Obviously no one wants to think about death, much less plan for it but having a prepaid funeral plan in place could really help ease the emotional and financial burden on loved ones, at what will inevitably be a distressing time.
According to Sun Life Direct's annual Cost of Dying Report, the basic cost of a funeral in the UK has increased for the 10th year running with the key expenses associated with dying also soaring by as much as 80% since 2004.
Having risen faster than inflation the average cost of dying now stands at an incredible £7,622 - an increase of 7.1% on 2012.
This year's increase is down to rising third party costs - services such as burial fees, cremation fees, doctors' fees and ministers' fees, which are all costs outside of the funeral directors control.
The third party costs which relate to cremation and burial fees tend to be controlled by local authorities, with burial fees continuing to increase at a higher rate than cremation fees.
While your postcode affects how you live it also affects how you die with the average cost of a funeral varying significantly across the regions.
Unsurprisingly, London is home to the most expensive funeral at an astounding £9,556 while Wales is home to the least expensive funerals in the UK where it stands at £6,096.
With funeral costs currently rising at an alarming rate of 7 per cent per year, Britons are being urged to plan now to avoid growing inflation as increasing costs mean they could end up forking out up to £25,000 more in 30 years' time.
Death is one of the few certainties in life and must be addressed ahead of time so that plans can be made in advance. If you do, however, fail to plan ahead, the burden - both financially and in terms of actually making the funeral arrangements - could fall to your loved ones.
When there's no funeral plan in place, the cost of the service is usually paid out of the Estate of the deceased, but if the funds are insufficient then the executor (usually the next of kin), is often held personally liable.
If your family genuinely cannot afford to pay the cost of your funeral, they would have to go through the rigmarole of claiming financial assistance. If they do in fact meet certain eligibility criteria, the amount awarded would be (based on the average 2011/2012 award) about £1,241 which is only 16% of the total cost of a funeral today.
The death of a loved one is a difficult time and is only compounded by financial worries over how to pay for the funeral.
Nevertheless, having a funeral plan in place ensures that friends and family don't have to make such difficult decisions at a testing time in the grieving process, and it means you pay for your funeral at today's prices.
With a funeral plan from Golden Charter, you're guaranteed a reliable and trustworthy independent funeral director who will carry out your funeral with the utmost respect, care and professionalism.