Cheapest Funeral Plans in the UK? Low-cost, cheap funeral plans come in all shapes and sizes, and many don’t actually do what people think they will. In terms of costs, cremation plans cost less in most areas. If you ignore the cheap and nasty Over 50s non-profit whole life plans, and you should, then there are three types of low-cost funeral plans. But bear in mind that the cheaper the plan, the more likely something is missing – call us for no-obligation advice to avoid problems, or just get a copy of our Free Guide to Funeral Plans emailed to you – just pop your email in the box below and click on SEND. Be better informed (and cautious!)
I will mention the Life Insurance Over 50s plans, of the type which used to be sold by Michael Parkinson. Basically, the message is to avoid at all costs, unless there is really no way you can afford a proper low-cost prepaid funeral plan, but if that is out of the question, we have a contact who can help you out. Just be aware: no money back if you cancel or miss payments, no inflation proofing. All they do is try to get you to top up with a more expensive plan every 3 years or so, so you soon end up paying more than you would have for a proper low-cost funeral plan in the first place.
These are generally the cheapest funeral plans in the UK. They are more properly known as direct to crematorium funerals. The process is simple: a person dies, the undertaker collects the body, completes the formalities then takes the deceased direct to the cheapest crematorium they can find – which will rarely be local. No one other than the undertaker may attend. There are major differences between the plans offered by the various companies which are not always obvious. So that is as inexpensive as you can get. Some of them are properly guaranteed, others may still leave significant costs to be picked up by the family. Don’t assume that the word “guaranteed” means EVERYTHING is guaranteed – it rarely does!
2. Funeral Directors costs only plans
They make no allowance for third-party costs such as cremation, services, celebrant/ minister etc. So they look like really cheap funeral plans. In reality, they are about two-thirds of a funeral plan, with the family left to find the rest – probably £1200 (but sometimes way more) at the time of writing, but rising rapidly. Much better than no help at all, but you should always look at the allowance for third-party costs when buying a funeral plan, just to make sure there is one, as we have seen some very sneaky advertising. They are the cheapest funeral plans (apart from direct cremation). Perhaps useful where you have already got an Over 50s Plan which will now only cover part of the cost after inflation has eaten away at it. If not, there is certain to be a shortfall as many costs were never intended to be included. But, again, much better than nothing as long as the family are aware! One well-known brand advertises nothing but this sort of plan to pull in the enquiries because it appears to be a very cheap funeral plan. We hope they do explain everything in detail or there are going to be some very upset relatives rushing for their credit cards so you funeral can go ahead.
3. Cut Down Plans:
We really don’t like these cheap funeral plans! That said, some are much better than others. In order to make a cheap funeral plan appear as competitive as possible, the third party cost allowance is reduced by about one third. Worse, the plans rely on crematoriums offering cheap off-peak slots and both the date, time and place of the funeral controlled entirely by the funeral director to keep costs down. Some plans allow the funeral to be as far away as 50 miles. Most allow the funeral to be as early as 8.30 or as late as 4.30 in midweek. Not so much a cheap funeral plan as a gamble which people often won’t fully understand without our Independent Advice. AVOID. That said, one or two are not too bad if things are really tight.
We are pleased to see that one major provider dropped this type of plan in 2018, but others are still adding them in a bid to appear price competitive. In a helter-skelter drive to offer cheap funeral plans, we think the firms have (mostly) got it wrong in this case, it is a product not fully understood by the public.
Going back to the subject of Direct Cremation, the vital point to remember with direct cremation is that the family and friends have no involvement whatever, once the body has been collected. In most cases, the ashes will eventually be returned in a box – sometimes at extra cost. That is why they are the cheapest cremation plans available.
What causes us concern is the potential hurt to those left behind who may not be close family, but who did care for the deceased. They may seem perfect where the family live hundreds or thousands of miles away, but we would ask people to at least give a second thought to those who are more local.
Direct Cremations are and will remain the cheapest funeral plans by a considerable margin. In the right circumstances, they are perfect. But please do talk to us before going ahead: our independent advice costs nothing and may save hundreds of pounds or a major mistake, Just call us on 0800 0588 240 and we’ll review the market for the best value for your needs and wishes – and pocket. Many people buy cheap funeral plans without realising WHY they are cheap, often because a salesman just wants to make a sale rather than give sound advice. We have no problem with cheap plans as long as buyers understand that they are cheap for a reason, and the family need to understand just what is not covered to keep initial costs down.
There is every reason to share costs with others where you can’t afford the cost of a full normal funeral plan yourself.
Warning: Make sure the cheapest funeral plans ARE proper funeral plans!
There are quite a few low-cost funeral plans on the market that don’t include the cost of the funeral: BUT THEY DON’T ALL MAKE THAT CLEAR unless you are an expert. That means that the family may need to stump up something around one-third of the then-current cost of the funeral before it can take place. Once again, this type of plan has its’ place and having around two-thirds of the costs paid is a good start. But both the buyer and the family need to understand what they are buying. That is where our expert help comes in, to save you money and perhaps mistakes.
We appreciate that many people have no option but to go for a cheap funeral plan, but at least we can guide them to get the best possible value for what they can afford.
For more on Direct Cremation, go here. For the cheapest funeral plan suitable, and a best price guarantee, call us on 0800 0588 240. Or use the enquiry form.