casket at cemetery

Your Guide To Creating A Cost-Effective Memorial Fund

Planning a memorial isn’t easy, but it’s one of those inevitable tasks every person must do at some point in their lives. Creating something unique that honors your loved one’s legacy is the primary goal when building one. But you may also need to be mindful of staying within a reasonable budget. Our guide will walk you through the essential aspects of planning a memorial fund and how to create one that fits your needs!

Are All Memorial Services Expensive?

Memorial services can vary in price dramatically. If you plan on having a traditional funeral service, the costs can range from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands. On the other hand, you can opt for a direct cremation or a simpler ceremony, which is often much more affordable. Ultimately, it’s up to you and your family to decide the final price.

Key Factors To Consider When Calculating Your Memorial Fund

When creating a memorial fund, you need to keep a few main points in mind:

Your Overall Budget

Setting a budget gives you and your family a clear idea of what you can afford before planning the memorial’s details. As a point of reference, the National Funeral Directors Association determined that the median funeral service cost was $7,848 in 2021. Although some people spend more or less than this, there are plenty of options that can meet your exact needs.

Your Headstone

A headstone can make up a large portion of your memorial fund. However, don’t think you’ll be forced to sacrifice quality and uniqueness to find something within your budget. For example, granite headstones combine durability, variety, and cost-effectiveness to offer you the best of all worlds. There are also many different inscription options, religious symbols, and other unique designs to make your loved one’s memorial stand out without breaking the bank.   

The Type Of Memorial Service

Another essential aspect to consider is the ceremony itself. Depending on your religion and personal preference, most memorial services are held at your place of worship, your loved one’s burial site, or a local funeral home. These services are often more expensive than other non-traditional alternatives.

However, remember that you don’t need to follow a set plan for your loved one’s memorial. For example, if having a traditional service is out of your price point, organizing a more affordable and intimate ceremony at someone’s home will still give your loved ones a place to grieve together. 

Create A Memorial Fund That Fits Your Needs 

Organizing your loved one’s memorial can be a lot of pressure, especially when you have a specific budget in mind. Fortunately, many cost-effective options exist for creating a memorial to honor your loved one’s legacy. Our experts at Eternal Memorials offer premium memorial services and monuments to many families in NYC, Long Island, New Jersey, and beyond. Please contact us or visit our website if you have further questions about our services or want to schedule an initial consultation today.

green moss on headstones

What to Look Out For When Repairing Your Loved One’s Headstone

Part of honoring your loved one’s memory is ensuring their final resting place is always looking pristine. Even though artisans build headstones to last a long time, they are still vulnerable to exposure and will start to fall into disrepair if you aren’t careful. Whenever you visit your loved one’s grave, immediately contact your monument provider if you see anything out of place. The earlier you fix the problem, the easier it will be to preserve the original design and stop any more damage from happening.

How Long Do Headstones Last?

With some of the oldest tombstones and graves dating back thousands of years, headstones can last forever, even if they haven’t been well cared for. However, you’ll see cracks and deterioration from the elements after some time without maintenance. The material you choose for your loved one’s memorial also affects long-term decay. While granite headstones are more weather-resistant and reliable, a material like marble may not last as long because of its mineral content.

How Can You Tell When Your Headstone Needs Restoration?

There are a few clear signs your headstone needs some repairing. The next time you go to the cemetery, let your monument service provider know as soon as possible if you see these details:

The Headstone Is Starting To Sink

If you see your loved one’s grave sinking, know this is a natural phenomenon. Graves can shift due to escaping air pockets and ground settlement. Despite cemeteries’ efforts to prevent this problem, weather and temperature changes can significantly affect the soil’s structure, which may damage your headstone over time. As a solution, consider adding a base to your monument or talk to the cemetery staff about possible ground repairs to stop it from sinking further.

The Design And Lettering Are Disappearing

In honoring a loved one’s memory, headstone lettering is important to keep their legacy alive for generations. But naturally, time and the elements will start to fade its original engravings. You can maintain the memorial’s design by scheduling regular cleanings to ensure the lettering remains intact. In some cases, however, a gravestone’s design may need more than simple maintenance. If the original text has already been lost to time, ask your provider to fully restore the memorial’s lettering to make it look brand new.

The Memorial Is Filthy

From powerful Nor’easters in the winter to torrential downpours in the spring, every season has something that can make your loved one’s monument look filthier. Add in the falling leaves, lawn clippings, or other natural debris, and your headstone will need regular cleaning sessions to keep it looking its best. Headstone cleaning is a complex process, and using common household chemicals may even damage it further. The best thing to do is to hire a monument cleaner who knows how to care for your family member’s headstone and to maintain its beauty.

Bring New Life To Your Loved One’s Memorial

Preserving your family member’s burial site is one of the best ways to keep your loved one’s memory alive. Here at Eternal Memorials, we offer customized full-service maintenance packages and restoration services to make your loved one’s gravestone always look beautiful and timeless.

We have provided high-quality cemetery monuments and memorial services to families across Long Island (Nassau County & Suffolk County), Brooklyn, Queens, New Jersey, and beyond for the past 100 years. We are available seven days a week if you need assistance creating a memorial for your loved one. Please visit our website or contact us today to learn more about our services or schedule your initial consultation.