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Have you thought about your funeral?

The traditional burial funeral is falling out of favour, while many people haven’t told loved ones about their plans for their final send-off, a study by Skipton Building Society has found. 

The survey of 2,000 people revealed that just one in five (21%) want to be buried, while three in five (59%) want to be cremated when the time comes. But despite this, many haven’t made their wishes for their send-off known. 

Half (51%) haven’t told their family or loved ones what they would like to happen to their body when they die, while six out of ten (59%) haven’t discussed funeral preferences and eight out of ten (81%) haven’t written their wishes for their funeral into a will. 

Maitham Mohsin, Senior Propositions Manager from Skipton Building Society, says: “If your funeral is a celebration of your life, who best to sketch it out but you? You have full control over what happens, what’s said, what’s read and what’s sung. You chose if you want to be buried with any keepsakes, or scattered in a place that’s special to you. 

“But who would know this unless you tell someone? Far from being a sad or morbid thing to do, many find it’s often quite the opposite.” 

Have peace of mind with a pre-paid funeral plan 

A fifth (18%) of respondents who said they were put off the idea of a burial funeral said it was because of the cost. But by taking out a pre-paid funeral plan, you can ensure that many of the costs of arranging a funeral are taken care of in advance, providing financial peace of mind  for your loved ones. 

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Skipton Building Society offers a range of pre-paid and pre-arranged funeral plans provided by our specially selected partner, Dignity, that cover the cost of the guaranteed services within the plan you choose.

While cremation fees are covered, burial costs vary, so our funeral plans contribute a given sum towards burial funerals, rising with RPI inflation. Other funeral costs such as Doctor's or Coroner's fees, a memorial or headstone, flowers, and catering for a wake are not included in funeral plans. 

Make your wishes known 

While the majority of people (80%) know whether they want to be buried, cremated or have an alternative send off, some big decisions about funerals are yet to be taken. 

Less than half of people (45%) know whether they want a religious service or not, while only a quarter (26%) know the main entrance and exit music they want playing at their funeral, and just one in every 14 people (7%) know the readings they’d like. 

As well as making your wishes known in your Will, you could write them down and give it to someone you trust. This could be as a letter, or you could use a downloadable form such as My Funeral Wishes, created by the Dying Matters Coalition, an organisation supported by the NHS, voluntary and independent health and care sectors to promote public awareness of dying, death and bereavement.

Skipton’s Maitham Mohsin added: “The one certainty in life is that we’re all going to pass away at some time. And we either go out in the way we want, or in the way that someone else thinks we want. 

“It just seems sad that our final opportunity to leave a positive mark on friends and family, for them to ‘hear’ from you one last time, is being delegated by so many of us. Let’s put a stop to this, and plan our own final big bash!” 

Skipton Building Society is here to help you plan for all aspects of your life ahead. If you’d like to know more about the legacy planning services we offer, such as Will writing, Power of Attorney and Inheritance Tax Planning, and how we may be able to help you, get in touch to get the conversation started.

Retiresavvy is brought to you by Skipton Building Society. Please note that the funeral planning, Wills and Power of Attorney services are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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