Two thirds unaware funerals cost €5,000

Two out of three people underestimate the cost of funerals, even though most realise they are not cheap, writes Evelyn Ring.

A basic funeral in Ireland costs about €4,000, but that excludes the plot and headstone.

However, just 34% of people accurately estimated that a funeral, with the plot and headstone included, would cost more than €5,000

The State bereavement grant of €850 was abolished in 2013, and there have been calls for its reintroduction in Budget 2018.

Mutual life and pensions and investment company, Royal London, which commissioned the survey on funeral costs, said people should plan a final farewell to avoid any financial shocks.

Almost one third (31%) significantly underestimate the cost of funerals, putting it at between €1,000 and €3,000. Nearly one in 10 (9%) put the cost at €2,000.

Asked, if they died tomorrow, who would pay for their funeral, 38% said they expected their family or next of kin would pay.

Just under one third (31%) said the cost of their funeral would be paid out of their estate.

Only 13% had set money aside to pay for their funeral, while 1% thought their employer would pay for it.

However, almost one in five had no idea how it would be paid.

The over-55s represented the largest group (26%) to have set money asked for their funeral.

Unsurprisingly, young people do not dwell on their funeral — just 7% had saved for theirs.

Asked what sort of funeral they wanted, 44% said they wanted it to be simple, with no fuss; 16% wanted a “proper send off” or wake, with 15% not caring at all about it.

When it comes to a funeral for a partner, 30% said it would be a simple affair, with no fuss.

One in five (20%) want to organise a proper send-off, and the number increased to one in four (25%) among younger people.

This article first appeared in the Irish Examiner.


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