Funeral home markups and upselling: Hidden camera investigation (CBC Marketplace)

Funeral home markups and upselling: Hidden camera investigation (CBC Marketplace)


♪ [theme]>>David:This ismarketplace.Undercover inside Canada’sfuneral homes.>>The top level and the bottom level they start at $3,000.>>David:Can you trustthe people meantto help you the most?>>98% is mandatory.>>We’re still grieving. It’s only been a couple days.>>David:High-pressure sales.>>She doesn’t die in the next 90 days we still have to pay in full?>>Yeah.>>David:Hi costs.>>You could be looking at $12,500.>>David: marketplaceandthe Toronto Starinvestigate.Death Inc.What’s brought you here today.>>Well, I love Honest Ed’s. ♪ [super funky]>>David:We’re gathering to saygood-bye toHonest Ed’s.>>It is, in a way, about mourning, but I think it’s also about celebration.>>David:A celebration of life,but not for a person,it’s for amuch-loved bargain store.>>This weekend, for me, is a farewell.>>David:Where decades ofcheap deals and free Christmasturkeys are coming to an end.>>It’s nostalgic, I wanted to see what was going on, all the changes that would be coming to this neighbourhood.>>David:It seems like agood place to testhow much people think aboutlosing something or someone.>>I want to throw a question at you out of left field here.>>Okay.>>David:A question youmight find…awkward.What if you died today? Who would look after everything that needs to be done with a funeral.>>If we died?>>Yeah.>>Okay, that’s kind of morbid. Interesting. I get it.>>It’s pretty scary, yeah.>>What do you want?>>Not too much. I want a celebration.>>My goodness.>>It’s a weird one, I know it’s a weird one.>>I can’t even give you an answer.>>If you were to die today, who would look after your funeral?>>That’s a bizarre question.>>David: Yeah. Have you ever thought of it?>>No.>>Sort of. [ Laughter ]>>What’s your frame of mind when you’re walking into a funeral home? Are you susceptible of to being taken advantage of?>>Of course. You’re probably at the most susceptible point of your life.>>David: You’re about to find out what happens when sales trump sympathy.>>Let’s do this.>>Let’s do this.>>David:Our team is gettingready to headinside funeral homes.Just how up frontare staff whenwe need help the most?We’ll need a cover story.>>Well how about we have an auntie and we call her Alice.>>David:Aunt Alice isn’ta wealthy woman,she wants a simple service.>>There are I am. Okay, great. Okay.>>Should we do this, then?>>Yeah.>>David:Like many Canadians,Alice wants to be cremated.Come join us for the journey.Arbor Memorialis our funeralhome of choice.It’s the largest Canadianfuneral company,and it’s expanding.But it’s also one we’ve heardmany complaints about,from pressure to prepay fora funeral,to a lack of empathy,and preying on emotionsby overcharging.How bad can it be?We head into six locations.>>David:And tell the samestory at each one.>>David:In our time of need,willArborhelp usor add to the heart break?>>David:But simple isn’t whatthey have in mind.In the business of death, costscan add up quickly.>>David:What should you spendon a casket?>>David:What about embalming?It cost $500,but is it required?>>David:So manydecisions to make.>>David:Pre-planning directorslike these make a base salary,the rest is commission.So when it comes to planning asimple funeral,it’s not easy toknow what you really need.>>David:Lucky for us,Aunt Alice isn’t real.But I’m about to meet someonewhose loss is very real.So was the nightmare she facedat theArborlocationin Windsor.>>Hi, Judy.>>Hi.>>I’m David.>>Hi David, nice to meet you.>>Good to meet you.>>David:Judy Wood wrote tomarketplacewanting to shareher story asa warning to others.Did you feel going in there, that a funeral home and its staff, were a place you could trust?>>Very much. We just felt they understand and will try to assist you getting through this difficult time, and not take advantage.>>This is a business unlike any other.>>You’re so vulnerable. They have you. This was a fantastic one. We surprised her with a birthday.>>David:Judy’s sister, Diana,was only 56 whencancer killed her.Diana had paid over $4,000 forher own funeral, believing thatwould cover it, and lessen theburden on her family.It didn’t.Judy’s left to plan the rest.When you’re in the funeral home, how up front were they about all of those charges?>>They weren’t. They weren’t at all. They — the gentleman had a laptop, and there was a large screen, and as he asked us the different questions, that item went up on the list. It wasn’t until the very end that we saw what the cost would be for all of the things we selected.>>And what was that number?>>$10,000.>>And what did you think?>>Oh, we were shocked.>>This is how much you were told it would cost.Arbor recommends a package.>>Arranging and administration is $1755. What that includes, I’m not quite sure.>>David:Making senseof that packageseems next to impossible.>>That doesn’t include the cost of the vehicle.>>The transfer to the funeral home.