Planning your funeral—let alone thinking about it—is not something many of us want to worry about. However, there are a number of reasons to preplan.
Preplanning is when you arrange a funeral or memorial service prior to one’s passing. Though somewhat difficult to consider at first, making final arrangements beforehand helps:
- Relieve some of the stress family members feel making arrangements during an emotional time.
- Ensure final wishes are met.
- Alleviate some of the sudden financial burden of funeral costs on your family.
While preplanning is the first step to alleviating the emotional and financial burden of surviving family, it’s part of a larger memorialization plan.
Below, we discuss memorial or headstone preplanning, and why you should consider it as you prearrange final wishes.
Why Funeral and Headstone or Memorial Preplanning Go Hand in Hand
Although funeral preplanning and headstone preplanning are two separate processes, families can benefit from making final arrangements for both.
When you preplan for a funeral, you make arrangements for the service that happens right after one’s passing. The service typically happens within a week or so of the passing and is an important step in the grieving process, creating a space to express those feelings and start the process towards acceptance.
Likewise, headstone or memorial preplanning offers similar benefits. Though less timely than the service, a headstone or memorial creates a lasting tribute for surviving family members to visit for generations. The headstone serves as a physical gathering place for all to visit and remember the loved one.
What Does It Mean to Preplan a Memorial?
When you preplan a memorial or headstone, you’re making final arrangements for the grave marker prior to one’s passing. This includes making decisions regarding the:
- Location of the cemetery.
- Memorial’s size and shape.
- Quality and type of granite or bronze used.
- Words and images etched into stone.
Memorial preplanning allows you to document your final wishes regarding your headstone, while involving all close family and loved ones in the decisions.
Why Should You Preplan Your Memorial?
Families are sometimes unsure where or what their loved one would have preferred as a final resting place. Memorial preplanning helps prevent these important questions from going unanswered, including:
- Do you want to have a traditional burial in a cemetery?
- Do you want to be cremated and memorialized in another location other than the cemetery?
- What type of headstone would you prefer?
- What designs, epitaphs or lettering would you like on the memorial?
Memorial preplanning also helps alleviate some of the financial stress because it allows you to prefund your headstone and lock in today’s prices. By making decisions now, your family benefits financially and emotionally later on.
Interested in Preplanning a Memorial?
Preplanning ensures final wishes are met and relieves some of the burden families feel after the loss of a loved one.
If you’re interested in preplanning a memorial, but aren’t sure where to start, download our Memorial Cost Guide.
It will help you navigate conversations with memorial specialists, so you can better understand the process and recognize value.