How to Open a Funeral Home

Here is a guide on how to open a funeral home.

Death is inevitable in human existence. According to reports, about 150,000 people die every day. When a loved one passes away, funerals are often held to offer people the chance to say goodbye.

Now, a funeral home plays a critical role in providing families of the deceased with much-needed closure. They handle everything from burial to memorial service.

Knowing that people won’t stop exiting from the earth, you can launch a burial home and make a decent income. However, opening a venture like this is physically and mentally tasking.

You’ll need to understand what you’re getting into from a business perspective. If you’re wondering how to get started, read this article until the end. We’ll tell you how to open a funeral home.

How to Start and Run a Funeral Home

How much money do you make owning a funeral home?

Starting any business requires adequate planning and abiding by regulatory frameworks guiding its operations. You must also develop effective marketing strategies for selling your products and services.

This can make the whole business process challenging, especially for persons with limited knowledge of what it takes to create. The same applies to creating a funeral home.

Here you need to have had previous experience in providing mortuary services. This line of business also requires empathy and efficient customer service skills.

Different faiths have their unique burial rites/rituals. Thus it is necessary to have an understanding of each demand. This article will reveal information to help you start your funeral home business.

It will focus on the most basic requirements you cannot do without.

In the end, you will have gained knowledge of the procedures involved and how to commence business.

Carry Out a Survey/Research on the Funeral Industry

A survey of the industry tests to see if there is an actual demand for funeral home services in a particular area or chosen location.

This helps in selecting a suitable location for the business too. The study also lets you determine how many resources (financial) are required for the project.

It also helps the business to measure if the market is over-saturated by stronger competitors, as well as reveal if there will be potential setbacks in trademark registrations and several other legal hurdles relevant to establishing your business.


Get a Suitable Business Location

Where your enterprise is situated counts significantly in its success.

You must look for a convenient and accessible location, such as a busy street or residential area. Establishing a funeral home in an isolated place is a bad idea for safety concerns, among other factors.

Furthermore, you should consider the size of your property when finding an excellent location. In addition to that, assess the local regulations and zoning laws to ensure compliance.

Consider the proximity to cemeteries, crematoriums, and other related facilities. This may increase your level of patronage.

Until then, the location of your burial home may impact taxes, legal requirements, and revenue. Most people often register their enterprises in the state.

But if you intend to expand your venture, consider going elsewhere. Some states may offer you real advantages when it comes to burial homes.

Getting a Space

This is where you will run all the services your funeral home provides.

These may include areas for cremation services, rooms for holding funeral services, a space for selling caskets which may also double as a casket showroom, refrigerators for the mortuary, and one for preparing the body for the funeral.

To provide all the services mentioned above, adequate space is necessary.

Purchase Necessary Equipment

After you’ve got a thriving location, the following agenda is to acquire the needed equipment. To launch a burial home, you’ll need many supplies and equipment.

They include auto flags, chapel, selection room equipment and furnishings, prep room, and caskets. You may also require removal tools, transportation supplies, emergency pouches, body bags, etc.

Providing a General Price List

This is short for the GPL and a stipulated requirement by the Federal Trade Commission for all funeral home service providers.

It requires all funeral home service owners to prepare a comprehensive General Price List of all services provided so clients can quickly go through and clearly understand services they may or may not need.

These services may include but are not limited to transporting the body for burial, and embalming fees, among similar services. All information provided in your GPL must be evident and specific.

This should include what your clients are expected to pay for.

Applying for Licensing

This is part of the basic requirements for starting your funeral home business. Having primary education (college education) in mortuary science is required for directors of funeral homes.

The American Board of Funeral Service Education also demands an associate degree in funeral service education.

You must take a state board exam to obtain a funeral home license in most states. There are provisions for an apprenticeship. However, the apprentice would have to learn from a licensed funeral director.

After learning is complete, a licensing exam is written.

Hiring Your Workforce

This line of business requires specialized knowledge in handling embalming, creating, and body preparation tasks.

Because you cannot do all these alone, you need capable hands to help provide these services. In addition, the general administrative structure of your business will require hiring the right hands for the job.

Doing the Necessary Paperwork

Owning a funeral home entails a lot of responsibilities. Some of these include sorting out insurance issues with several insurance providers.

Knowing funeral insurance will be of immense benefit here.

Other equally necessary paperwork you must attend to include death registrations, following due cremation protocols, and sorting out purchasing issues for graves needed for burials.

Register for Taxes

You’ll need to register a variety of state and federal taxes before launching a funeral home. To sign up for taxes, you must apply for EIN online, by mail, or by fax. The procedure is easy and free.

You can click on this website for your EIN

And this site to learn more about taxes.

Get Insurance For a Funeral Home

You must also sign your venture with a reliable insurance scheme or company. It will minimize your financial losses and increase the credibility of your business.

Moreover, it will protect your burial home from potentially ruinous situations, manage your company’s risks, and more.

Create an Enterprise Account

Every business must have a reliable bank account, including funeral homes. That’s the channel you’ll use to receive payment from clients without cash.

You can set up a credit card processing. That way, you can accept credit cards as a form of payment. Moreover, a business account will assist you in keeping track of your monetary transactions.

Having a Business Plan

Writing your business plan is one of the most essential requirements for starting a funeral home.

Suppose you don’t have the necessary knowledge. In that case, you should seek competent help to write a good business plan that reflects the realities of the business and contains definite targets the company is expected to attain within a specified period.

It is important also to state here that full implementation of the contents of your business plan is necessary if you wish to obtain desired results.

Having a Marketing Strategy

Many funeral home service providers have become household names by building a plan reputed for excellence.

To stand a chance of competing, you need an effective marketing plan with definite strategies that will help your business attract the much-desired patronage necessary for success.


Opening a funeral home isn’t an easy task. As you can see above, it involves several steps to succeed. Besides being tedious, setting up such a venture like this can be costly.

You can spend anywhere from $150,000 to $300,000 for a median burial home. For a standard home, it will cost more than this amount. So ensure your pocket is up to the task before making a move.

Starting a funeral home requires many logistic issues to be worked out. Passion is essential if you must make appreciable headway in the business.

This primary factor will keep you focused during trying and challenging times.

Because your clients will be grieving for their loved ones, you need to be able to act as emotional support during this period by ensuring the services provided by you are aimed a soothing their grief.