It’s very expensive to pass away these days, and families may have nowhere to turn to.
With prices at cemeteries and crematoria rising as much as 50 percent over the last 12 months, families are shelling out thousands of dollars in funeral costs, says a new report from AOL UK.
Over the last 10 years, the cost of the average funeral has skyrocketed by 80 percent to an average of $5,000. It can set you back about $1,200 for a cremation, while it can cost you more than $4,000 to be buried.
As households struggle with a rising cost of living, stagnant wages and increasing debt loads, many families are having a difficult time paying for a funeral. Since a large number of municipalities have sold off their crematoria, private companies have filled the void and have carried out funerals for customers. Councils have been forced to relinquish control of these properties as the federal government tries to repair the country’s finances.
But consumers and public officials say private firms have been charging exponential rates and have taken advantage of impoverished families.
Due to these rising costs, many consumers have turned to payday loans to help cover the costs. In fact, according to research from the British Seniors Insurance Agency, approximately one-quarter of households are forced to borrow the funds from payday loan establishments to pay for funerals.
To ensure that funerals are more affordable for families and to help them avoid using a payday loan establishment, the Work and Pensions Committee is urging the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to determine if prices listed by funeral companies are fair and competitive.
What’s causing many to be concerned is the fact that Co-Operative Group and Dignity control about one-third of the funeral market. And they’re witness growing funeral sales – Co-Operative Group reported a 10 percent spike in sales, but they have also promised to reduce prices by seven percent.
Nevertheless, Members of Parliament and non-profit organizations are demanding that the government establish a fixed price for a very standard funeral. In order to achieve this, proponents say, public officials have to collaborate with the funeral industry.
Great Britain isn’t the only part of the world that is seeing funeral costs skyrocket. And as households elsewhere struggle, they may also turn to various payday loan outfits, both online and in-person.
In the United States, the average funeral costs customers between $7,000 and $10,000, as of 2015. These prices consist of funeral home services, burial in the cemetery and the installation of a headstone. In Canada, that number slightly dips to around $4,000, plus another $2,000 for the casket.
Officials say that when someone in the family dies then everyone tries to take advantage of you.
“When there is a death in the family, all sorts of people put their hands in your pockets and try to take advantage,” said Mark Garnier, a Conservative member of the Treasury Committee. “When you have suffered a bereavement, your ability to fight your corner is massively reduced, giving the provider a big advantage.”
Simply put: it’s better to plan for today then be stuck with an enormous bill afterwards.