While funeral arrangements for a loved one include a lot of things, buying a casket or urn is, without a doubt the most challenging part of funeral planning. Not only is it emotional, but it’s also expensive. Add in the array of casket choices you have to select from and it becomes an uphill climb. It is for this reason that we took the liberty to compile pointers on how to shop for a casket or urn.

Set a Budget

Even though there are other costs involved, a casket or urn usually takes up a considerable chunk of the funeral budget. If you are not careful, it may stretch your budget so much, leaving you and your loved one with no option but to dip into your pockets again. In that light, set a budget so you don’t end up in a financial pit once the burial is over. Remember, a casket doesn’t have to be expensive for you to honor your loved one. For instance, there are some pretty excellent casket options online that are reasonably priced.

Know Your Rights

While grieving, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with emotions and want to take the easy way out. If you’ve never handled funeral planning before, you may even think you’re obligated to do everything your funeral home tells you — but you are not. Under the Funeral Rule, you have the freedom to refuse funeral home packages and even services like embalming. You have the right to a well-detailed price list and you can even buy your casket online and save yourself hundreds in dollars.

Take Time to Learn What Influences Casket Costs

Caskets may be costly, but the price isn’t one-size-fits-all. Some are pricier than others because they have been made using a particular material, or customized to look a certain way. For instance, if you opt for a wooden casket, you will have to choose between options such as cherry, mahogany, and walnut or oak and maple. Each of these has a different cost. For example, cherry is the most popular, hence a cherry casket may be more expensive than others. Besides the material, factors like the paint finish, the interior materials, and delivery requirements do influence the price. Whatever you do, before you make up your mind on a particular one, make sure you know factors that influence the cost of a casket. This will help keep you safe from exploitation.

Ask for Advice

Due to the array of options available, shopping for a casket is not easy. Add in the emotional aspect of grieving your loved one, the process becomes harder. It helps to have someone to lean on during this hard time. Therefore, consider having those in your circle to help you through the process. It will not only be comforting, but they will also help keep you grounded, so you don’t end up going over your budget.

While doing all the above, keep in mind that there is no right or wrong way to go about it. So don’t be too hard on yourself.