>>That’s for –>>Doesn’t include the cost of actually getting to the funeral home. I don’t understand this.To reduce the price,Judy gets rid of some services,but it wasn’t easy.>>I didn’t want to seem like I was asking a lot of questions about money. It’s like, well, you pay what you have to pay, right? [ ♪♪ ]>>David:We’re at the samelocation Judyturned to for help.>>David:At first there’ssympathy, but she quickly getsdown to business.Like Judy, we’re offered apackage and told identifyingAunt Alice is company policy.>>David: This planner suggests embalming.>>David:But there is no lawrequiring embalmingand in a lot of cases, no need.>>David:We don’t want aviewing for our fictional aunt,so why all this?Well, it’s part of the packageshe’s recommending.>>David:Better closure?Arbor makes Judy identify hersister, which means extra costsfor things she never wanted.>>He’s very kind saying, you know, “Take your time, go in there.” It’s like, no, we’re not going to take our time. We’re only here to identify her. And yet she was laid out and presented as if she was going to be viewed.>>David: And you were paying for that.>>And we were paying for that.>>David: Even though that’s not something you wanted?>>That’s not what we wanted, and that’s not what she wanted.>>Did you want embalming?>>Not if it wasn’t needed.>>David: And what happened?>>She was embalmed.>>David: And why?>>Well, because she was going to be dressed and displayed.>>David: For you to identify –>>For us to identify her. We’re shaking our heads. Like why are we doing to this? Let’s just go with it, like he says to do that, let’s do that.>>But he’s the guy. How many times have you been through this before that?>>Never.>>So what happens?>>It was terrible. Somebody had dressed her and put make-up on her, and put her in her clothes again, and it didn’t look like her. It wasn’t — in my heart — it wasn’t her. But it was something we were forced to do. So that — we felt — I felt bitter.>>It wasn’t just that there was expense that –>>No.>>David:– you feel is unnecessary.>>No.>>David: It’s that your closure was re-opened.>>Yes. We had said our goodbyes in the hospital. We weren’t given any option. And that’s wrong.>>David:More than 250,000Canadians died last year,including Judy’s sister.In the business of death, thatamounts to a$1.6 billion industry.Big players like Arbor make themajority of the profits,and with our aging population,stand to make even more.[ ♪♪ ]>>David:I’m in Manitoba tomeet a guy who’sa know-all, and now a tell-all.>>Hi, Shane.>>David.>>David: Good to meet you.>>Nice to meet you.>>Thanks very much.>>David:Shane Neufeld hasworked in the businessfor 25 years.At times for the big guys,including Arbor.He knows the secretsof the sell.And doesn’t like what he hearsabout our Alice’s service.>>What she’s doing is increasing the value of that sale with that family.>>David: It was all about identification. It wasn’t about a viewing.>>Well they’re using identification as a means to an end. The end is to get the money for the embalming, because the embalming is expensive but doesn’t cost much.>>But most of us aren’t professionals at burying our loved ones.>>The consumer is at an extreme disadvantage. You can’t possibly come out on the ride side of that if you’re in front of people who are motivated to sell you things that you don’t need.>>David:We dig upArbor job postings.Some traits they value mostinclude : a sales mentality,people who are skilful atnegotiating and closing,who meet and exceedsales quota goals, and here’swhat that looks like in action.>>David:Remember, we only wanta simple service, a cremation,a small celebration,but they’re pushing packages.David:That same-day servicecosts almost $6400.>>David:98% mandatory, andthere’s no mention ofan À la carte option.>>I’d like to see that package, 98% seems like a very high number.>>David:It’s only when wepress that Arbor agrees to getrid of a few items,about $600 worth.>>David:The flower vehicle,for a simple service?We haven’t even talkedprice forthe actual cremation.Imagine if we werewracked with guilt and grief?So what’s really necessaryfor Aunt Alice.Shane takes a look, and saysmany items can go.Worse, he says,it seems Arbor’sdouble charging for staff.He figures the package could becut by almost $2,000.>>Well, in that case our hidden camera team is being lied to.>>I would say so. ♪ [theme]>>David: How much did the casket cost you?>>$895.>>So we managed to get the wholesale cost for that. Any idea how that is? $175. [ Sigh ]>>David:Closing the deal onyour marketplace.♪ [theme]>>David:The bigbusiness of dying.We’re undercover,six feet under,shopping for a simple funeral.>>David:Simple answers areproving hard to find.David:As sad as funerals are,they’re also a business.>>David:And the staff whohelp you plan areworking on commission.Money means a lot.>>David:This plannerencourages lockingin before losing out.>>David:And with hefty prices,you might easily be convinced.Our industry insider used to doit that way too, but guilt gotthe better of him.