By ROB JONAS
Planning a funeral can be very stressful on a family, especially when they start considering the cost for one.
Unless the funeral was prepaid, families have to find the financial resources to cover the cost. Fortunately, there are several resources families can tap into when they need to pay for a funeral, said Meyers Funeral Home director Stephen Meyers.
“Many counties offer benefits to help people afford funerals,” said Meyers. “If a person passes in VA [Veterans Administration] care, the VA offers to cover most of the cost of the funeral. Some credit cards have an allotment of $1,000 or $500 to help cover the cost. There are pensions and insurance policies that people can tap into.”
In all cases, said Meyers, it’s up to the families to look for these benefits.
1.“If you’re entitled to a benefit, they won’t come to you. You have to go to them,” said Meyers. Another tip Meyers suggested families should do is calling several funeral homes to find out how much a funeral will cost.
2. “The biggest fear is not knowing the cost,” said Meyers. “I suggest people call around. In fact, I encourage them to call around and then call me.”
3. In talking with funeral directors, Meyers said families should discuss all of the associated costs of the funeral before making their decision. There could be fees that show up on the final bill that were not discussed during the meeting.
“A lot of national chains have come into the area, and I have heard some horror stories about people who were charged more than they expected,” said Meyers.
Meyers said he works with every family and every budget to ensure that their loved ones receive the funeral they deserve at a price that families can afford. And, he will recommend resources for financial aid that families might not have thought of.
“There’s a lot of benefits out there … we can accept as payment for a funeral,” said Meyers.