Cash advance items are goods and services that the funeral home can coordinate for you, but they do not actually offer the service themselves. For example, the funeral home can arrange for flowers and use the money you provide them to pay the florist for their services, but in most cases, the funeral home itself does not provide the flowers. By planning ahead, you can set aside an estimated amount for these third-party services, but the price may increase if the third-party vendor makes changes to their pricing.
Below are the most common cash advance items and what to expect:
- Death Certificates
Most people don’t realize how many death certificates they will need. It’s best to purchase multiple copies – more than you think you will need.
- Cemetery and Monument Charges
Whether you choose burial or cremation, you will likely need to consider cemetery costs in your plans. Many funeral homes do not own cemetery space or a monument company, so these fees are decided by the cemetery or monument company.
- Obituary/Death Notice
Many are surprised at the cost of publishing an obituary or death notice in a newspaper, especially in a larger city. The funeral home will often publish an obituary on their website, but if you wish to post it elsewhere, the fee may be higher than you expect.
Depending on the time of year, the cost of flowers can fluctuate. Unfortunately, this means that it’s difficult to determine an actual cost. The funeral home is not likely to have its own florist, but they can purchase floral arrangements for you.
- Police Escort
It’s common for police to escort the funeral procession from the funeral home to the final resting place. The cost associated with this service is determined by local rates.
While not all-inclusive, this list shares a few funeral costs that most people don’t usually consider. Look into current costs or talk to a funeral director or advance planning specialist to determine an accurate amount based on local rates.