>>Shane, how are you?>>David:Now Shane Neufeldcalls himselfa “death care consultant.”>>I’ll take these three.>>David:He believes you shouldbe charged a flat fee.>>Shane:It’s about givingpeople the truth.>>David:And products at cost.>>And the rest of the industry, the big guys?>>Their role is to make as much money as they can. Which is fine, it’s not just something I want to do.>>David:And something he sayshe wouldn’t do, push a packagelike this: with transfervehicles, drivers…a funeral coach?>>David:But do they need tocharge almost $350for that vehicle?>>So we’re at the funeral home. Let’s go and see how far away the crematorium is.>>David:The drivetakes one minute.>>This is the crematorium right here>>Right behind the mausoleum. So we have driven…>>400 metres. That’s a dollar a metre.>>Poor auntie Alice.>>David:Another questionablecost, rental caskets, to viewAunt Alice, who remember,will be cremated.>>David: Sounds hopeful, but…>>David:We get our hands on awholesale price list.That casket cost Arbor $1,695.500 less, and they canuse it time and again.Seems like a sweet deal forthem, not a cost savingsfor us.>>David:We try saving money atanother location.>>I hope we can see what’s below that casket.It is tilted towards you.That makes it much moredesirable to purchase,and then you have this.Down below,underneath the other casket,that is strategically placed.>>David:But they don’twant us to have it.>>David:What’s the big deal?>>David:With more than $1,000on the line,they dig in their heels.>>Looked almost taken aback at the suggestion that — that she wants something simple and –>>That’s a way of making people feel minimized and feeling badly for wanting something simple. I mean, they’re being careful but they’re not being forth right.>>David:So much to watch outfor, and even with time on ourside, it’s not easy when thesell kicks in.>>David:This planner startsout wanting a depositof four grand.>>David:But really he’ll takeanything to close the deal andget the commission.>>David:He continues to push.>>She’s already answered the question, no I don’t think we want to do that right now.>>The idea is lock the business down now while they’re inside.>>Lock it in.>>David:Judy Wood’s sisterthought she’d locked it in,but Judy still had topick up the pieces.What would you say toArbor?>>You need to be more up front. People need for understand that people are hurting, they’re coming in here, relying on you, depending on you to not take advantage. And I think we were taken advantage of.>>David:So who’swatching out for us?Is there enough for you to follow up with Arbor?>>Oh, absolutely.>>David:This isyourmarketplace. [ ♪♪ ]>>David:This isyourmarketplace.Our journey insidethe business of death,reveals a world of highpressure and high costs.>>David:Where the up-sell canadd to your grief.>>David:So who’s meantto protect us,theBereavement Authority of Ontariois one of the fewprovincial regulators.It investigates complaints,keeps tabs on the industry,but regulations don’t coverthe kind of hard sellwe’re seeing.>>Good to meet you.>>Good to meet you too.>>David:The registraris Carey Smith.>>This is 98%.>>98% is mandatory.>>David:He doesn’t like someof what he sees.>>You’re the consumer, you have the ability to pick and choose.>>But he’s saying to us that 98% of what’s on there, we got to take.>>There’s things on here that legislation certainly doesn’t make mandatory.>>Should you be told that you can buy things individually and not in a package?>>Yes, you should be.>>David:But with only threeinspectors for more than 600 funeral homes, tactics like this go unchecked.>>This is basically just anidentification container.>>David:We zero in on thathome that doesn’twant us buyinga cheaper casket.>>So they’re following a law but trying to dissuade as from using the less expensive options.>>They’re certainly trying to dissuade you from using it, I just don’t understand it.>>After we’ve seen all this video any concerns around preplanning salespeople?>>Well you showed me a bunch of examples that certainly are at a minimum disappointing and would cause me to have concerns, and that we’ll have to look into.>>We went to six locations, all six are fromArbor Funeral Homes,a big player in the industry.>>I would be surprised if that’s their corporate values and philosophy, they’re a professional provider.>>Is there enough for you to follow-up withArbor?>>Oh, absolutely.>>David: We do follow up with every salesperson we met, they all say call head office. But despite weeks of discussions withArbor Memorial,they say no to an on-camera interview. We’re not questioning their right to make money, but we do have questions about their sales practices, and their response comes in the form of a statement.>>Hi five. There we go.>>David:To avoid heart ache,shop around.Ask what’s not included,and talk about it.>>Have you told your kids exactly what you want?>>No.>>No.>>It almost seems macabre when you do it, but it should be done. [ ♪♪ ]

