Why Plan Ahead?
No one likes to think about death, let alone plan for it. In many families, discussing one's mortality is an extremely uncomfortable topic. But it is a topic that should be discussed and planned well in advance of your death. By pre-planning your funeral, you relieve your family of having to make important financial decisions during a period of great stress and grief. This ia a time when people aren't thinking very clearly and may not know what to do because you never made your wishes known. It's easy to say, "Don't make a fuss. I don't want a ceremony. Just bury me and be done with it." But it is important to realize that the ritual of a funeral and/or memorial service isn't for the deceased but for the living. It is a time when friends and family can gather together to grieve openly and to provide support for one another.
Help take the burden off your loved ones by making your end-of-life
decisions in advance, in a calm and thoughtful atmosphere.
Contact us to schedule a meeting
with our funeral planners 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at 336-475-1945
By pre-planning your funeral, you can:
Make all the arrangements during a time of peace and not leave them to your family during their time of grief
Make your wishes known
Control the cost of your funeral and protect from inflation
Ensure that personal records are organized and easy for your survivors to locate
Protect your insurance so that it provides for your survivors and not for funeral expenses
Provide protection in case the need arises before it is expected
DRAW A WILL
Regardless of how much or how little wealth you have, it's important to have a will to eliminate the state from taking over after you die. Have a lawyer draw one up (the fee depends on how complicated the will is). Organize all the papers and important documents you'll need to take with you to the lawyer. Your will is an inventory of all that you own-real estate, bank accounts, stocks and bonds (if any), annuities, and life insurance. List your personal property such as jewelry, paintings, and collectibles and specify who gets what. Maybe that special collection of coins to a favorite nephew, the heirloom jewelry to a sister, a bequest to your favorite charity. Whatever, be clear about the distribution of your assets. But don't forget to list your liabilities-mortgage, loans, credit cards. You have covered everything. Short and sweet. Whatever you do, don't forget to sign the will and have it witnessed by two people with their correct addresses included (should they be summoned by the court) and keep it where survivors will find it. You will need to designate an executor to administer your will after you die. And if drawn by a lawyer, the original copy of the will is filed at his or her office and a duplicate copy held in a safe deposit or your desk. (Whatever is in the will is not gospel until, as they say, the bell finally tolls. You can make changes.)
PLAN THE ACTUAL FUNERAL
Many factors go into the planning the funeral. From choice of casket to type of ceremony to be perfomed. You must also decide on body disposition. Burial or cremation? If earth burial, a cemetery plot should be purchased; if above ground, a mausoleum crypt. If cremation is the choice, plan disposition of the ashes. Do you want them stored in a columbarium niche or buried? Maybe you prefer to have your ashes scattered? Another option some people take is to donate organs and tissues to a medical school. (Have a donor card and check on requirements.)
DECIDE THE TYPE OF CEREMONY
You may want a traditional funeral service with visitation and a member of the clergy conducting services at a church or our funeral home. Would you want an open or closed casket? Maybe you want a special friend to do the eulogy or family members to read scripture passages or poetry. Any favorite hymns?
If you would rather have a memorial service, express that wish. That means a service in a church or at our funeral home where the body is not present. A common misconception is that when the body is cremated you don't hold a funeral. You can hold a funeral before cremation.
TALLY THE TOTAL COST
Tally the total cost of the funeral, which will probably be considerable, and decide about prepaying with bank savings, trusts, life insurance, or annuities. Now, congratulate yourself for facing up to the inevitable and planning these details ahead. It will allow your family to "focus on grieving and recovery."