There’s no other way of putting it: shopping for caskets is one of the most challenging things to do. Not only that it’s emotionally exhausting, but it’s also budget-concerning since caskets don’t come cheap.Shopping for casket for your dear one , pet or human is a huge task but this article has broken the job down to bits for you.
You may not know what you’re buying, no matter how careful you are when selecting. You’re in a very vulnerable time of your life, with intense emotions which may alter or cloud your decision.
Let’s not forget that you don’t necessarily have a lot of time for shopping, which can only make the selection process even more challenging.
We’re going to give you a hand and guide you through the whole process. It’s 2 minutes read, so keep scrolling.
What did the one you’ve lost wanted for a casket?
If the person you’ve lost has left instruction about how he/she wanted the casket to be, it’s easier for you. It’s respectful and thoughtful that you consider their last wishes.
Besides, when you know what your loved one would have wanted in terms of materials, features, details, and trim may help you narrow down the possibilities.
When you’re buying for yourself, it’s even more comfortable (in a way). You know the best how you’d like the casket to be.
What’s your budget?
With caskets costing from a couple of thousands of dollars to tens of thousands, it makes sense that you need to have a budget in mind. You don’t want to overspend, so make sure you know how generous/tight your budget is.
For instance, if you go to a funeral home, the funeral director must show you the listing price before showing you the casket per se.
From this point of view, it’s a lot easier to shop online, since you can decide for yourself the price range you want.
Get someone to help you when selecting!
No matter how strong you may think you are, think twice. It’s always better to have someone to support you throughout the entire funeral preparation. If you go to a funeral home, don’t forget that they’re focused on selling, so their experience may intimidate and lead to poor decisions.
Even if there are plenty of funeral professionals that put your interest first, there’s always the part of people that are only trying to make more money. Some may start by showing you the most expensive models, but you may want to start with the cheapest. Casket prices cover a wide range, fitting all sorts of budgets.
Having someone else besides you is going to count every time.
Don’t rush into it!
Even though you’re under pressure, you shouldn’t rush into it and get the very first model of casket you see (unless it’s the right one). Take your time and give yourself a break if you feel that it’s too much for you.
When you feel that your emotions are just too strong, it’s better that you take a break from everything. Go for a walk, have hot cocoa, and clear your mind.
Don’t hesitate to ask for all the info you need!
When you go to a funeral house, you should ask the salesperson everything that concerns you about the caskets. Don’t hesitate to look elsewhere if you feel that the salesperson is too pushy and takes advantage of you.
Many of us don’t know, but you have many rights as a customer. There are rules and regulations about the sales of funeral products, even though they vary from state to state. For instance, the Funeral Rule (enforced by the FTC) asks the vendors to show you transparent pricing.
Shopping caskets online has many benefits, with the fact that you can do it in your own time as the best benefit of all. Even there’s no salesperson to answer your inquiries, and you typically find all the details that you need about a model. If not, they also have contact numbers where you can call for getting the necessary information.
You should also check the independent retailers, and even the big box stores since they provide plenty of options. Remember to check the delivery fees, although they’re not high. Buying online is going to be cheaper than buying from a funeral home, nine times out of ten.
Which type of casket should you choose?
The material used for the casket is going to impact the final price, with wood and metal standing out as the most common choices.
We all love mahogany and walnut since they’re so beautiful, but they’re quite expensive. Pine and poplar make reliable options, and they’re affordable.
When we check the metals, bronze and copper make the priciest options, whereas stainless steel is the most affordable one.
You can go with alternative options, such as wood veneers and cloth-covered wood. As for the new materials (plastic and fiberglass), they’re slowly becoming more and more popular.
Let’s check the details on the most common materials!
To help you decide, we’re providing a brief description of the most popular materials for caskets:
- Metal caskets- are durable and come with a rubber gasket that protects against the elements. It doesn’t alter the decomposition process.
- Bronze and copper- are non-rusting and long-lasting. They may oxidize and are in the high-end category
- Stainless and carbon steel- are affordable and come with various thickness. A small number is thicker and heavier, with the 16-gauge steel being the thickest one.
- Wood caskets- come in a great variety of prices. Pine, willow, and poplar are the cheapest, whereas walnut, mahogany, and cherry (the harder woods) are the most expensive choices. Oak, maple, and birch sit in the middle.
Don’t forget to check the features too!
There are a couple of features that matter for the quality and appearance of the casket:
There are half-couch and full couch types of lids, with the half-couch being the most common options.
- Lining materials
How the lining material is installed counts for the appearance and price of the casket. Tailored, ruffles and tufted are the most common ways. You can also decide on the color of the lining or look for particular interiors. The more you want to customize the casket, the more you’re going to have to pay.
- Special features
Memory drawers are an excellent example of a unique feature. It lets you place some personal items for accompanying the loved one when buried.
One final thought
Having to shop for a casket isn’t easy, but everyone working in the industry knows it and try their best to ease out your pain and effort. When you feel that it’s too much, take five and breathe. Naturally, you feel overwhelmed!