Considering a funeral plan?
With the ever-increasing numbers of people deciding to plan and prepare for their futures by purchasing a funeral plan this has seen the increase in companies wishing to enter the market. Many people rightly choose to speak with their funeral director of choice but some are persuaded to buy by cold-callers or from an advertisement in a newspaper. So how do we know who you should buy from and what you should be considering?
- Where should I purchase a funeral plan – we passionately recommend that you do not purchase a funeral plan from a cold caller or in response to an advert or flyer from an unknown company. Many funeral plan providers use cold calling to sell funeral plans. Many offer what seem like cheaper prices and say that you can choose the funeral director of your choice. In many cases these funeral plan providers have no arrangements to any funeral director and once they speak with a company they will not accept the funeral plan because it is either at a cost they cannot conduct the funeral at; or they do not have confidence or trust in the company that sold the funeral plan. – Nicholas O’Hara only work with Golden Charter, the largest independent funeral planning company in the UK and supported by around 1,000 independent funeral directors. With the funeral plan you purchase through us we guarantee to carry out the funeral with no further funeral directors expenses unless additions wish to be added at the time of need.
- Speak to the funeral director of your choice – If you haven’t decided upon this then perhaps research them and look at their websites, look at what services they offer; are they members of a recognised trade association; who owns the business (many are not owned by the name above the door but large conglomerates); are there independent reviews about the business left by previous families; are the prices of the services they offer available? – Nicholas O’Hara are owned and managed by the O’Hara family for over 45 years and have no outside owners or shareholders. Our website offers a list of the funeral plans we offer and reviews that are independently gathered by Funeral Guide from families we have had the privilege to care for. We are members of the Society of Allied and Independent Funeral Directors (SAIF)
- Which funeral plan provider – The biggest reason to then speak to the funeral director of choice is they will offer a funeral plan that they wish to be associated with and have confidence in. I would though stress to make sure that this is a funeral plan that is registered with the Funeral Planning Authority (FPA) which shows they meet the required criteria set by this regulatory body. – Golden Charter are FPA members and are among the few companies working with the Government for better and tighter regulation of the funeral planning market.
- Types of funeral – Next make sure you are given choices on types of funeral as many funeral plans offer different funeral packages based on the different types of funeral, such as simple and traditional options or even woodland burial. For many though they also want something more bespoke to them, this does not have to mean more expensive but a funeral plan that covers exactly what they do want with personal choices. This could be the resting place of cremated remains, transport to the crematorium, type of coffin or where the funeral is to take place. Cold calling companies will often look to sell the cheapest option which may not be the funeral you wish for as they are paid the same commission for every sale. – As well as our funeral plan packages we can create a funeral plan that is totally bespoke to all aspects of the funeral as you wish. We also provide a ‘my funeral wishes’ booklet for you to complete in your own time to list your personal choices such as music/hymn; flowers or donations; or even a theme for your funeral. We do not pay commission to our staff or any third party for a funeral plan sale or lead. We do make a donation to our charity of choice for every funeral plan we sell, this is currently Julia’s House children’s hospice in Dorset.
- Payment – never feel pressured into making the payment at the first meeting or over the telephone if you are not ready to. Also check what payment options are available, such as in full or direct debit and if required over what number of years can you pay up too. Never make a payment direct to a funeral director for a funeral plan. All payments should be made direct to the Trust which is holding the funeral plan monies. – All our funeral plan payments are made direct to the Golden Charter Trust. We also can allow payment by interest free direct debit over 12months or those aged under 78 may pay, dependent on age, from 2-30 years (please discuss this option with us so we can let you know the maximum term allowed for your age)
- Can I cancel my funeral plan – All funeral plan providers within the FPA will allow a funeral plan to be cancelled. If this is after a set period (often 28 days) then you will lose the cost of the administration fee which was built into the funeral plan – this should also have been shown in the costings to you. – As stated you can cancel your funeral plan with us at any time. Also, if you choose to move to a different area in the UK, you may transfer your funeral plan to another funeral director who like us, would be an independent family business and works also with Golden Charter.
We hope this simple guide has given you the advice you need in choosing your funeral plan. If you require any further help or you have a question you wish us to answer then please feel free to contact us. All funeral plan appointments are made under a no-obligation term and can be made in any of our funeral offices or in the comfort of your own home. We can also provide written quotations for any type of funeral plan or payment option you wish.
For more advice or to download our funeral planning brochure please visit https://www.oharafunerals.co.uk/funerals/pre-paid-funeral-plans/