How To Choose a Funeral Director

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It seems that everyday there are new Funeral Directors popping up, each with their own service offering and pricing structure.  In QLD, Funeral Directors are not required to adhere to any real regulations (apart from the storage and handling of the deceased), so finding a Funeral Director who has their own high standard of practice and care is essential.

Funeral Directors should at all times act with Care, Compassion, Professionalism and Integrity. After all, you are trusting us to care for the most precious people in your life, it is the least we can do!

So what is important to look at when you’re researching and choosing a Funeral Director?  Here are the top things to look for:

Reputation

Not all Funeral Directors are created equal.  Like most businesses, Funeral Directors rely on their reputation and the networks to generate funerals.  When you are looking at what Funeral Director to use to care for your family, thoroughly research their business. A good idea is to see if they are known by any other names, or if they have had other names in the past.  Some Funeral Directors have multiple business names and use these names to appear to offer a different service, when in reality, it is the same service and just a different name.  It’s also a good idea to look at those other names and see how they conduct their business, have they had any negative issues in the past and really identify if they are someone you would want to care for your loved one.

Facilities

Just like reputation, facilities play a big part in deciding on what Funeral Director is right for you.  Do they have compliant, approved facilities? Do they maintain a high standard of after death care?  Will they treat your loved one with the respect, dignity and compassion they deserve?  Standards are different for each person and it is important that you ask these questions and trust your instinct when talking with Funeral Directors.

Pricing

Price is always a factor when making any investment, even for a funeral.  The most expensive doesn’t mean the best service, and the least expensive doesn’t mean less service.  However it is important to remember that price should never be the only deciding factor in choosing a Funeral Director.  Look for a Funeral Director who has transparent pricing and is not afraid to explain their pricing structure to you and all of the things that each item includes.  Funeral Directors should promote their pricing on their website, they should provide a clear breakdown of costs and there should never be any surprises when it comes to the final invoice.  Whilst price is important, it is only a small part in choosing the right Funeral Director.

Convenience

Funerals should never be a difficult event to arrange.  Your Funeral Director’s primary role is to ensure that you are able to create a celebration for your loved one that is unique, tailored and personal.  They are there to support you and your family and to ensure that things go exactly as planned.  If your Funeral Director is unwilling to move from their cookie cutter approach, or is unable to offer a personalised service because of big business policies and procedures, then you can work with another Funeral Director.  Even if your loved one is already in the care of another Funeral Director, you still have the right to change your mind and go elsewhere.

There are so many Funeral companies to choose from, so why not start with a local, family owned business, support a local family rather than a large multinational corporation.  You’ll generally find that the service you receive is much more personal and tailored with a family business than with a big company.  That good old saying “When you support local you are helping to pay for ballet lessons, football boots and to put food on the table, rather than buying a new luxury car for an already overpaid CEO” is so relevant to the funeral industry.

So when it comes time for you to choose a Funeral Director, do your research, talk to a few, and use your instincts to go with a Funeral Director you can rely on, and develop a trusted partnership with.

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Bryan McCartney is a Funeral Director and Celebrant with a background in psychology and the human condition. He is part of McCartney Family Funerals, a local family owned and operated funeral business serving families throughout Brisbane and the surrounding areas.


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