About the Author: Michael Flood

100 Comments

  1. “For the love of money is the first step toward all kinds of sin. Some people have even turned away from God because of their love for it, and as a result have pierced themselves with many sorrows.”
    1 Timothy 6:10 (TLB)

  2. We should all stand up to these people that rip us off. Put then outta business. Its time for change in all aspects.

  3. The lawful requirements of burial responsibilities should be advertised on the front door of every funeral home or moment you open the door to these places. But more importantly there should be a federal or govt disclosure of this mandatory minimum also the moment discussion starts for the planning a funeral.

  4. It's going to cost $12, 500.00 to be underneath the ground, I just rather donate my body to science be going to call that damn much

  5. The funeral industry is equal to comparable to the United States healthcare system for lack of transparency and overpaying. You can buy a casket from Costco all!

  6. Why would they embalm someone BEFORE they “identify” them? Their explanation for their policy is terrible. Everyone should watch Six Feet Under, great show and reviews many of these issues.

  7. Just build a big bon fire and put me in the middle of it … all my buddies and sit around and drink beer just as it should be 🍻

  8. I remember when a little old lady passed away in a town near mine… she had fancy things but wasn't rich and all her family was gone. Well her neighbors and friends gathered up 3000 to have her barried. The casket was 1500. Well, they found a letter that was about 2 years from the lady that stated she wanted to be put at rest with her jewelry. One ring was worth 4,000. A necklace was 1400, the broach was 1700, the hair clawclip with jewels was 900. Well… at the last second a man she was close to decided he wanted to view her. The staff became nervous….why were they nervous now when they were forcing the friends to pay 1500 more for a viewing but after that man decided to pay for it…they were nervous….. well when he did the viewing he noticed the jewelry was replaced with cheap costume jewelry…the broach was actually taking from another lady. They stole all the jewelry!!!!!

