The first thing you want to decide is the type of wood that you would like your casket made out of. Caskets are made out of many different kinds of wood, each with their own unique look and feel.
The four most common types are listed below:
- Oak – a very sturdy and strong wood. It is also the most popular choice for caskets.
- Walnut – a dark wood that represents strength, nobility and solemnity.
- Maple – a wood that is light in color and symbolizes purity and sincerity.
- Pine – available in either poplar or basswood which are very soft woods that are native to North America.
After you’ve selected the type of wood that you would like your casket to be made of, you’ll need to decide on the characteristics of the casket. These include what kind of lining it should have (everyday use or high end), color, and embellishments which can be anything from simple handles to inlays and stamps.
Linings are designed to protect the casket from everyday wear and tear. Everyday use linings are made of soft cambric fabric, cotton or other similar materials. These are relatively inexpensive options for your loved one’s final resting place. If you would like a higher end liner, velvet is an excellent option; it is durable and long lasting, as well as flame retardant.
Other options for linings are satin, silk or wood veneers. These are often used in caskets that will be displayed at a visitation or funeral service where the public can view them. Embellishments are also an accessory to your loved one’s casket. You can choose to have handles or simple edges on the casket, rather than an inlay of precious metals. If you would like more than just a basic design on your casket, there are many options that would be appropriate for your loved one’s final resting place.
If you decide that you would like an inlay on your casket, there are many different types of metals you can choose from. Gold, silver and copper are the most common inlays found on caskets, but brass is often used in certain styles as well. The amount that each inlay adds to the price varies depending on which metal is chosen. These embellishments may be used to represent themes like hope, faith, strength or spirituality.
If you are still not sure what type of casket you’d like for your loved one, it is perfectly acceptable to view them in person so that you can see the many different options available. You may also want to ask friends and family members if they would be able to recommend a casket that they have purchased in the past.
People are generally pretty set on their choice of casket once it has been decided upon, but if you are still unsure about your final decision after all of the above information has been considered, now may be the time to speak with a funeral director or clergy member for advice and guidance.
So, how much does a casket cost?
Caskets start at around $900 and go up to as much as $20,000. A quick search online will give you an idea of the many options available.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, “A casket often is the single most expensive item you’ll buy if you plan a “traditional” full-service funeral. Caskets vary widely in style and price and are sold primarily for their visual appeal.” It is not uncommon to buy caskets from third parties (not from a funeral home).
Depending on your preferences, you can find caskets made out of just about any type of wood that are simple or ornately embellished.
Caskets are available everywhere from local funeral homes to online retail stores and auctions. It is important to note that buying a casket from a funeral home is often more expensive. However, the majority of funeral homes offer caskets for sale and will allow you to pick up a casket from their facility rather than having it shipped directly to your residence. Under the US “Funeral Rule” funeral homes are required to agree to use a casket that you acquired elsewhere, and they can’t charge you a fee for using it.
You may be interested in: The Benefits of a Prepaid Funeral