What Are The Different Ways To Pre-plan For Your Own Funeral?

It may sounds funny to some people that a funeral can be pre-planned, but you may not know, pre-planned funerals are getting more common nowadays as it is considered one of the best gifts you can give to your loved ones after you pass away. Such planning saves the headaches for your loved ones to experience the process of planning a funeral for you. It is during that time that a lot of difficult decisions need to be made during a small time frame after your death and you are the best person to do so, since this funeral is meant for you.

There are many ways to pre-plan a funeral but in this article, we are going to share with you a few most discussed and common ways to do it right.

First method is to do it in writing (or we called it a written pre-planned funeral or Family Record Guide) and usually this is solely documented by you with majority of the details in writing. It is the most basic form and though it is simple, it is still sufficient to cover quite a fair bit of your final plans and preferences which can be helpful for your loved ones in time of need.

Second method is what we called a pre-need plan. It is a more complete form and involves prepayment of all funeral expenses. It is usually regarded as an “all-regarded” end of life plan because it allows you to plan all your funeral needs and at the same time, purchase a funeral insurance policy to cover all the finance costs involved.

The last method is similar to pre-need plan but is even better which is known as a final expense plan. It works exactly the same as pre-need plan, except that instead of just covering the total costs involved in the funeral, it also provides additional monies that can be used to cover other expenses such as settling any outstanding loan or income taxes etc.

What method you choose to pre-plan your funeral you have to ensure that you must be very comfortable with it. Of course a final expense plan will be the best but it costs more hence you need to see if you are financially capable of buying such a policy in the first place. Make sure that you meet your needs but also within your own limits.

What Are The Different Cemetery Options You Can Have?

It is grieving when our loved ones pass away and as their closed ones, we would hope that they do so happily and peacefully. Most people do not choose the cemetery option for themselves hence likely if you are reading this article, you have at the situation where you need to decide how you are going to handle it for your loved ones. There are many options available out there and you need to decide which is more suitable for him or her.

First, you need to decide whether you wish to go for cremation or standard burial. While the latter allows you to continue to visit your loved ones after the burial, the former will still allow you to do so.

If you decide to go for standard burial, you can consider normal burial, natural burial (or green burial). Natural burial involves burying the body naturally into the soil so that it will recycle itself and will not decompose.

If you decide to go for cremation, you can consider scattering the ashes into the sea or area which is memorable and meaningful to your loved ones. However, not everyone is favourable of this idea as it means the ashes of your loved one will be gone for good. You may be left with nothing so you can’t visit him/her next time as and when you wish. Unless this is the last wishes that come from your loved one before he or she passes away, otherwise we do not recommend this idea. Another option after cremation is to keep the ashes in a cremation urn in a cemetery so that you can visit him or her later. You may also say prayers, or leave flowers next time whenever you feel like doing so.

When making such decision, you have to consider the personal wishes of your departed loved ones and at the same time, your own needs and feelings too. In most cases, you will need to give a careful thought about how your decision can affect your and your family too. There may not be a best decision made, but after all, you can have a clear conscious that you have done your best. You will continue to lead your life with a piece of mind. Your departed one; will continue to stay in your heart, forever, and ever. You shall always feel connected to him or her, no matter what has happened.

How To Select The Right Cemetery Plot?

In the olden days, people will not bother to plan for their final resting place but rather let their immediate family members to do it for them. However, in today modern days, people have changed their mentality by doing it ahead of time or when they are still alive. There are various reasons for this but the common reason is because they do not wish their loved ones to make the difficult decision on such an important issue. Some would like to cut costs too.

Choose a cemetery plot is indeed a great decision to be made. The approach you used should be the same as the one you used to handle any major decision in your life. Always remember to do all your homework well i.e. research and more research, background check and price comparison. Always spend enough time to plan ahead so that you will not be caught in a difficult position.

To begin with your approach to select the final resting place for your departed loved one; you should first of all consider the location. Where do you want to bury him/her? Is it near or a distance away from your home? Or any area you think is convenient so that it will be easier for you to make your way there in future? Do not just decide on the region or town, but specific cemetery you are looking at.

