How has the recession affected funeral planning?

Much as the media may try and tell us that the recession is over and we are now in “recovery”, the reality is that many Americans are far from recovery.  In fact the recent economic downtown has left hundreds of thousands struggling now more than ever.

As a nation we are carrying debt of a gargantuan size, as of September 2012, the public debt stands at $11.27 trillion. Yes, folks, TRILLION and if you want to have some idea of just how gargantuan $11.27 trillion is – view this slideshow demonstration.

What does a trillion dollars look like?

This U.S. debt equates to $44,900 per person, or $91,500 per working person in the U.S.    The debt that the Government, and every ordinary American,  is carrying is still crippling.    And I think many of us understand the expression these days of to “rob Peter to pay Paul”, and the art of credit card juggling.

The U.K recently reported that people are turning to credit cards and bank loans in an effort to meet funeral expenses, with funeral costs that have escalated 71% since 2004.  The truth, whether we want to accept it nor not, is that financial hardship and changing attitudes mean that we are changing our death care choices.   Although we have always had reservations about preneed funeral plans, especially as there are horror stories (even this week in the press) of trust funds being poorly invested and falling short on their returns.  Today, we can see some apparent value in securing funds in a ‘safe’ funeral policy.   The problem with our still unstable economy – is what really IS safe? Our senior population is booming, but twilight years can now be spent in investing life-savings in senior and health care, leaving little left for a dignified send-off.

Those families that can afford to walk into a funeral home with a blank check are few and far between.  Those funeral homes that earn a reputation for adhering to up-selling will come unstuck.   What people want today is clear and visible pricing for funerals – simplicity and affordability.  And this is what DFS Memorials represents.

We deplore funeral home websites that spew content about their centuries of legacy and extended staff profiles of third and fourth generation funeral directors.  Do they really think that this is what people today want to read?  Do we really read extensively these days?  People want to know they are dealing with real people and are going to get a realistic price quote. We admire the websites that are simple, to-the-point, and display prices in an easy-to-find and concise way. Transparency – clearly say who they are, what they offer and how much.   Many funeral and cremation providers that understand the change in process, now clearly offer a range of simple packages.

DFS Memorials selects local, family-owned and operated funeral businesses for the network, funeral business that deliver a quality service at a low price to their immediate community.  Helping to address the need for transparency.  Signposting people who desire affordable funeral options to their nearest local provider – clearly displaying what is the basic price they can expect to pay for a direct cremation.

There are NO corporate funeral businesses in the DFS Memorials network – only Mom & Pop funeral homes.  All members who join the network must have a physical location central to the area they serve, and be licensed.  No “man-in-a-van” operations jumping on the direct cremation bandwagon.

              Put simply we believe in the local and sustainability.                                                We aim to help you find the best value cremation services working within your community.

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