  9. We just had my grandmother cremated. She prepaid her funeral services 21 years ago. They kept pushing for embalming. No. But the body…no. But there could be…no. Then they minimized the casket she bought. She's dead. She dgaf. Though we were grieving, we weren't going to let them push us to spend more. Grandma was simple and no nonsense.

  10. Keep in mind everyone to not be mad at the salesperson they are just trying to make a commission because they are being severely underpaid

  11. I'm gonna be cremated! No service. No funeral. My family can do whatever they want with the ashes! I'm not going to be anywhere my friends or family can go to thinking I'm there cause I'm not! My kids can use my insurance for their needs instead of a funeral home getting it!

  12. my husband an i both agree, it doesnt matter t all what happens to our flesh once it dies.. no funeral.. no plot, no stone, no casket…. let the government take them and do what they will, throw our bodies in a landfill .. bury it in a field somewhere.. dont spend a dime on it at all

  13. Every company in every category of business will have a location that will end up having a scam at some point in time because human beings own it. You could make videos like this with every single business in the world and there will end up being at least one location that will end up scamming people.

  14. I found a free burial ground for my mom's cremated ashes. They call it a landfill. That dried up organic mass in the urn was not my mom. And that body in a $20,000 casket is just a body. The person that was in that body is long gone to the next world.

  15. Funeral homes are the BIGGEST CROOKS on the planet . If you think LAWYERS , INSURANCE companies, BANKS , or REVENUE CANADA are crooks you haven’t scene nothing yet!

    Average with nothing really special Burial NOT cremation is $ 14,680 . A nice casket with a nice Head Stone and your average cost jumps to $ 25; 260 .

    Then if it’s a DOUBLE Head stone then cost on average jumps to $ 29, 840

  16. People we know well opwn a funeral parlour. It's a money making racket. Their mark-up on coffins (caskets) are around 400% and they try to deplete the assurance pay-out moneys so that the family even pay in. And it is all cash up front before they do a thing (the pay-in)

  17. I just want a plain low- cost funeral no mourners no flowers or priest a cardboard coffin will be fine for the cremation no use of paying big dollars just to have it burned/ there is no symphony for the dead or the grieving family…….they MAKE you feel cheap & uncareing

  18. I worked within the funeral industry throughout my late 20's, (NZL) it took over a decade to recover from my guilt.

  19. I was in this industry for a short time to gather research.
    There is Pre-Need, and there is At-Need. Pre-Need is less expensive because it's priced at today's prices. At-Need is higher because it's at the price at the time of need.
    This being said, if you have a Life policy, NEVER take that policy to the funeral home, and surrender it to pay for the funeral. What I am saying is, the face amount is usually greater than the normal funeral costs, and you may not receive any money back.
    What you do is go to the funeral home, never mention the insurance policy, and negotiate the total price. Get the family money together, and pay that way. Then when the insuramce money comes in, pay back the relatives, and the immediate family keeps the difference.
    Now, if you have a Final Expense policy, it will pay most, if not all, and you just might even have a balance to keep.
    There is some Tom Foolery going on in some places. Don't let yourself be fooled by, what looks to be someone who Only wants to help you in this sad time. Their is profit in this industry, don't be fooled. NEGOTIATE for the best price, and remember, there are many other services that they will try to UPSELL to you. YOU are in control, You are in control!!!!

  20. If you think this is bad, you haven't heard about the Asian community. The average cost of a funeral services for a typical Asian family is $40k. Yes, that's right $40k is the average. Most of them paid over $75k for a funeral services. Here in the US the average cost for a casket is around $6k and the burial plot is $7500, add that to the cost of the funeral services at the funeral home and the cost went up to $75k.