Once you have shortlisted a few ideal cemetery plots, start doing research on these cemeteries by checking out their businesses and backgrounds. The number of years they have been in the business, investigating their status with Better Business Bureau. Apart from doing your homework online, you should spend time visiting the place and walk around the premises to check out their environments. See if they have maintained their grounds well i.e. do they clean the gravestones and trim the grasses well and regularly? Is the area clean and do they throw the trashes or just leaving them lying around? All these are the details they you have to observe before you make a decision whether you would like to go with them.

Next, decide whether you wish to go for the traditional burial or green burial. A green burial is usually more environmental friendly and simple as compared to the traditional one. Some cemeteries offer both types while others offer either one of them but not both.

Lastly, once you have narrowed down your choices to probably only one or two. You should probably then consider your budget and see which one fit your budget well. If you are really tight on budget, you may like to consider pre-owned plot which is much cheaper as compared to others. A pre-owned plot is fundamentally one that has previously been in use but given up due to relocation of the grave.

Tips to Choose the Right Funeral Urn for Your Loved Ones

When arranging for a funeral, choosing the funeral urn for your departed loved one is one of the essential processes as it shows how much you honor and respect the person. Budget should not be a major factor here though. Most people like to rush into getting one when the cremation process ends without knowing that there is no such a need. The crematory should not rush you into providing one immediately after the cremation process as they can actually put the ashes into a temporary container. You can then take your time to choose the urn you desire and transfer the ashes to it whenever you are convenient. Hence, you are advised to spend some time to look into how to pick the right funeral urn for your loved one. This is because high chance you will come across a large selection of options available.

To simplify the process of procurement, we would like to describe in this article, a few important points you should take note when selecting your urn.

First of all, you need to determine where you are displaying your urn eventually. If you are going to display it at your home, you should opt for those attractive ones, highly decorative yet easy to maintain. If you are going to bury it or display it outdoor; it is recommended that you go for durable ones that are made of marbles or metals as these materials are tough in nature and suitable to build something that can last very long. There are many different types for you to choose from i.e. religious, hobby, infant or even companion urn so you should choose one that is really suitable for yourself. However, if you are going for water burial, then you should opt for urns that are bio-degradable or environmental friendly so that it will not have any undesirable impact on the environment.

Next, you have to think about your budget. Naturally if you have no budget, you can practically get any of them you like. You may even customize one if you prefer. But if you do have a budget, it will also be a blessing for you as your selection can be narrowed down and speed up your decision making. If you are really low on budget, then I suggest you look out for those discounted urns that are usually made of pewter, brass and other natural materials.

Lastly, you need to consider the volume of the urn that you need to store the ashes of your loved ones. The rule of thumb is, for every pound of body weight, you need approximately 1 cubic inch of space. Of course, if you are unsure, try to get the larger one.

Choose the right urn always takes time but for the sake of your loved ones, you should spend more time on it.

Choosing The Right Headstone That May Probably Last For Hundred Of Years

Choosing the right headstone allows it to last for probably hundreds of years; hence it is important for us to pick the right material from the start. We need to know how to choose headstones that will be used for the graves before we go about getting a monument.

What is a headstone and why is it important to have one?

It is usually made of stone and located over the position where the deceased’s casket is buried. Details of the deceased like name, birth date and date of death are often crafted on it to identify the buried person. Without such a marker, it will be pretty tough to differentiate the graves in the cemetery and locate the right one of your loved one. As such, a headstone is also known as a grave marker.

Why is it important to choose the right headstone?

Most people are not aware that it is more than just a grave marker. If you are tasked to buy a headstone yourself, it is crucial for you to learn the important points below to save you the trouble and money for choosing the wrong one.

1. Choose the right material

You need to know that stones for headstones do not belong to only one type. They are many different types of stone and each type comes with a different budget too. However, the most commonly used type for headstone will be marble, sandstone, slate, granite and limestone. To construct one, different types of materials are also used e.g. bronze, wood and iron.

2. Choose the right shape and form

There are usually 2 types of headstone for graves. One type is known as flat headstones where they are laid flat on the ground and it is mostly used. Another type is known as upright headstones where they stand tall on the ground. Some people love to go for upright headstones simply because the latter are easier to identify. Of course, different types of headstone come into different sizes and weight; hence you need to consider the space and weight constraints too.

