Even if you’ve never had to plan a funeral for a loved one, you probably already know that end-of-life costs are high. You may have heard that cremation is more affordable than burial, which may cause you to lean toward this method of disposition for yourself or your loved one.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- Average Cost of Cremation in Kentucky
- Popular Crematories in Kentucky
- Charities, Nonprofits or Government Programs That Help With Cremation Costs in Kentucky
However, before you purchase a cremation package, do a bit of research. Understand the different types of cremation packages and talk the decision over with others involved.
If you are looking for a cremation package in Kentucky, we’d like to help. Here’s what we uncovered about the average cost of cremation in Kentucky.
Average Cost of Cremation in Kentucky
Cremation package prices vary a lot based on the type of service you are seeking. On average, the cost of cremation may range from $700 to several thousand dollars.
Before discussing the specific costs, you need to learn more about the options many funeral homes and cremation providers offer to families. These options have nothing to do with the cremation process itself. All human cremation in America is completed one body at a time. Instead, the different “types” of cremation refer to the end-of-life service options.
Each cremation provider or funeral home will have its own unique name for a “traditional” cremation. Perhaps a better name for this type of cremation would be a “traditional service followed by cremation.”
In traditional cremation, the body is removed from the place of death to the funeral home. There, the body is embalmed, cleaned, dressed, and placed inside a casket. (Many funeral homes allow family members to rent the casket for the viewing.)
Friends and family gather to view the body, comfort one another, and share memories at a service typically called a wake or visitation.
The wake, visitation, or viewing may be followed by a traditional funeral, which can be scheduled on the same day as the visitation or the following day. Families can choose to have the casketed body present at one service or both services.
Once the services are held, the body will be cremated. The cremated remains will be returned to the family days later.
There are many options to consider when finding a permanent resting place for cremains. While scattering is undoubtedly a popular choice, the cremated remains can also be buried in a cemetery plot with a headstone or interred in a columbarium niche or mausoleum. A small portion can also be used to create cremation diamonds or pressed into a vinyl record. Still, others decide to keep their loved one’s cremated remains in an urn at home.
Even though many people say that cremation is the most economical end-of-life option, they may not be referring to this option. Traditional cremation may cost the same or more than a traditional burial, especially if you choose to bury the cremated remains in a cemetery plot with a headstone.
However, if you are looking for a more economical method of disposition, you might consider direct cremation.
“Direct cremation” typically is the name that cremation providers use for their least expensive cremation package. Therefore, when you read about the price differences between cremation vs. burial, the cremation price typically refers to direct cremation.
In direct cremation, the family says their final goodbyes to the deceased at the place of death or the cremation center. Once the body is cremated, the family will receive the cremated remains of the deceased days later.
Direct cremation is usually a low-cost option because the price usually doesn’t include any service for the deceased. This doesn’t mean that you can’t have a funeral for your loved one. It simply means that the costs for the services aren’t typically part of a direct cremation package.
Some families still have a funeral at their religious institution, home, or public place, which you can utilize for free (or at a low cost). Others may pay to use a chapel at a funeral home or other type of venue.
Popular Crematories in Kentucky
There are a lot of options for cremation providers in Kentucky. The lowest-cost option typically comes from companies that specialize in direct cremation. However, your local funeral home may have a direct cremation package available too.
Cremation Center of Kentucky
Cremation Center of Kentucky is located in Louisville, Kentucky. Currently, direct cremation with this company costs $1,160. This provider offers traditional cremation and burial as well.
Cremation Center of Kentucky doesn’t have a service area listed on the website. However, there is a per-mile charge to transfer the body to the facility.
Legacy Cremation Services
Legacy Cremation Services is a multi-state, family-owned, and operated cremation provider with facilities in Fayette, Lexington, and Louisville. The direct cremation package offered by this company starts at $695.
Care Cremation and Funeral Service
Care Cremation and Funeral Service is located in Lexington, Kentucky. The service area for this company is within 50 miles of the facility. This full-service funeral home has a chapel available for use. Cremation costs range from $995 to $4,995.
Lindsey Funeral Home and Cremation Service
Located in Paducah, Kentucky, Lindsey Funeral Home and Cremation Service is a full-service funeral home with cremation services starting at $1,595. In addition, the company offers pre-planning services and will publish your loved one’s obituary on the website.
Charities, Nonprofits or Government Programs That Help With Cremation Costs in Kentucky
A few national and state organizations might be able to help you with the cremation costs of your loved one. Many of these organizations were developed to help families who have lost children and have no resources or insurance to cover the cost of a funeral. There also may be government assistance available to families who have lost loved ones due to COVID-19.
Here’s a list of resources that might be of service to your family.
Social Security Administration
Although it’s not much, the Social Security Administration can pay a one-time payment of $255 to the surviving spouse if they lived with the deceased when the death occurred. This money, of course, can be used to go toward cremation expenses or other end-of-life costs.
Consult this website for more information about the benefits you may be entitled to from the Social Security Administration.
Children’s Burial Assistance
Although this organization is headquartered in Georgia, this nonprofit group provides donated burial plots throughout the United States (wherever plots are available). The organization may also assist with other expenses, including cremation expenses or the cost of opening and closing a grave for burial.
Final Farewell is another child-focused organization that helps families plan an affordable funeral for a child. The headquarters of this organization is located in Pennsylvania. This organization’s funding comes from fundraising campaigns, government grants, and individual solicitations.
Science Care is an organization that helps individuals who wish to donate their bodies upon their death to be used for scientific research. Please understand that not every person will qualify for donation, but there is no upper age limit. If you are eligible, this program will pay for the cost of the transportation from the location of passing to the research facility, the cost of the cremation, and the return of cremated remains.
Not only would the families of the deceased benefit from not having to pay for the cremation process, but society could also benefit from the research.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
If your loved one served in the U.S. Military, they could be eligible for a burial or cremation allowance from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Many funeral homes and cremation centers staff assist families with obtaining these benefits. You may need to provide your loved one’s military discharge papers to receive this benefit.
County-level organizations and government resources
Kentucky doesn’t offer state-wide assistance to families who can’t afford to pay for cremation expenses. However, help may be available at the county level. If available, the amount of assistance typically is not more than $1,000.
Local religious organizations
Some churches and religious groups may offer assistance with cremation costs.
Create an End-of-Life Plan
If you know that you wish to be cremated, make sure you create an end-of-life plan and share it with your family. This is one of the greatest gifts you can leave behind for your next of kin. However, you might ask your family’s opinion before you pay for any services.
Consider the needs of your family before you purchase a direct cremation package. For example, your family may feel the need to have an open-casket visitation before the cremation. This means you should choose a cremation company that offers “traditional” cremation services.
On the other hand, if your family feels comfortable saying their goodbyes to you in another fashion, direct cremation may be suitable for your situation.
Even though everyone should have a say in what happens to their bodies after they die, the funeral services that follow are for the family and close friends. Consider their needs and your preferences when making end-of-life plans.
If you're a Kentucky resident and ready to start preparing your own end-of-life planning documents, Cake has Advance Care Planning forms you can download. To help ease your planning, we have all the documents you need in one place.