A blog from Gareth Coles.
Over the last few months, we’ve all been faced with new challenges. From the cost-of-living crisis to the ongoing threat of a recession, there has been increased financial pressure impacting our community. Naturally, this is affecting everything from mental health and wellbeing to funeral service trends and how families are choosing to commemorate the life of a loved one. Alongside all this change, the funeral industry has also updated its regulations around funeral plans to ensure that these are correctly regulated, and consumer funds are protected. There’s a lot to take in, which is why I wanted to share a quick blog to help break down these changes.
They may be a simple, straightforward funeral service option but we’re seeing an increased demand for direct cremations across our community. Thanks to a resurgence during the pandemic where funeral attendance was limited due to government guidelines, direct cremations proved to be the most practical solution. However, their popularity will continue beyond this period as a more affordable solution amid the cost-of-living crisis. According to the Cost of Dying Report 2022, 18% of all funerals completed in the last four years were direct cremations, a growth of 4% across the industry. Plus, with 64% of people now aware of direct cremations as an option, this is only likely to increase further.
Celebration of Life
We’re also seeing an evolution in how funeral services are conducted. According to the Cost of Dying Report 2022, 74% of funeral directors have seen a rise in celebration of life funerals, with almost 50% of all funeral services described as a celebration of life in 2021. As many of us choose to opt for non-traditional services that offer a more ‘upbeat’ send-off for loved ones, 65% of funeral directors have reported a drop in the number of traditional religious festivals. With hit shows including Netflix’s Sweet Magnolias paying homage to this new approach, as well as celebrities including Vanessa Bryant choosing this style of service for her husband Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna’s final goodbye, its popularity is set to grow.
Funeral Plan regulations
From July 29th, all funeral plan providers will need to follow new FCA rules to enforce high standards on governance and financial resilience. For the first time, this will mean that the funeral plan market is regulated to help protect consumers and improve the way they are treated across the board by all providers to ensure they feel confident that they will receive the funeral they expect when they are gone. For your complete transparency, we want to let you know that we are authorised under Golden Charter so will be eligible to continue to offer funeral plans to our community. For more information, visit: https://www.fca.org.uk/consumers/funeral-plans/providers-list
Free-to-access bereavement support
We also appreciate that more of our community is looking for additional support when coping with bereavement. However, during the cost-of-living crisis, private counselling services are an expense that many are unable to spare, which is why we’re continuing to offer free-to-access bereavement support services for our community through carefully selected partnerships. For more information and to access the support you need, click here >>>
For more information about further funeral industry updates or any of our services, please get in touch with our team today >>>