3. Learn about the restrictions set by the cemetery

Most people are not aware that many cemeteries have restricted the type of headstone we can use. Some cemeteries have most restrictions and some have lesser, however, and the material, size and design regulations are usually the cases. It is essential that you not just listen to your monument companies, but also speak to the person-in-charge of the cemetery yourself to learn about it. If possible, you should pay a personal visit to the cemetery yourself to look out for any limitation.

4. Check out the fees involved

Not every cemetery offers the service of installing the headstone for you. If it does, they would usually charge you a fee and the fees vary from cemetery to cemetery. Try to do price comparison before you come to a decision on which cemetery to go for. Otherwise, the monument company might be able to help you with the installation but do check out the fees involved too. Another thing to take note of is the maintenance fees. Many cemeteries charge you an on-going fee as long as the grave and headstone are located within, hence, you should find out more about it too.

In Summary

You need to know that choosing a headstone is not an easy task and you can’t just let your monument company handling everything without yourself knowing the details. We do not choose one based its material or orientation. There are other details to consider such as the designs and shape forms etc. If you wish to get a headstone that symbolizes love and purity, you can opt for a dove form in white. If your wish to get one that symbolizes innocence, well you choose go for one in lamb form. The headstone you choose for your loved ones will show your love and respect you have for the one whom departed.

Free Newspaper Obituary Sample

Below is a free sample of newspaper obituary which you may use as reference when writing newspaper obituaries. You may also need a free newspaper obituary template to help you too.

Sample Obituary (Not real person)

First Part:

Jason D. Johnson, 63, of San Diego, California, died May 7, 2008, at home surrounded by family and friends.

Note: Other phrases like “went to be with the Lord” or “passed away” might be allowed by the newspaper.

Second Part:

He was born May 8, 1945, in San Diego, California, the son of late Mary and Larry Johnson. He was the oldest of 4 siblings. On June 6, 1975, he married Susan Smith Doe, who survives.

Third Part:

He graduated from University Of California in 1963. He married Susan Smith Doe on July 13, 1975, in WilliamSport.

He served in the U.S. Army as a communication technician in the 1960s. After his discharge, he was employed by Chevron USA as an communications engineer for 29 years, retiring in 1995. He did volunteer work in Caring Choices Volunteer Center in Northern California.

Mr. Johnson was a member of California State Employees Association Retirees’.

Fourth Part:

He is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Sharon and John Smith of Williamsport, Ind.; son and daughter-in-law, Jimmy and Susanna Jackson of Yukon, Okla.; grandchildren, Leslie and Steve Davis of Williamsport, Ind.; brother, Roy Johnson of Auburn, Wash.; and sister, Cecilia Johnson of Seattle.

Mr. Johnson was preceded in death by his wife, Susan; an infant child; and his brother; Roy.

Fifth Part:

A service was held Thursday at FastService Funeral Home in San Diego, California. Burial took place at Woodlawn Cemetery.

This a sample obituary. It is not for a real person and never was printed in any local newspaper.

For all related articles on Free Obituary Samples And Examples, please refer to “Free Obituary Samples And Examples“.

Samples Of Newspaper Obituary

Free Obituary Template For Writing Newspaper Obituaries

Need to write a proper obituary on your local newspaper obituaries for your loved ones? I have drafted out a free simple yet comprehensive template which you can use it as a guide to write your obituary. However, as different newspaper agencies accept different obituary formats and styles, below are only some general guidelines for your reference.

Publishing your obituary with online obituaries is different from newspaper obituaries. Newspaper obituaries are typically more professional and provide more important and accurate information to the public. You may draft your obituary in your own words using any of the following 14 elements.

Basic Obituary Template For Newspaper Obituaries

1. Deceased First Name, Middle Initial and Last Name, offset by commas, follows by Age.

– Do not use the word “aged” before the numerical age. Age can be omitted upon the family’s request.

2. State, City and Zip

– Do not use specific street address for the deceased.

3. Cause Of Death (optional)

4. Place Of Death (optional)

– Though this is optional, it has been a customary practice to mention where the deceased died eg. home, hospital or nursing home.

5. Date Of Death

6. Occupation

– List job function or title, name of company and number of years employed by the company. More than 1 occupation can be listed where applicable.