  21. It's bs cuz we do have to be buried by law funerals r for the living they need to bring strict laws against these real voltures

  22. Bottom line funeral services are a scam and a rip off if you want a funeral go with natural burial it's cheap and healthy for the ones griefing

  23. In this "industry", too, making money apparently is the question of "how do we pull someone else in?" I live in the Netherlands and here you have seen an explosion of funeral companies in recent decades, and that is not for nothing. A gold mine where people just enter the law. (the line that you are just not going to jail)

  24. I worked for a national funeral company in South Australia. They were only interested in profit!
    Embalming for "health reasons" was pushed, but totally unnecessary in 90% of cases. If basic embalming did take place it would cost about $10 for chemicals.
    The local funeral director's association was just there to ensure ongoing profits and maintaining the mystique for the old boys' network of established businesses.
    State legislation and regulation just supports the dodgy funeral directors and there are obviously a lot of 'long lunches' for government regulators.
    A "no service cremation" of your aged aunt should cost $2,000 and no more! Funeral directors will still make $1,000 on this!
    The guy from the government regulator in your story was clearly looking after his mates in the industry !

  25. When you embalm a person they Don not look like that said person anymore, embalming changes that person's natural features. DON'T EMBALM IS NOT NEEDED.

  26. Oh lordy "Con people have no boundaries"..this is absolutely disgusting & I'm so sorry to those who suffered because of these arse-holes action's..I lost my sister & our mum 3yrs later & it broke me to bits bt when I'm hurting is when my guard goes up & I speak my mind..so Saying that "I got everything my mum & sis wanted" & every year I still get sympathy cards from the funeral directors til I actually asked them to stop sending them please because it's a reminder of how much I miss them both "& the funeral service apologized & stopped"..Guess I'm just one of the lucky ones😢
    But believe when I say "even Australia has these Con artist's"😢

  27. This people are so money hungry is incredible the way this people suppose to help you here they are taking advantage of you sad time when you are honoring family dead.

  28. they prefer cremations to burrials cause with a burrial they lose the casket. with cremations they take the body out and resell the casket. Its why they try and sell u cheap caskets for burrials and expensive ones for cremation.

    When my dad died he was cremated. before the coffin went through the door i put a little mark on the coffin. Went to the funeral home a few days later and saw the coffin there with the mark still on it and it was being sold again.

    For me just put me in a cardboard box and throw me on a bonfire. then put the ashes on the garden as fertilser. Its how it used to be done before the scammers who call themselves funeral services came along to make a lot of profit.

  29. 100% true, and you better believe it! When my son unexpectedly passed away, all I had was school insurance that amounted to $10,000. My sons funeral amounted to almost the very cent. I didn't question it, he was my son. Then my mom passed away and she was a resident at a Nursing Home. The funeral home wanted/needed to see an updated bank statement of her account. She was being cremated, and only had a little over $8,000. in her account. By the way it was the same funeral home. It literally shocked me to find the fees amounted to the amount in her account. Again, it was my mother, so it passed. It wasn't until I was well into the grief that the coincidence hit me. I looked at the previous paperwork and fees, and it was as underhanded for sure. They put in their own numbers to add up to whatever the amounts available to spend were. Be careful during times of grief.

  30. The funeral home picked up my Mom from the hospital, cremated her and I conducted my own funeral service with relatives on my own property, concluding with burying her ashes underneath one of my pine trees. Right off hand I don't remember the price for cremation but it seemed fair considering they do have to make some money.

  31. I've played music at funerals before, some for pay. I've always wondered about the ethics of the money that circulates around people's deaths. It's pressure to understand that the burden is mostly on me to set the price correctly. They don't have infinite energy to go hunting for alternates, especially when these sleezebuckets are already forcing people to do it for arrangements for the body.

  32. They put rosary beads on my dad's hands, even though a member of his church helped us through the process and they were told not to. The cheap coffins are too small for average sized people, there's a lot more going on than packages.

