Funer­als: Vita Palestrant

Hid­den costs mean griev­ing fam­i­lies can be ripped off when or­gan­is­ing a fu­neral

Money Magazine Australia - - CONTENTS - STORY VITA PALESTRANT

With­out mean­ing to sound ghoul­ish, there’s good news on the fu­neral front. A num­ber of re­ports and com­par­i­son web­sites have re­cently emerged to lift the lid on the in­dus­try and help con­sumers nav­i­gate this costly and complex world.

It’s a wel­come de­vel­op­ment given that funer­als are of­ten or­gan­ised when be­reaved fam­ily mem­bers are still reel­ing from their loss, un­sure of what to do and un­der pres­sure to have the body re­moved for burial or cre­ma­tion as soon as pos­si­ble.

For too long opaque pric­ing has made it dif­fi­cult for con­sumers to shop around. Of­ten the only way to get to grips with the true cost of a fu­neral is face to face with the fu­neral di­rec­tor, by which time the ex­hausted fam­ily finds it’s eas­i­est to just ac­cept what’s on of­fer.

Con­sumer groups such as Choice want fu­neral homes to itemise their pric­ing on their web­sites so that con­sumers can re­search their op­tions and com­pare prices be­fore­hand and make an in­formed de­ci­sion. This way they can avoid be­ing lum­bered with a hefty fi­nan­cial bur­den.

Funer­als come with a sig­nif­i­cant price tag. A cre­ma­tion

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