How much does the average funeral cost?

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No one wants to think about it, but it will happen one day – someone you love is going to die and you need to provide a funeral for them. The last thing you want when you’re grieving your loss is a surprising cost That’s a lot bigger than you thought, so it’s helpful to know how much the average funeral costs, what those costs include, and how they’re paid.

Here’s what you need to know.

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How much does a funeral cost?

The average funeral costs between $7,000 and $12,000. This includes a viewing, funeral service, preparation, transport, coffin and burial. It does not include the cemetery property, flowers or a tombstone.

For a cremation funeral, the average cost is $6,000 to $7,000. Again, this does not include flowers or burial of the remains.

What is included in the cost of a funeral

The Federal Trade Commission has a detailed list of funeral expenses on its website. Here are some of the things that are included.

Basic charge

These are the things that the funeral home provides for each funeral. It includes planning the funeral, obtaining the necessary permits, obtaining copies of the death certificate, preparing the obituary, taking possession and storing the body, and coordinating with the person conducting the burial or cremation.

goods and other services

Optional services may include charges for corpse transportation; embalming or otherwise preparing the body; the viewing, ceremony or memorial; the funeral service; the limousine or hearse; a coffin; and cremation or burial. The funeral home can also arrange for flowers, an organist or soloist, obituaries, clergy and so on. You can pay for these items directly, or the funeral home can arrange for them on your behalf.

The National Funeral Directors Association estimated the following costs for a funeral with burial and for a funeral with cremation in 2021:

burial with burial
Basic fee (required) $2,300
Transfer of the remains to the funeral home $350
embalming $775
preparation of the body $275
Inspection (staff, use of the funeral home) $450
Funeral service (staff, use of funeral home) $515
hearse $350
Company car or limousine $150
Printed materials (program, prayer card, etc.) $183
Metal box $2,500
vault $1,572
In total $9,420
Funeral with cremation
Basic fee (required) $2,300
Transfer of the remains to the funeral home $350
embalming $775
preparation of the body $275
Inspection (staff, use of the funeral home) $450
Funeral service (staff, use of funeral home) $515
hearse $350
Company car or limousine $150
Printed materials (program, prayer card, etc.) $183
Cremation fee $368
Coffin for cremation $1,310
urn $295
In total $7,321

These costs are average values ​​and your specific requests may change the costs. For example, the coffin is the single largest expense of a funeral, and there are many options for coffins. You can choose a more expensive coffin which could cost as much as $10,000. Or you can opt for a more plain coffin that can cost less than average.

The cost of a funeral can also vary depending on where you live. According to the NFDA, the average cost by region is:

region cremation burial
New England (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island) $7,069 $7,881
Mid-Atlantic (New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania) $7,463 $8,093
South Atlantic (Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida) $7,070 $7,800
East South Central (Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi) $6,314 $7,271
West-South-Central (Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas) $6,405 $7,334
East-North Central (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin) $6,953 $7,868
West-North-Central (Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Missouri, Kansas) $7,560 $8,500
Mountain (Idaho, Montana, Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada) $5,694 $6,888
Pacific (California, Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington) $6,028 $7,225

Even though you are going through the grieving process while planning your loved one’s funeral, you don’t feel like you have to spend any money extra money for the fanciest casket or huge bouquets of flowers. Think about what your loved one would want – they probably wouldn’t want you to spend extra money on their funeral expenses.

Additional costs not listed above may apply. The cost of things like flowers, a headstone, and a burial site can vary widely.

How to pay for a funeral

There are a number of things to consider when arranging the funeral of a loved one.

The funeral director expects payment in advance. If you intend to use the proceeds from a life insurance policyor from the deceased’s property, you may be surprised that the funeral home will not wait for the insurance claim to be processed or processed settle the estate. You must pay the funeral home at this point and then settle with the estate once it is settled.

If you have the time to plan your finances for a funeral, consider setting aside money in a specific location saving account or – to save your loved ones the trouble – a death account. It’s also a good idea to have a general emergency fundwhether you’re using it for a funeral or some other unexpected expense.

Advance payment

Some people choose to prepay for their funeral. This relieves the heirs financially and also ensures that the funeral takes place as the deceased would have wished. To prepay for your funeral, meet with the funeral director to discuss your wishes and they will provide you with the cost of your funeral.

The funeral home will then have you take out life insurance on your life with the funeral home listed as the beneficiary. The amount you pay depends on your age and the services and products you choose. When you die that Life insurance pays The funeral home will pay for your funeral.

Bring away

Losing a loved one is difficult, and planning – and paying for – a funeral can be an added burden. Knowing the costs upfront and being prepared for what’s likely to happen when the time comes can make this difficult time a little easier.


Planning a funeral is difficult and can be overwhelming. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about funeral expenses.

  • Is $10,000 enough for a funeral?
    • Yes, in many places $10,000 is enough to cover the cost of an average funeral. Note that the total cost of the funeral may be higher than average if your choices of coffin, flowers, headstone, or cemetery lot are more expensive than average. It’s important to know your budget when making these decisions.
  • What is the average donation at a funeral?
    • Between $50 and $100 is a typical amount for a condolence message – an amount close to the cost of a bouquet of mourning flowers.
  • Which type of burial is the cheapest?
    • Cremation is generally the least expensive option for a burial.
    • If you wish, you can also donate your body to research, save the cost of cremation or burial, and do something good at the same time.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that is accurate, impartial and timely. We verify every single statistic, quote, and fact against trusted primary sources to ensure the information we provide is accurate. In our you can learn more about the processes and standards of GOBankingRates editorial policy.

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