7. Hobbies or Community Involvement

– List memberships, clubs, volunteer work or any noteworthy accomplishments.

8. Military Services

List the different dates and branches of service as well as number of years served.

9. Marriage

– List spouse name and date of marriage. May like to list spouse’s maiden name and state of origin too.

10. Left Behind / Survivors

– List in the order of names and city reside eg. parents, brothers and sisters, children, grand children, step children, cousins etc.

11. Religious Affiliation

12. Place And Time Of Funeral Service

– Name of funeral home, time of visit and viewing hours (please ensure accuracy)

13. Pallbearers And Honorary Pallbearers

14. Contributions And Other Memorials

This template includes examples with basic punctuation and grammatical rules which are applicable to write a proper obituary to publish on general newspaper obituaries. However, it may not necessarily represent the correct style and glossary of terms definitions where applicable, for publication in your local newspaper obituaries.

Additional Information(s):

1. More Obituary Guides And Templates: More Online Obituary Guides And Templates

2. Download a free Funeral Planning Checklist to keep track of information as you make funeral plans and obituaries.

For all related articles on Free Obituary Guides And Templates, please refer to “Free Obituary Guides And Templates“.

Free Microsoft Office Word Obituary Template

Now you can download a free Microsoft Office Word Obituary Template (Funeral Planning Checklist)

Purpose: This Word version obituary template is a Funeral Planning Checklist to keep track of information as you make funeral plans and obituaries.

Requirements: Microsoft Office Word Version 97 or later

Download Size: 77KB

Total Downloads: 54,661

Ratings: 4 out of 5 stars (363 votes)

Additional: To download and use the template, you need to have at least Microsoft Office Word 97 and Microsoft Office Online ActiveX installed.

If you are interested to get Free Obituary Templates for writing, you may like to read my previous article “Get Your Free Obituary Templates And Guides Here“.

For all related articles on Free Obituary Guides And Templates, please refer to “Free Obituary Guides And Templates“.

Get Your Free Obituary Templates And Guides Here

Get Your Free Obituary Templates And Guides In This Article.

1. Basic Obituary Information Gathering

You need to collect a list of names that you would like to include into the Obituary. Make sure that all information are accurate OR to the best of your knowledge especially key dates and correct spelling of names. This is VERY IMPORTANT!

2. Basic Obituary Template

1. Full Name (Deceased) including nickname as well as maiden name.

2. Date Of Birth.

3. Marital Status

4. Whom They Leave Behind To Mourn eg. Spouse, Parent(s), Children, Married Children & Their Spouse, Sibling(s), Niece(s), Nephew(s) or Close Friend(s) etc.

5. Date They Passed Away.

6. Place Of Death (optional).

7. Cause Of Death (optional).

8. Who May Have Passed Away Before Them eg. Mother, Father, Sibling(s), Spouse, Children

Place Of Death and Cause Of Death can be optional. A good example of a simple obituary can be found here.

3. Free Templates For Newspaper Obituaries

– Style and Usage guide from The Denver Post and Rock Mountain News Classified.

4. Other Free Obituary Templates Online (Hope They Can Be Usedful)




If you are reading this article or looking for a sample obituary template, likelihood is one of your close ones has passed away. I offer my condolences to you.

If you interested to know what are memorial obituaries, you may like to read my previous article on “What Are Memorial Obituaries“.

For all related articles on Memorial Obituaries Guides And Templates, please refer to “Free Obituaries Guides And Templates

What Are Memorial Obituaries?

Memorial Obituaries are also known as Obituaries in short. Obituaries are mini biographies that form a memorial tribute to someone’s life. They contain important information for the family, friends and relatives, such as time and place of the funeral service.

Memorial Obituaries should be distinguished from “death notices”. A death notice is simply a paid advertisement written by the family members and placed in the local newspaper either by the family members or the funeral home.

However, as time passes by, a Memorial Obituary Notice has been regarded as a Funeral Notice.

I will elaborate more on how to write a proper Memorial Obituary Notice in my next Online Memorial Obituaries Guide post.

If you love to read more similar explanations on Memorial Obituaries, you may like to refer to my “Free Obituary Explanations And Tips“.

What Are Memorial Obituaries