Cash-Squeezed Bereaved Hold Funerals at Home

Home funerals can save thousands in tough times
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 26, 2008 10:14 AM CST
Cash-Squeezed Bereaved Hold Funerals at Home
The economic climate is driving some to save money on funerals.   (Shutterstock)

Amid the recession, many who’ve lost loved ones are turning to less expensive in-home funerals, the Los Angeles Times reports, and it's creating a booming business for “death midwives,” consultants versed in preparing bodies and completing paperwork for such services. Once, such midwives were in demand for their alternative care; now their low cost—often hundreds, not thousands, of dollars—is a major draw.

“We thought, 'Why should we put all that money into the ground, when we could leave it to our children and grandchildren?” said one woman who worked with a midwife to bury her husband on their property; final price: less than $1,000, compared to the $10,000 price tag of many traditional funerals and burials. Green burials, which can save upwards of $1,000 by skipping embalming and grave liners, are also on the rise.
(Read more funeral stories.)

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