One funeral director believes that a new arrangement to make prices clearer to customers will encourage more people to “be aware of what is around them”.
Wisbech Funeral Service‘s James Mooney-Dutton welcomed the Competition and Market Authority (CMA) order to address concerns about the clarity of funeral expenses.
“We welcome the fact that as a funeral home we need to be transparent about our prices,” he said.
The CMA’s order for funeral homes to display a standardized price list on its website and on its premises was enforced on September 16 following an investigation.
James, who runs the Laura Mooney-Dutton business, said they’ve tried to be as clear as possible with prospects since they moved in with her Altmarkt area at the beginning of this year.
“Our motto is that we are personal, caring and affordable as we don’t believe that a terrible occasion should be something that should ruin you,” said James.
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“I hope it will make funeral directors understand the importance of being inexpensive and do something to make people aware of their surroundings.”
As part of the order, prices must be specified, which include the main cost of the funeral and the cost of the individual items that make up the funeral.
James believes there is “no excuse” for funeral directors to post their prices and hopes the order will protect families from being overwhelmed.
“They say that when you’re with a funeral home, people hear 25 percent of what is said, but they remember 8 percent,” said James.
“That shows that people are being exploited and that something has to happen.”
Martin Coleman, chairman of the investigation at the CMA, said they are ready to take action against companies that don’t obey the rules.
James, who ran a funeral home in northwest London before moving to Wisbech, admitted that adapting to the new rules was not easy.
However, he hopes the arrangement will give families more opportunities to review their options before committing to a company.
“We’d recommend families check out a website and we can discuss their options,” added James.
“We’re supposed to keep that, and I hope the funeral home will do the same in the future.”