Free Funeral Planning Guides and Resources

Funeral Planning is a difficult task. The more you have prepared prior to losing a loved one, the less you have to worry about when the time comes. I have compiled some helpful resources to assist you in planning and getting information together in the event someone is near the end of life.

1.The first thing listed below is a free funeral planning checklist. It is a free download from Microsoft that downloads to Word. It is not extensively detailed, but will help you make necessary decisions. The link below will open a Microsoft download page. About half way down the page is the download button.

Free Funeral Planning Checklist

2. Next is a page that lists numerous Free Funeral Program Templates. Here you will see several templates. Some are fancy, some are basic. You can surely buy programs if you want, but these work fine, and all you need to do is put in the information, and print them out.

Free Funeral Program Template

3. Also listed is information for preparing funeral resolutions. These do not cover every detail or every religion, but will give you a good starting point.

Resolution Funeral Obituary

4. I have written a funeral planning guide for you to use to gather information, and make preparations for a funeral. This is not all inclusive, there will always be some items that may come up that is not in the guide. Record as much information in advance if possible to convey others or your choices for final arrangements. We used a binder with plenty of sections and put it in a safety deposit box that the kids have access to.

1. Personal Information:

Record the person or persons names spelled correctly with social security numbers, race, sex, and religious preference.Residence address including apt number, city and state.Birth date and location - may need a copy of the birth certificate.Emergency Contact information - include their physician information as well.

2. People to Notify

Make a list first of people such as friends and family members to contact in the event of their death. This list is mainly for the people you want to inform of the death so they can attend the service if there is a service planed.

Legal Notifications

This list includes people such As: Party responsible for funeral arrangements, Executor of estate, Lawyer.

Also prepare obituary information and decide which newspapers to contact. The funeral home can usually submit the information if you wish.

Assemble Important Documents

We always keep our important papers in a safety deposit box. A personal home safe, or fire proof lock box is good too. Here is the documents you should have available:Safety Deposit Box location and access information location of keys, etcWill, birth certificate, social security card, military form DD214 discharge, Insurance policies, bank account information, income tax returns, burial plot ownership papers

3. This part outlines what the actual funeral planning beginning with:A. How will the body be cared for. Burial, Cremation, or body donation. B. What type of Service if any will be conducted: Traditional, Memorial, graveside service, or direct where no service is conducted.

4. Decide how you prefer to have the body presented: Open or closed casket, and if you will have a visitation and where.

5. Where will the service be conducted: Funeral Home, Church, or other like at home.

6. Clothing: who decides on the clothing to be worn and any jewelry.

7. Clergy: Choose who and contact information for who will deliver the service.

8. Pallbearers: Make a list of who and their contact information.

9. Music: make a list of possibilities for the music selection.

10. Readings and funeral messages: Make a list of who and what type of readings and what part of the religious book the passages are located in.

11. Florist: if you have a preference you plan to use, write down the contact information for them.

12. Special Service arrangements such as Military or Fraternal group service.

13. Charity donations, scholarship, or other memorial type selections: Make a list of possibilities.

14. Cemetery Information: Location, ownership papers if any with legal description, if this is a multiple plot or family plot, a sexton may have to do a locate service to determine the appropriate spot. Also Urn interment or placement may require additional procedures.

15. Funeral Products: This is the part of funeral planning that seems to be a way for funeral homes to cash in because if you have not already done some funeral planning beforehand, then the stress may lead you to buying things that was costly, and you may not have otherwise done if you didnt have to make all these decisions under stress.

A. Casket: look now to see what your preferences are. If you purchase a casket prior then keep the receipt with the other important papers. Some types of Caskets are: Wood, precious metal, or steel. Steel can be purchased in 16, 18, or 20 gauge. This is the thickness of the exterior metal. This really makes no difference in the look, it just costs more for the thicker gauge. Finally- decide on the way the lining should look and the materials used.

16 Most cemeteries require a vault for the casket to be placed in in the ground. There are other options, but usually a concrete vault is best.

17. Cremation Urn: Take your time and decide beforehand if possible on the type and style of urn you prefer. There are thousands to choose from.

18. Grave Marker or Monument: First see if the cemetery has restrictions on the type of headstones are allowed. With this in mind, decide on the material, style, and what will be engraved on the marker.

19. Stationery Products: Programs, etc needed for a traditional service A. Prayer Cards with a verse chosen B. Guest Book C. Funeral Program with the information and a verse if any placed on the card. D. Thank you cards.

20. Compile any ancestry information, work history, other accomplishments, survivors to be placed in the obituary.

Hopefully this guide was helpful to you for your funeral planning needs.

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