Funeral costs are a concern for many families today. Not only can many of us not afford an elaborate and expensive funeral, but more people are deciding that they want something more simple and affordable. It can seem overwhelming trying to work out exactly what a funeral will cost in Los Angeles, and work out your options, especially if you have just lost a loved one. So we have put together this guide to help you understand funeral costs in Los Angeles and, more importantly, how to save money arranging a funeral or cremation.
This is a question that funeral directors often seem to sidestep answering! Instead, they like to regale you with stories of how many generations they have been in business, or how excellent they are at providing ‘special’ ceremonies. I have no doubt that this is true BUT this still does not always justify their pricing. If a funeral director cannot simply answer a question about price…it should ring alarm bells!
The average cost of a funeral is $7,640 (according to the National Association of Funeral Directors 2019), and this does not include any cemetery costs. So a traditional funeral is likely to cost you somewhere in the region of $6,000 to $10,000. Today when 64% of families are now living paycheck to paycheck (CNBC March 2022), it is hardly surprising that paying out this amount for a funeral can seem insurmountable.
So how can you save money by arranging a cremation?
A cremation is likely to save you at least half the cost of a traditional burial funeral. You immediately save on some of the largest outlays associated with a funeral. With cremation, there is no need for a casket, embalming, a burial vault, cemetery plot, or full-size grave marker. Eliminating these funeral merchandise items alone can save you a few thousand dollars! Another way that cremation can save money is that it is possible to hold a memorial service (with the cremated remains present) without having to go ahead with a funeral ceremony immediately. This can allow families time to make decisions. Often this can mean that money-saving options can be more thoroughly explored. Some families even choose to conduct their own memorial service, which can save on venue and staff costs, plus it also makes a service so much more personalized.
What is the average cost of a cremation in Los Angeles?
It is important to understand that cremation prices do differ quite considerably between different funeral homes in Los Angeles. For this reason, an ‘average’ cremation cost has to be put into the perspective of what kind of cremation services are being assessed. The average cost of a cremation is $2,250 [CANA] for a cremation with a ceremony and a mid-range urn. However, cheaper cremation options are available as outlined below, and you can arrange a cremation in Los Angeles for as little as $750 complete.
Choosing a Cremation Package
A funeral home must have a general price list (GPL) outlining their service charges but many funeral homes also offer cremation packages, where a price is offered for a complete cremation service. In comparing costs and services between funeral homes, it is important to ensure you are comparing like-for-like services, especially when it is a quoted cremation package price.
Not all cremation providers quote a fully inclusive price when quoting a cremation package. There are generally 3 main types of cremation options – a direct cremation (a basic minimal cremation), a cremation with a funeral service, or a cremation with a memorial service. The difference is that with a direct cremation there is NO service or ceremony conducted by the funeral provider, although you can conduct your own memorial services afterward. A cremation with a funeral service is generally where the deceased is present and the cremation is conducted after the service. A cremation with a memorial service is where the cremation is conducted first and a memorial service is held with the cremation urn present.
Arranging a direct cremation in Los Angeles
A direct cremation is the least expensive cremation option. It is sometimes referred to as simple or basic cremation or called an immediate cremation. It means that just a basic disposition service is offered. The deceased is collected, prepared for cremation, all the necessary documentation completed, the cremation process goes ahead, and then the cremated remains are returned to the family (generally in a temporary urn).
How do I choose a cremation provider in Los Angeles?
Choosing a cremation provider can depend upon what kind of cremation services you require. If you are looking for a cremation with a ceremony or interment committal, then you will need a funeral home that offers the facilities for a ceremony and that is in a good location for your family.
If you have decided upon a simple direct cremation at the most affordable price, then you may consider the services of a provider who specifically offers a direct cremation at a low cost. The locale of the funeral home is not as essential if no services are being held. And many funeral homes have extended their service area for direct cremation services.
The DFS Memorials provider for Los Angeles is an established funeral home with facilities for ceremonies. DFS Memorials offers families a low-cost alternative in Los Angeles.
DFS Memorials LOS ANGELES (323) 798-9055 Call with any questions you may have
Direct Cremation $750 complete – – Immediate Burial $1,250
How do cremation providers compare in Los Angeles
It is always wise to shop around and compare services and costs. We do it in any other large purchase we make – so why not when purchasing end-of-life services? You will no doubt be surprised by how much the cost of funeral services can vary between funeral homes in Los Angeles. At DFS Memorials we conducted research to find the best cremation prices in Los Angeles to save you the task of phoning round to compare prices. This way we can save you the hassle when you are emotionally fragile.
Visit our comprehensive Guide to Cremation Costs and Services in California for further reading on cremation near you.
What if the deceased had no life insurance? Is there any help with cremation costs in Los Angeles?
An individual passing without any insurance and surviving family struggling to meet funeral costs is becoming a more regular occurrence. Public aid can be a little patchy depending upon where you are but you can consult your local county human services or social services to find out if there is any financial assistance near you. The state will meet indigent burials for those that become the responsibility of the State but there are general eligibility requirements for any state funding for funeral expenses.
There is also the $255 Social Security lump-sum death benefit for those that qualify, and various union, faith, and charitable organizations may offer some support to families to assist with covering funeral costs.
DFS Memorials Los Angeles serves families throughout the Greater Los Angeles area and including Los Angeles County, Orange County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, and Ventura County.