Funeral Planning: A Full Checklist

Funeral planning. Learn more about what you'll need, in today's article.

Even if you've had a lot of time to prepare for it, a funeral can seem like an impossibly sudden thing to have to get ready for. Most of us will only need to arrange one, maybe two of them in our lifetimes if we're (strange as it is to say) lucky. 

With all of the shock, grief and unexpected chaos that a death in the family can cause, squaring away the admin of a funeral can seem like a lot. Which is why we've brought you our official funeral planning checklist, to help you navigate this difficult process.


First, you're going to want to make arrangements with the funeral home. They may have been paid in advance by your loved one, but these are all answers you'll have to go out and get. If there are no arrangements made yet, call ahead to your local home and find out about their prices. Request a breakdown of their products and services and use that information to get a package that works with your budget.


You need to know what your budget is before you can responsibly arrange a funeral. Also, you'll want a clear understanding of who is paying for the funeral itself. Maybe the cost of the funeral comes out of the deceased's estate, but you'll need to know how to actually access those funds. 

Remember: a funeral doesn't have to be expensive for it to be special to you and your family. A direct cremation often won't include a service, with the remains being delivered to the family later on. This helps to keep costs down if that is a factor. And a memorial can also happen later at any time.

Burial or Cremation?

If buried, will the deceased be placed in a mausoleum or a grave? Have you purchased a plot? A tombstone? What should the inscription be? Bronze and granite are some of the most popular materials for their durability, but it's up to you to choose. For cremation, what would you like to do with the ashes? There are a lot of options out there, and it might sound obvious, but you'll have to choose based on your needs.


Something many people forget they'll need to plan for with a funeral is the outfit the deceased will be buried or cremated in. It's an actual factor, and cremation will also require the clothing to meet certain requirements. Call ahead and speak with the funeral director for more clarity. Your loved one may also want special or sentimental items buried with them, so make sure to find out.

The Service

Do you know what kind of service your loved one wanted to have? Funeral services take place before a burial or cremation. Some people prefer to have a service next to the grave. Memorials, meanwhile, occur once the person has already been buried or cremated.

Did your loved one want a specific sort of religious services? Did they have specific beliefs you'd like to honor? Maybe having a particular religious representative would have meant something to them. Similarly, if the deceased was a veteran, military honors might be appropriate, perhaps folding and presenting the American flag or playing "Taps." Your funeral director has the knowledge and experience you need to plan this out.

Funeral Planning: Come Prepared

From the pallbearers to donations to charities in your loved one's name, there's a lot to consider during your funeral planning process. Book an upcoming funeral, today, with Ormond's leading funeral home, Woodward Cremation & Funeral Services.

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