  33. cremate my body using forest woods and put it in a biscuit can(I like those when i was a kid) and scatter my ashes in windy day on top of the highest mountain. I just dont want somebody digging my bones up. and the scattering part is showing my romantic side.

  34. Philippines it’s cheap to bury somebody my mom and dad are buried in cremation and that’s where I’m going to go Philippines cremation definitely🇵🇭

  35. Thats what I worry about. My parents have a trust and already paid for their cremations when they pass. I just hope no one tries this crap that that poor woman in Canada went through on me or there will be hell to pay from my husband.

  36. I want my skeleton to be hung in a classroom somewhere. I'm on ODSP and my local funeral home went above and beyond anything, I could have imagined but I don't understand why embalming would be done in a cremation. I don't get it my funeral home rented us a casket for a few hours to have a small viewing and service for her (well actually I think they did it for free I never gave them any money and neither did anyone else I don't know if they got paid by some other agency I'm not sure all I know is I didn't pay anything) but if you're having a cremation you don't need to buy a casket just to have it burned with your body.

  37. Funeral home are business not charity’s try going to a dealership and ask the salesman for a cost price pick up not going to happen we have massive overheads yes products that are not required should be removed if people can’t afford it

  38. That guy isn't going to look into it, he is probably getting a HUGE Kickback from the funeral homes NOT to look into it!

  39. Funeral homes in central Maine, US are no better for the most part. Cremations at cremation facilities, not through a funeral home can be had for 1 price, but they try to upsell you fingerprints on jewlery and on and on.

  40. Cremation and my ashes placed in a music box shaped like a carousel 🎠 playing the Carousel Waltz, or in a music box with a pop up dancing ballerina playing Waltz of the Flowers.

  41. Is this woman out of her mind? You can't have an open casket without embalming. Unless, the person is being buried the same day. She apparently hasn't experienced the stench of human decomposition. It's beyond description. There isn't a word for it.

  42. A DVD?? Of what? Why would someone want that? When you're feeling to happy in life just watch the funeral DVD to bring you down again? Uh no thank you I'm good!

  43. My husband died in 2017, I checked the prices at 2 different funeral homes, & both quoted approximately the same price for the same funeral. I explained I was on a pension & asked for the most cost effective funeral, the only expensive item I chose was an oak casket. Both quoted approximately $12,000 for a very basic funeral, which was much higher than they originally led me to believe the "package" would cost. The 2nd funeral home quickly decided they "weren't right" for my husband's funeral when I questioned their prices, & caught them being dishonest in what they said to me. The 1st choice for a funeral home reduced their price after talking to the manager to approximately $8,000. I found several things neither told me about. They led me to believe I had to purchase everything through them, when in fact for example, even for the casket you can purchase anywhere including online; floral arrangements can be purchased at any florist or even brought from home. They originally told me I had to track down a cheaper casket myself, but after complaining they did this for me. The woman in this video is correct in how funeral homes hide costs & aren't up front about what the service is. Be skeptical about administrative costs, they had difficulty explaining them to me & decided to waive them when I insisted on an explanation. They made the same claim to me about embalming, & the cost of driving the body from the funeral home to the cemetery (only about a kilometer away) was $350. My husband specifically did not want his funeral advertised because he was estranged from some family members he didn't want attending. Despite me being clear about this, the funeral home advertised on line, & when his family called them they revealed locations of the church & burial. The family came & made the other guests very uncomfortable. I was outraged & complained to the manager, who offered a second funeral for free (pointless since he was already buried). When I protested he seemed worried I would complain to the head office & offered to compensate me by paying for the burial costs, approximately $2000. (Where we live there is a separate fee for the actual burial called the opening & closing of the grave, from the funeral.) Funeral homes are trying to take as much money from you as they can, question everything they say because they truly have no sympathy for your loss.

  44. Nonsense to pay for a box for $2000. Do it yourself, a trip to home Depot you can build a box made out of 2 by 4 and some plywood. It don't have to look beautiful because it is going 9 feet underground.

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