artificial depending on your budget. Many of the things you'll need, such as foam wreath rings and ribbon, can be found online at a low cost.

The Order of Service

As the name suggests, the order of service is a booklet that details the service, allowing people to follow along as it's happening. The order of service can be as long or short as you want. You can print the words of hymns and prayers so that guests can join in. This is your opportunity to make something personal that represents your loved one. For example, if your loved one was a sports fan, why not give it a sports theme? You can put photos in the order of service, along with personal thoughts, poems and memories that mean something to you. You can use publishing software on your computer to design the order from scratch, then get it printed in a print shop. If you don't feel confident about tackling the design yourself, use one of the plethora of free templates available online.

The Wake

A wake is something that can end up being very expensive, but it doesn't have to be. Holding a wake at home is a good way to save money. Friends and family often want to rally around and help during these times. Ask everyone to make and bring a plate of food instead of hiring caterers. For a more personal touch, consider serving your loved one's favourite food and beverages as a celebration of their life. If your home is not big enough for all the guests, try approaching a local pub and ask if they'd mind you bringing some food in. Explain that people will be spending a lot of money and they may even throw in a few plates of sandwiches themselves.

For more information and tips, talk with the funeral directors in your area.