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A Loving Tribute investigates the price gap between English counties for funeral costs and the rise of ‘funeral poverty’.
Funeral costs have rapidly increased since 2014, at an average rate of 6% per annum. Grieving families are often left with unaffordable bills. The average debt people are taking on is £1,744 for saying goodbye to a loved one.
To highlight this concern, A Loving Tribute have analysed data obtained from Royal London to create an infographic. This infographic breaks down the average cost of a funeral across England, focusing on the postcode lottery the public are faced with.
The most expensive area is London, with an average cost of £4,838. Northamptonshire averaged at the most affordable at £3,368. This reflects the ever-growing costs in burial plots in the capital due to limited availability. Kensal Green has seen an increase of 124% for burial plots within the last five years.
Other information collated is the worrying pricing of funeral directors and their clients being taken advantage of during a sensitive period. Of those who were unable to pay for a funeral, 18% agreed a payment plan with the director, 28% borrowed money from family or friends, 9% sold possession and 21% took on credit card/loan debt. 32% were unaware of their chosen director’s most affordable package, 22% were aware as they have brought it up and only 25% were made aware by the directors.
Rob Pryer, the director of A Loving Tribute, comments: ‘With the costs of holding a funeral continuing to rise, it gives the organiser a completely unfair moral dilemma between wanting to give the deceased the send-off they deserve and plunging themselves into an eye-watering amount of debt.
‘The “postcode lottery” gives concern, London ranks as the most expensive county where only 70 miles away is the least expensive in Northamptonshire. We need to remember that the person or people having to organise the funeral will be going through heightened and possibly hysterical emotions, and more support needs to be offered to ease the financial burden. It’s good that the CMA are looking into the pricing and hopefully the awareness will be positive for the industry.’
A Loving Tribute aims to provide an easy service with their funeral stationery at an affordable price. They believe no one should be taking on such a financial burden after the loss of a loved one and fully encourage the investigation by the CMA in funeral costs.
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