November 18, 2011
Paying ahead for your funeral might seem ideal, but a prepaid plan can come with unexpected costs.
Tom Waggener remembers how pleased his parents were when they told him 15 years ago that they had prepaid for their own funerals. “It was so satisfying to them” to think that their children were relieved of the burden, says Waggener, 65, a retired state employee who lives near Taylorsville, Miss.
But after Waggener’s mother died in 2006, the funeral home gave his family a bill for more than $10,000. It attributed the extra cost to a special order for the casket she had chosen, which was no longer in stock. “It was an unpleasant business,” Waggener says. “I really don’t think prepaid funerals are a good idea.”
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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was originally published in the September 2011 issue of Kiplinger’s Retirement Report.