Compare Cremation Costs to Burial Costs


With cemetery property in short supply, the cost of burial continues to rise. Most people are aware that they must purchase a cemetery plot, but are not aware of ancillary charges.

Burial costs include:

  • Cost of a cemetery plot
  • Cost of a casket
  • A burial liner
  • Cost of opening the grave
  • Cost of a headstone or grave marker
  • The cost of property maintenance

Based on burial costs starting at $5,000 and rising markedly from there, many individuals and families look for alternatives to burial, most notably cremation. The cost of cremation is substantially less than the cost of burial.

Not only is cremation often available for $1,000 to $2,000, cremation eliminates or minimizes most ancillary costs. For example, cremation can be performed with a simple inexpensive cardboard cremation container rather than a casket. Following cremation, ashes may be returned to the family in a simple box or in a cremation urn or container of the family's choice. Most cremation urns fall in the $100 to $400 price range, a modest costs.

Cremation costs include:

  • Cost of cremation
  • Cost of a cremation container
  • Optional cremation urn

Cremation entirely eliminates charges for a cemetery plot, burial liner, opening a grave, and property maintenance. Families may still choose a cremation memorial, but choices are varied, so families can select something within their budgets. A cremation memorial may even be created at a later time rather than times to services.

There are many reasons to choose cremation, including limiting one's final footprint. On a cost basis, cremation is a low cost alternative to burial.

January 18, 2013

By Karen Parker