Funerals need not be as expensive as many of us have been led to believe. The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) surveyed the average cost of a funeral at $7,181 in 2014, and this is without any cemetery fees included. Adding in cemetery plot fees brings the average cost to $8,508.
For many families today spending close to $9,000 on funeral expenses is not always affordable. Therefore, if you need to arrange a more affordable cremation service in Scranton, this guide should help you understand how to save on your funeral expenses.
The cost of a funeral can vary quite significantly. This will depend upon the type of funeral service you opt for and the funeral service provider you select.
If you do any research with local funeral homes you will discover that the price for a funeral package will vary from different providers, even for the exact same services! Whilst the NFDA can quote the average cost of a funeral at $7,181, it is possible to arrange a funeral for considerably less than this.
The average cost of a traditional funeral in Scranton is $6,306* with the lowest price coming in at $5,510.
How much does it cost to be cremated in Scranton?
Cremation service prices in Scranton range from $1,295 to $3,316*, again depending on the type of cremation service chosen. A full-service cremation costs more than a simple direct cremation. A simple, direct cremation package price of $1,295 is offered by DFS Memorials.
We have included in a direct cremation cost comparison below to give you an idea of comparable costs from several cremation service providers in Scranton.
How do I select a funeral services provider?
If you have no prior experience with a funeral services provider this can seem an overwhelming task. Consult with friends and associates and seek recommendations. If you are using the Internet to research funeral services and prices in Scranton, be sure to check the ownership of who you are dealing with. Some funeral companies have set up online budget cremation businesses, and some corporate groups also trade as low-cost cremation companies. If you are in doubt, ask if they are independently-owned. DFS Memorials only work with a reputable, licensed and independently-owned funeral home.
How can I save money when arranging a funeral or cremation?
These days many of us are concerned about having the necessary funds to conduct funeral services for a loved one if no provision was made. Let’s face it…not many folks can just produce thousands of dollars at the drop of a hat! There are ways that you can ensure you keep your funeral expenses to a minimum.
Generally a cremation will work out less expensive than a burial, namely as no immediate cemetery fees are required for a cremation. However, a dignified burial can be achieved at a very affordable cost. DFS Memorials traditional burial packages start at $3,995.
Opting for cremation means that there is no need for a casket, burial vault or cemetery plot. And eliminating these costs alone can save you several thousand dollars.
Comparing cremation prices in Scranton
We have compiled some pricing information for basic direct cremation services from a select number of affordable cremation service providers in the area. This hopefully can give you some idea of how direct cremation costs compare.
Disclaimer: This cremation cost information was obtained from providers in August 2017. Prices are posted to help families make informed decisions. However, periodically providers change their prices. We make every effort to ensure the prices are accurate, but prices must be verified directly with the listed funeral home.
What is ‘direct cremation’?
A direct cremation is where the deceased is cremated but no services or ceremony is held. Minimal services are offered by the funeral director to collect the deceased, prepare the body for cremation, and process all the required paperwork. The deceased is cremated in a simple cremation container and the remains are made available for the family to collect or have delivered to them. No funeral home visit is required for a direct cremation service. In many cases the funeral director will visit you at home to sign the paperwork and consult with you about arrangements.
Direct cremation is becoming very popular as a way in which the funeral home can assist in the immediate disposition of the deceased for an affordable fee, but leaves the family with the opportunity to conduct their own memorial ceremony once they have the cremated remains back.
How do I know I am getting the remains of my loved one back?
This is one question that a lot of families ask. There are strict laws governing how human cremation is conducted. Operatives are trained in the processes and only one body can be cremated in a retort at any one time. The retort chamber is then fully cleared before another cremation proceeds. A body is tagged the minute it is logged into the funeral home or crematory and ID checks are done at each step of the process.
What can I do with the cremated remains?
You can inter cremated remains into a grave plot or niche at a cemetery, keep a cremation urn at home, or scatter the remains in a place of your choosing. Today there are many options for how we can memorialize a lost loved one and there are now a range of cremation artifacts that can be created to help us immortalize the memory of a loved one, from bird baths made with concrete infused with cremation ashes to memorial diamonds! Other folks are choosing to scatter ashes in a memorable place for a loved one’s last resting place. Read this section on Ash Scattering for more ideas.
What if the deceased is at the Medical Examiners?
If the deceased is at the Medical Examiner’s office, you need to appoint a funeral director to arrange the release of the body into their care. Only a licensed funeral director can collect a body from the county morgue.
What if the deceased had no life insurance?
More often these days family members are passing and we find out that they had no life insurance or funeral plan. This can mean surviving family are burdened with a funeral bill that they cannot afford to pay. There is very little financial support to assist families in this situation, and it varies significantly by state and county. We would suggest you contact Lackawanna County Assistance Program at:
200 Scranton State Office Building
100 Lackawanna Avenue
Scranton, PA 18503 Phone: (570) 963-4525
There is also a $255 lump-sum social security death benefit payment for those that qualify. Your funeral director will assist you in claiming this.
We hope this short guide has answered some of your questions about how to save on funeral costs and will help you arrange a simple cremation at an affordable price. If you have any further questions about arranging a cremation in Scranton, please call your DFS Memorials provider on (570) 225-9080.
*Prices obtained from online funeral price survey website 2017 [Parting]