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Cremation Services in Indianapolis: 6 Tips for arranging a low cost cremation

The cremation 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 (55%), 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 2019], 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.

Direct Cremation $650 Call (317) 207-6929

Cremation Funeral

#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, 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 usually 5-10 days.*

#2. Compare cremation costs in Indianapolis

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) quotes the average cost of 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 $650? 

#3. Understand WHO is your cremation service provider

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 service 

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 into space.

Arranging a direct, low-cost cremation service for $650 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 to come!

It is easy to arrange an affordable cremation in Indianapolis if you consider these simple tips.  Deathcare need not be an expensive affair.  The DFS Memorials provider for Indianapolis charges just $750 for a direct cremation, call (317) 207-6929 now if you need a low-cost cremation or wish to preplan a simple cremation.

Low-cost cremation providers in Indianapolis
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Indiana Cremation & Funeral Planning Guide

*This can depend upon the necessary authorizations and permits being issued and the schedule at the crematory.