Final Arrangements: Why Funeral, Cremation and Cemetery Instructions should be Part of your Estate Planning.
The Cemetery Registry from The Final Arrangements Network

Why is Preplanning  Final Arrangements of a Funeral, Cremation or Cemetery Lot Smart Estate Planning by You? 
A Baby Boomer Explosion of Deaths will make Final Arrangements an Imperative in the coming two Decades. 

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From the Pages Of:

The Final Arrangements News  Journal

A Light of Understanding in A Forest of Fear About Death, Dying and Debt.
Advisors to The Consumer about Final Arrangements Planning 
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Why In The World Would I Plan My Own Final  Arrangements?

by RW Ward

Why and how do you actually make final arrangement plans? First the why. It is something everyone thinks about at some point. How would I want to be treated and how will my loved ones do this? What will it look like? How will it proceed? Will there be a lot of people? Will there be a service? Who will come? What will they say? 

Yes, everyone, at some time, maybe at the funeral of a friend maybe in a time of sickness or fear. It is not weird or unusual. It is because we are human and can think about what may come and how it may come.

Lately, there has been even more attention given to the subject. You can't change the channel fast enough on the television to escape the fact your family is doomed unless you cover yourself with one kind of insurance policy or another. They never will handle the financial hardship, the commercials say, over and over. Never, unless you sign up.

Don't get us wrong, insurance to cover death expenses is a prudent idea and it works for you and your survivors. It is a way to systematically put the money away and the policies can come in handy as long as you live longer than the fine print restrictions in the policy. So, it is one way to do it.  The problem is it isn't cheap and its hard to say how much you'll really need when it comes time for the family to pay for you. That is, unless you know pretty close how much they'll spend and what kind of funeral you're going to get.

Another way to go about it is to preplan with a funeral home or cemetery. This works pretty well but again not cheap and you will have to budget, if you can't pay for it all at once, up front of course. 

This does provide you with the most peace of mind one can reasonably expect when your planning or even just thinking about your death. Not very comforting but you fix the kind of death care you're going to get and you get to fix the price. This does drive the regular insurance people nuts, you know. You are purchasing some form of insurance, even at the funeral home, a modified whole life policy, is what it technically is categorized as. 

Making  these types of plans is going to become much more important to us, in the very near future. Even the way Final Arrangements Network suggests, which is to stipulate your wishes, even if you don't plan to spend money or are going to cover with insurance or estate funds.

There are facts that make planning a more intelligent concept than at any time before today. The death rate is expected to increase by 50 % or more over the next 30 years, no it isn't because the medical profession is going to fail us, it is because after World War II we had that thing we have all heard about "The Baby Boom". As a results, beginning on January 1, 1997, at midnight 10,000 of us turned 50 years old. The kicker is on January 2, 1997 the same thing happened, 10,000 people turned 50. This little known fact will repeat itself every single day, 365 of them a year, for the next 18 years! Do you wonder why the television, newspapers, magazines, our mailboxes are inundated with greetings from people who want to help us spend more time thinking about our own mortality? 

It is nearly a fifty billion dollar a year business today. Over 22,000 funeral homes, Cemeteries number well over 10,000 with public, private, religious and commercial properties throughout the country.

If you thought, " I got it beat I'm going to be cremated", you're  joining a very fast growing club, that may be disappointed to learn cremation arrangements aren't going down.

Cremation is growing as a choice everywhere. Remember, demand drives prices and cremation is no exception. It isn't getting cheaper. It still is less than regular types of death care choices but remember, if you die you aren't going to be negotiating a whole lot about this.

Alright, what do you do? You, plan everything. Get a good idea of what you'd like to take place for your moment of honored dignity. Get a handle on what it will cost. If you want to take out an insurance policy to cover it or you want to make sure there is enough in your accounts to cover, go ahead. Remember to figure in you probably are going to be around awhile, so whatever it cost, will probably double in 10 years. Before the Boom to Bust stock market and high inflation of the last twenty years, death care costs generally doubled every 8 years. Since we know there will be, nearly 1,500,000, more deaths per year over the next 30 years, because of "Baby Boom" we mentioned early, it won't get cheaper.

This is where we come in. We show you what you need to have in a comprehensive arrangement plan and we offer a way to make sure it could get to the loved ones who will have to implement your plan, when the time comes. You, will also get a very good idea of what you may have to pay, once you know what you want. If you decided to negotiate a preplan with a Funeral Director or Cemetarian and take inflation and second guessing out of the equation, you're going to know just about everything before you make that call to set up.

We also can give you a way to save substantially on things like plots, niches, services, monuments, etc. The Cemetery Registry lists property and goods, dealing with death care, that are often outstanding values. If you decide to buy pre-need you have a great vehicle to help you.

So, bottom line, you use us to make a final arrangement plan. You let us keep it in a non internet access, privacy protected electronic safety deposit box, i.e. offline database with password or encryption protection. We give you a driver's license type card with your name on it and the name of whom you want to take care of your plan when it has to be done. When the time comes your card gets used. Your representative gets told. They contact us, giving the proper identification, of course. We send the file document you will have faxed us, when you opened your Private File Account.

Incidentally, it won't matter were your representative is on the planet. They only have to have access to a computer or fax machine and let us know the number. In moments everything you kept in your file, you wanted them to have is on its way. From there they can make your plans or contact those people you preplanned with. Your plans never get lost in that bottom drawer only you knew about. 

Your family isn't going to go through the added stress of trying to do the things they thought you would want, spending more than you would, out of guilt. You will have told them everything they needed to know and something you're telling them even in that dark moment of tragedy. I did really care.

For More Details on Information and Advice in the article please visit one of the following: 

The Final Arrangements Network at:
The Cemetery Registry at:

About the Author
RW Ward, Essexville, Michigan, USA
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RW Ward is Founder and Managing Director of The New Concept Consultants Organization which conducts Death Care, Senior and Mature Adult consumer market trend research and consulting from its offices in Essexville, Michigan, USA. The author writes and studies marketing and consumer trends in the death care industry as well as the Senior and Mature Adult markets and around the world. His industry experience includes some of the world's largest death care providers.

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