Keeping you informed on News and Views within the funeral planning industry
Most Middle Aged Consumers prefer to purchase Funeral Planning products away from the Funeral Home
New research by Funeral Planning firm, Golden Leaves, has revealed that the majority [62%] of middle-aged consumers, aged 50 – 65, and over 40% of consumers over 66 years of age believe funeral plans should be purchased alongside other ‘later-life planning’ products, such as a Will, rather than purchased via a Funeral Home.
The survey, which questioned 1,050 consumers between the ages of 50 and 85 on their perceptions of the funeral planning sector, also revealed that over a third [35%] of consumers aged 50 – 65 felt anxious or distressed with the idea of having to visit a funeral parlour in order to purchase a funeral plan.
This behaviour was confirmed by the fact 65% of respondents within this age bracket who had purchased a plan, had done so via a Funeral Planning firm, Will writer, Financial Advisor or Legal Services company.
Conversely, in analysing the responses from consumers aged 66 – 85, both consumer behaviour towards purchasing the product, and perception towards funeral parlours, does change with age.
Results show that over half [54%] of consumers between the ages of 66 – 85 didn’t believe that funeral plans needed to be associated with ‘later life’ planning products, where a massive 84% advised they didn’t feel anxious or concerned with having to purchase a funeral plan directly from a funeral business.
The research, therefore, demonstrates that although middle-aged consumers understand the important role of a funeral plan, they would feel more comfortable in purchasing it as part of the ‘later-life’ planning process via a dedicated firm or financial advisor; where the vast majority of more elderly consumers expressed no concern at having to enter a funeral parlour, confirmed by the fact 55% of 66 – 85 year old’s advised they had or would purchase a funeral plan from a Funeral Director.
On discussing the research, Barry Floyd, Managing Director of Golden Leaves, said:
“This latest research is extremely telling and very much aligns with Golden Leaves’ experience of consumer behaviour associated with the purchase of funeral plans spanning the last decade at least.”
“For many people, entering a Funeral Parlour can seem a finite and scary experience, yet they understand the importance of having a Funeral Plan in place to avoid burdening their loved ones with associated costs. Ultimately, for consumers in the 50 – 65 age demographic, aligning funeral plans with other ‘later-life’ planning products, such as will writing, is a natural association that focuses on the importance of maintaining control, whilst removing it from a morbid funeral parlour environment.”
Other key take outs from the survey include:
- Despite the age bracket of consumers surveyed, just 65% confirmed they had written a will, with just 24% advising they had purchased Life Insurance.
- 46% of respondents believe that the average funeral costs between £2,000 – £4,000, with 44% of respondents believing the average funeral to cost between £4,000 – £6,00
- 51% of respondents thought the average Funeral Plan costs between £10 – £25 per month, with 37% believing plans to cost between £25 – £50 per month.
“Considering the current political appetite to potentially reform the regulation around the funeral planning product, it is important that HM Treasury and policy makers understand that careful consideration needs to be applied when constructing any new regulatory framework.”
“The majority of middle-aged consumers and even 46% of consumers aged 66 – 85 would rather associate funeral plans with later-life planning, as opposed to the somewhat scary environment of a funeral parlour, which means funeral plan providers and other estate planning, will-writing, financial or legal representatives need to be able to offer these products to fulfil the clear and considerable consumer demand.”
“The growth witnessed by the sector over the last decade, has been largely delivered by consumers buying from funeral planning companies and their reselling agent networks amongst other non-funeral-based distributers. This has actually led to increased market competition, effectively driving costs down whilst keeping operational standards high in order to attract and benefit consumers.”
As one of the first to introduce the funeral plan product to the UK market, Golden Leaves are widely recognised as being one of the UK’s oldest and most reputable Funeral Planning companies.
Chairman of Golden Leaves, Steve Rowland added: “Golden Leaves are supportive of increased regulation, but we firmly believe that it should not reduce consumer choice, increase costs for the consumer, or distort the market in such a way that delivers poor consumer outcomes.”