The average age at which a person thinks about their own funeral is 51, according to research from the Funeral Planning Authority (FPA).
The FPA say this is often prompted by the death of a family member such as a parent.
However, the organisation found that two thirds (62%) of people who decide to pre-plan their own funeral see this as a practical decision rather than an emotional response to the loss.
Of those who had considered their own funeral plans, seven in 10 (70%) had made some effort towards arrangements. Just over one in 10 (13%) bought funeral plans, one in five (18%) had a life insurance policy in place and two in five (39%) had savings put aside for the eventuality.
But while planning for your own funeral arrangements and discussing it with loved-ones can seem morbid, it may help to save friends and family from the added financial grief should the worst happen.
The organisation found that the most discussed topics with family or friends are decisions over cremation or burial (47%), type of service (41%), location (35%), costs (34%), and music (31%).
Graeme McAusland, chief executive of the FPA comments: “We’re encouraged that so many of those over 40 aren’t shying away from making arrangements for their own funeral – including the financial implications. While it can be prompted by a sad occasion and feel like a foreboding task it does ensure that people’s wishes are carried out and financially prepared for.”
Check for registered funeral providers
The FPA is a self-regulating body set up by the pre-planned funeral industry to oversee funeral planning companies’ operations and ensure value for money for consumers.
Mr McAusland explains: “As the regulatory body for the prepaid funeral planning industry our aims are to raise the standards of provider behaviour in line with our Rules and Code of Conduct, protect consumers by ensuring the industry is focused on their needs and interests.
“Not all providers are FPA registered so it is important that consumers know about the FPA and understand why they should buy a plan from a registered provider.”