If you want to plan a funeral, you may wonder about the costs of cremation. However, paying for this service is not as expensive as you might think. It is possible to plan an affordable cremation.

The affordability factor may be why more are turning to cremation over burial as a choice for themselves or a loved one. Cremation is more popular than ever before. According to the NFDA, the main reasons for the continued rise in cremation rates are:

  • Cost
  • Environmental impact
  • An increasingly transient population
  • The weakening of traditional religious prohibitions
  • Changing consumer preferences

Let’s look at how to plan an affordable cremation.

Work with the Crematory Directly

Working with a funeral home that has an on-site crematory is the least expensive and most straightforward option. Working directly with the crematory is best because there is no middleman expense to you. The cost of cremation is paid directly to the provider of the service.

Use a Funeral Home with an On-Site Crematory

Working with a funeral home with an on-site crematory often means you can have family members and loved ones present during the cremation. In addition, many funeral homes include a dedicated area for families to observe and be a part of the cremation experience.

Choose a Casket Carefully

One expense related to a funeral is generally the casket. With a traditional coffin and burial, you also pay for the burial site and vault. 

Alternatively, with cremation, the crematory may place the body in a container made of cardboard or a wood product such as unfinished or pressed wood.

According to NOLO, “No law requires a casket for cremation. On the contrary, federal law requires a funeral home or crematory to inform you that you may use an alternative container and to make such containers available to you.”

Skip Embalmment

North Carolina does not require the embalming of a body by law. Whether to choose embalmment or not is entirely up to you.

There are many reasons you might object to the embalmment of remains. The embalming fluids are flammable, corrosive, and highly toxic. Often they contain methanol, phenol, glutaraldehyde, paraformaldehyde, and formaldehyde. Many environmentalists object to these chemicals in a buried body because they can leach into the soil polluting the area. 

With cremation, you can schedule the disposition of the body at a time that is not long after death. Even if you have a funeral service with visitation and a casket, in today’s world, you can keep a body fresh through refrigeration until the funeral date.

Another option is to schedule a cremation soon after death and plan a memorial service in the future with an urn.

Choosing an Urn

Similar to choosing a casket, you can spend quite a bit on a beautiful urn. There are beautiful antique or jewel-encrusted choices that could run $50,000 or more. 

You can also pay more than you intended if you choose to make jewelry or other crafted items from your loved one’s ashes.

In addition, you can also choose a cemetery for your loved one’s ashes. According to Legacy, “You can bury ashes in a cemetery just like you would bury a body in a casket. Since an urn is typically much smaller than a casket, you may be able to bury the ashes of multiple people in one burial plot. … When you inter ashes in a cemetery, you can add a standard headstone, just like you would when burying a body.”

Instead of a pricey cemetery plot or mausoleum, it is possible to plan an affordable cremation. The economical choice is cremation in a plain container and then a simple urn or scattering of the ashes.


Making a plan for your cremation before you pass away takes the pressure off of your loved ones to choose expensive items or services to honor you. Instead, if you make the plan, your family is left with an ability to focus only on their loss. Preplanning for your death makes choices easy for your family so that they can instead begin their grief journey. 

Losing someone you love is difficult enough without having to make excruciating decisions about the type of casket or service.

We Can Help

At Renaissance Funeral Home, we created our cremation tribute center specifically with you in mind. You may participate in the cremation process in our beautiful, respectful, and private viewing room and even plan a witness ceremony before cremation. Our crematory is on-site and managed by our employees. In addition, our direct cremation services are affordable. 

We are here for you as you plan for your own future or for a loving tribute to a deceased loved one. Contact us to find out how we can help you plan an affordable cremation with celebration of a life well-lived.