Funeral costs going up, Kern County residents have several options to fund funerals

Pre-planning & county coroner can help with costs

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Car washes to raise money for funeral funding is not an unfamiliar sight here in Bakersfield. But there ways people can afford funerals without fundraisers.

An average funeral, with all the that goes into the burial, costs an average of $7000. But the costs can go up to "ten-twenty thousand dollars," according to David Lee, a funeral director at Bakersfield Funeral Home.

Cremation, is a much less expensive option that runs around $800. Lee has noted that more people are opting for this as "our culture is changing."

The third option is to pre-plan by getting funeral insurance. Most funeral homes, including Bakersfield Funeral Home, offer this to the public. By planning ahead, setting a budget and making monthly payments, family members and next of kin virtually have no hassle when it comes to laying their loved one to rest. 

This insurance is transferrable. So, if a person gets it in Bakersfield but dies in New York, their family can still use the funds. 

There is also an option for those who can't even afford a cremation through a funeral home. It is called "Indigent Cremation" and is run by the County Coroner's office. Next of kin can apply by filling out an application, and showing proof of a low fixed income. The cost is $243, and that includes just the cremation (no service or viewing.)

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