I encourage all my clients and audience members in my seminars to shop their funerals so they get a good idea of what it would cost if they pass away. My mom, who is as smart as she is frugal, already planned which funeral home in their hometown they were going to use. The decision was based on an advertised price of a complete cremation for under $1000. Since they are in their late 80s, she saw no reason for any excess expense and there would only be a celebration of life ceremony designed by the family. My parents celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in early January of this year and within 2 weeks after the party, we had to put my dad in a nursing home as he was ready to make what mom calls “his final roundup.” My siblings and I took turns ever few days to come in and support mom and make sure Dad was resting comfortably. Hospice helped us manage his care and the transition so it was spelled out for us what was going to happen by the end of the month. My sister took my Mom to the “bargain” funeral home to set up the arrangements. A couple hours after they left that funeral home, my sister called and said she just “didn’t have a good feeling about it.” She said she couldn’t possibly feel good about them handling my father professionally, with compassion. They were absolutely not professional in their approach and my sister said we truly get what we pay for there. I guess we should have known when everyone we told that we were going to use this particular home always gave us a look of hesitation and bewilderment. Now, we knew why. On my shift the Monday before my dad passed away, I asked for recommendations from my parents’ friends and they referred me hands down to another funeral home in town. They said we would pay twice as much, but we would be much happier with the experience. I went down there and made the arrangements that day. I felt they were utmost professional, they were very caring and they spelled everything out “including the cost” and the tissue donation process for my dad. The extra funds were well spent for the peace of mind. We said our good-byes to my dad with tears and laughter from great memories. I truly believe that it would have been a different outcome with the “low-cost” funeral home. Shop, visit and don’t base decisions on price – that is my advice to you today.