Saying your final goodbyes to a loved one is heart-wrenching. The added burden of having to worry about how you’ll cover the costs of the funeral can make the funeral process that much more overwhelming. A pre-determined financial plan is, therefore, important to have in place so that you can focus on paying your last respects to your dearly departed loved one rather than focussing on other unnecessary peripheral distractions that may detract away from this heartfelt occasion.

As with most things in life that are subject to inflation, funeral costs are no exception. It may come as a surprise, therefore, to hear that a South African funeral can cost in excess of R20 000. The total cost of the funeral will depend on various factors including:

  • A grave burial or cremation

Depending on the wishes of the deceased or arrangements made by family, the cost for cremation versus a grave burial can differ quite a bit. Grave burials tend to be more expensive due to the cost of the coffin, the tombstone, and the ceremony itself. With the average coffin price at R8000, a gravesite at R6000 and tombstones that can vary in price quite drastically, you could be looking at a grave burial bill totalling anywhere from R14000 upwards.

Cremations can vary between R7000 and R15000. For both a cremation and a grave burial, there is also the option of having a separate memorial service and the cost of a venue, catering, flowering arrangements and the funeral officiant should also be taken into account. A cremation certificate (costing around R600) will also be required to permit the cremation.

  • Undertaker fees

Undertaker fees vary depending on the services being offered and can start from around R5000. The role of the undertaker in the funeral process is important, as they care for and prepare the body for the funeral as well as prepare the necessary funeral documentation. They can also assist in organising the funeral process, provide the hearse to transport the coffin with and may also provide counselling services if needed. 

  • Venue hire and other miscellaneous expenses

Venue hire and catering costs also constitute one of the biggest expenses of a funeral as venue prices can vary greatly depending on the type of venue that is hired. Then there is also the catering expenses and cultural catering aspects to consider.

As evidenced, the cost of a funeral is not cheap. Proper financial planning is, therefore, a prerequisite to ensure that you are not surprised by expensive funeral costs at such a fragile time.  The same applies to many other financial commitments (such as improvements on your home for example) that may require a substantial capital outlay or investment. Contact Real People today for loan options that can help you better prepare for the future.

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