Crowdfunding for funerals is on the rise, but there are other options!Submitted by Foundation Private Wealth Management on March 5th, 2019
In today’s world, crowdfunding through sites like GoFundMe has become an amazing tool for tech startups, artists, gamers, and more, to launch their ideas and raise awareness for their products. Not only for business ideas, though, crowdfunding has also been compassionately used to aid families in times of crises by paying medical bills (in the US, largely), supplementing costs when disabilities occur, or helping Canadians pay for surgeries south of the border that aren’t available here. Personally, I’m blown away by the constant compassion shown by friends, family, and even strangers on sites like this. But there are also some sad numbers that, as an insurance advisor, are tough to see.
One alarming trend that’s been steadily increasing over the past few years is the number of funerals being paid for using GoFundMe and other similar sites. According to their website, GoFundMe is used by over 125,000 people per year to fund memorial expenses. This doesn’t factor in how many campaigns are run through other sites, like crowdrise.com and fundthefuneral.com.
To be clear, I am not at all criticizing anyone who has used this for a loved one or supported others to fund memorials. I appreciate these causes as much as any other, and I truly believe that the folks using this service are doing so because they have nowhere else to turn. That is what breaks my heart when I look at all these campaigns. After losing a close loved one, the last thing someone should have to do is go through a crowdfunding campaign to (hopefully) cover the costs of laying them to rest. The added stress at an already emotional time is unfathomable to me. And it doesn’t have to be this way.
Depending on the loved one’s wishes, funerals typically cost a minimum of $5,000, but can end up totaling $25,000 or more. There are a variety of life insurance policies available to cover final expenses like this, some for as little as $10/month, that provide coverage of $25,000. For people with medical concerns that they may feel would make them uninsurable, there are simplified and guaranteed issue policies that will cover final expenses for $30/month or less.
The big reason why I do what I do is because I want to be able to help people take control of their financial lives, and to do so with a transparent and honest approach. It’s things like this that really make me feel like our industry has failed people, if they are being forced to rely on crowdfunding in tough times, when there are so many affordable options available. If you’re reading this and you’re not covered at all, please contact me to see if we can find a policy that fits your budget and protects your loved ones.
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