Funeral expenses can be a significant burden for families, especially during a time of grief. However, seniors in Australia have several strategies at their disposal to potentially save up to 100% on these costs. Here’s how:
Set Up a Dedicated Savings Account
One of the simplest ways to cover your funeral costs is to save for it. By setting up a term deposit or savings account separate from your everyday bank account, you can gradually build up the funds needed. Inform your family and beneficiaries about this account so they can use your savings to pay for your funeral when the time comes.
Invest in Prepaid Funeral Plans
Prepaid funerals allow you to plan and pay for your funeral in advance, locking in the costs at today’s prices. This means no matter how prices rise in the future, your funeral costs are covered. You can pay in full or make a deposit and pay the rest off with regular payments. Remember to shop around, as different funeral directors offer different packages.
Consider Funeral Bonds
Funeral bonds are a secure way to save for funeral expenses. You pay a deposit then make regular payments over time, and your money grows in value with interest. The money can only be used for your funeral, ensuring it’s not spent prematurely. Many funeral bonds let you choose a funeral director, or you can let your family choose one at the time of your death.
Use Your Superannuation
If you have superannuation, your family may be able to pay for your funeral with it. However, it can take time to get the money, and your family may have to pay upfront and claim it back once your will is finalised. In some circumstances (for example, if you have a terminal illness) you may be able to get your super early.
Apply for Government Bereavement Payments
Services Australia offers payments and counselling to help people when someone close to them dies. If you get a Department of Veterans’ Affairs pension, your family may be eligible for bereavement assistance following your death. This can significantly reduce, if not completely cover, the cost of a funeral.
The Role of Life Insurance
While the strategies above can help cover funeral costs, life insurance plays a crucial role in providing financial security for your loved ones. A life insurance policy can cover not only funeral expenses but also provide a financial cushion for your family, helping them manage other expenses after your passing. It’s an investment in their future and peace of mind.
In conclusion, with careful planning and consideration of the options available, seniors in Australia can significantly reduce or even completely cover their funeral expenses. Coupled with a life insurance policy, you can ensure that during a time of grief, your family can focus on saying goodbye rather than worrying about costs.