rate is increasing in Indiana as it is across the U.S., and although the
cremation rate in Indiana has not yet hit the national average (45%), more
families are considering cremation as a funeral alternative. Cost
is cited as the main factor in why Americans are turning to cremation as
a preferred funeral option [NFDA report 2014], and it is not surprising
when you consider that a cremation is likely to save you in the region
of $6,000 on the cost of a traditional burial. We have outlined below
6 key tips to help you arrange a cremation and save on the cremation cost.
Cremation services in Indianapolis
Many funeral homes in Indianapolis
are now offering cremation services. Some have their own crematory
and others subcontract with a local crematory or another funeral home.
A cremation service can be conducted with all the trimmings associated
with a traditional funeral, but the deceased is transferred to the crematory
after the service instead of the cemetery. This is what is commonly
referred to as a ‘Full-Service Cremation’ or ‘Cremation with Service’.
An alternative is to have
a ‘Cremation with a Memorial Service’. This is where the deceased
is cremated prior to the service being held, and a service is held with
(or without) the cremation urn present. Often a cremation memorial
service takes the form of an ash scattering ceremony. These days
there are many creative ways that a cremation memorial can be designed,
and many artifacts that can be constructed using cremated remains.
It is also possible to have
a simple, basic cremation without any services. This is commonly
referred to in the funeral industry as a ‘direct cremation’. Although
the funeral service provider does not include any funeral services with
this option, you can still conduct your own memorial services at a later
date once the cremated remains are returned to the family.
1. Consider a direct cremation
– the most economical cremation option
Although a cremation service
will immediately save you money on the cost of a burial, a direct cremation
is the least expensive cremation option. It can facilitate the immediate
task of the disposition of the deceased, and a memorial service can be
held at a later date if this is what the family wants. The deceased
is collected from the place of death, transferred to the funeral service
location, prepared for cremation and the necessary paperwork completed,
and then the cremation is conducted. The cremated remains are returned
to the family usally 5-10 days.*
2. Compare cremation costs in
Not all cremations are created
equal! The cost of a cremation can vary significantly between different
funeral providers for the exact same cremation service. The Cremation
Association of North American (CANA) quote the average cost of a cremation
at $3,200, but it is possible to arrange a cremation for less than this
in Indianapolis. We are a nation of consumers who generally like
to shop around and compare prices, but somehow people feel this is not
the dignified way to go about arranging a funeral. First, understand
that there is nothing undignified about asking how much a cremation costs,
and because cremation prices DO vary so much, it is really important that
you ensure you are getting value for money. Why should you pay over
$2,000 for the same service you could have purchased for $900? We
have conducted some cremation cost comparison in Indianapolis to assist
you understand how the cost of a direct cremation can vary between providers.
Disclaimer: This cremation
cost information was obtained from providers in October 2014. Prices are
posted to help families make informed decisions. However, periodically
providers change their prices. We make every effort to ensure the prices
are accurate, but prices must be verified directly with the listed funeral
3. Understand WHO is your cremation
As I have already mentioned
cremation prices can vary, and a significant aspect of this can depend
upon the service provider you select. Corporate funeral homes generally
tend to charge higher prices. Service Corporation International (SCI)
operates several funeral locations in Indianapolis under the Dignity Memorial
brand. The more elaborate traditional funeral home (with large overhead)
will often be more expensive. Some funeral companies trade under
more than one brand. For example Flanner & Buchanan also operate
Legacy Cremation & Funeral Services, and the Neptune Society in Indianapolis
is operated by SCI. Do not be afraid to clarify the ownership of
a cremation services provider. If you are unclear about whether they
are corporate-owned or family-owned – ask them.
4. Rent a casket rather than
purchase one for a cremation
A casket can be one of the single
biggest funeral merchandise expenses. More funeral homes are offering
rental caskets these days for the purpose of cremation services.
The casket is redundant after the service as it cannot be cremated with
the deceased. (A cremation container is used) So if you plan to have
a funeral service and require a casket, it would be wise to make inquiries
about which service providers offer rental options.
5. Arrange your own memorial
More families today are opting
to conduct their own memorial services. It is a way that American
families are re-claiming the death care ritual. Cremation makes this
a realistic alternative. Once the cremated remains are returned to
the family, they can make arrangements to hold a memorial service.
These days’ families are opting to hold memorial services in a variety
of locations. It does not have to be a place of faith or a funeral home,
it can be held at a community center, a country club, outdoors or just
about anywhere. Life celebration services are becoming more popular,
so the memorial does not have to be a somber event.
6. Do something different and
personalized with the cremated remains
Cremation presents so many more
choices about what we can do with the cremated remains. Cremated
remains can be interred in a cemetery plot just like a burial, but this
does cost for the interment fees. Cremation niches can work out less
expensive than a burial plot, but more families who choose cremation, are
opting not to inter at all. Ash scattering ceremonies are gaining
popularity as families follow wishes to scatter remains in a special place
to the deceased. There are a plethora of cremation memorial artifacts
now from cremation pendants to cremation birdbaths, and services such as
making gun cartridges filled with cremated remains to blasting remains
Arranging a direct, low cost
cremation service for $795 can mean that any additional funds can be spent
on memorializing the deceased with a service designed by the family, or
creating a unique memorial artifact that the family can treasure for years
It is easy to arrange an
affordable cremation in Indianapolis if you consider these simple tips.
Death care need not be an expensive affair. The DFS Memorials provider
for Indianapolis charges just $795 for a direct cremation, call (317) 207-6929
now if you need a low cost cremation or wish to preplan a simple cremation.
||Expert Author: Sara
Sara is the Editor in Chief
for US Funerals Online and has been researching and writing about the death
care industry in the US for the last 5 years.
*This can depend upon the necessary
authorizations and permits being issued and the schedule at the crematory.
cost cremation providers in Indianapolis
Homes in Indiana
Cremation & Funeral Planning Guide