In the past, it would have been considered very difficult to ‘shop around’ for a Funeral Director. The very thought of comparing the services of one against another would have been seen as pointless, because everyone did pretty much the same, and charged about the same.
These days, the reverse is true.
With the advent of the internet, and greater customer scrutiny in all walks of life, funerals are no exception. Standards of service differ greatly, as do charges levied by different companies.
Unlike the big supermarket versus the corner shop, reverse economics seem to work in this sector, and the small independent Funeral Directors frequently have much lower prices than the large corporate companies (click here for the source and full report).
So, before choosing a Funeral Director, make sure you know who you are dealing with. Look for the word Independent in the name. Many companies trade under the names of old-established businesses, so ask if they are owned by someone else. Would you rather deal with a locally-owned business or a nationally-owned one?
Ask for a quote and insist that this is accurate. Beware of companies which quote you for a simple service then try and upsell elements such as coffins and vehicles.
Ask anything you want to. You need to be certain that you will have full control over the arrangements. Funeral Directors work for (and are employed by) you. If a company can’t or won’t adapt to something you want, go elsewhere.
Ask if the same person will deal with everything from start to finish. In general, the smaller the business, the more likely this is. It is quite disconcerting when a stranger turns up on your doorstep on the day of the funeral asking who the next-of-kin is. Make sure you will have met this person, and preferably dealt with him or her throughout.
But above all, talk to your intended Funeral Director and make sure you are happy with him or her as a person. No-one can be expected to get on with everyone. A funeral is such a personal event, you need to make sure you are totally comfortable with the person who will be helping and guiding you.
Kingfisher Independent Funeral Services are proud to be the only locally-owned, fully independent Funeral Directors in St Neots, Cambridgeshire. We are recommended in The Good Funeral Guide 2011 and by The Natural Death Centre, and we are the only funeral directors to feature on The Best of St Neots. For more information or if you require any help, please telephone us on (01480) 471001.