Can You Rent a Casket for a Funeral? With Tips and Prices

The average casket will cost you anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000, with the highest costing over $10,000. With these high prices, affording a casket can be out of reach for many people who have lost their loved ones. So, families may need to consider other options when burying their loved ones. 

You can rent a casket for a funeral. Not only will it save you money, but your loved one’s body will not touch the reused casket. Your loved one will lay in a wooden box placed inside of the casket. The funeral director will then remove them from the casket before burial. 

Let’s talk more about renting a casket and how you can rent one for your loved one. 

How Do You Rent a Casket for a Funeral?

You can rent a casket for a funeral by communicating to the funeral director that you want to rent instead of buying. The funeral director will have several renting options for you to choose from.

The first thing you should do when considering renting a casket is to put together a budget. We’ll talk more specifically about prices later, but you must consider what type of budget you have to work with. 

When you set your budget for the casket, ensure that you consider the other costs of planning a funeral as well. The casket may be the most expensive part of the funeral process but you will also need to pay to hold the service. 

Along with these costs, there will be a charge for the funeral director and embalming the body of your loved one. 

So, before you start to consider renting a casket, get your budget together first. Then, you’ll have an idea of what you are working with and the type of casket to consider. 

Who To Talk to About Renting a Casket

To get started in the renting process, you will want to talk to the funeral director. They can help you find affordable caskets available to rent. This will not only save you money, but it also saves the funeral home money. So, it’s beneficial for both parties. 

Speak to the funeral director about the potential cost, and don’t think that this is a weird request. 

Renting caskets is more common than people think, and it is a cheap, economical way to bury your loved one. There is no shame in asking, and the funeral director should help you find something without hesitation. 

What To Do After Choosing a Casket

Once you choose the right rental casket for your loved one, the funeral home will take it from there. The funeral home will treat your loved one with the same amount of respect as any other body that passes through. 

They will place your loved one in a wooden box, which they then place inside the rental casket. So, the body of your loved one will never come in contact with the reused part of the casket. The same applies to every body placed in a reusable casket. 

This video clearly shows how a rental casket works:

Once the funeral services have ended, the funeral home will then remove the box holding your loved one from the coffin. Your loved one will be buried or cremated in the wooden box that the funeral director from the coffin, and this is where they will rest. 

As for the casket, the funeral director will inspect it to ensure there was no contamination or damage. Barring any issues with the casket, the funeral director will have it cleaned and ready to reuse by another family. 

How Much Does Renting a Casket Cost?

Renting a casket will cost you on average $700 to $1,250. However, this depends on the type you choose and where you get it from. You can get more expensive caskets for rent but those are specialty caskets, which are rare and will cost you a lot more. 

Choosing to rent a casket can save you a lot of money. We talked about the average casket costs above. Based on the average cost of renting a casket, you can save more than half the cost of a casket by renting. 

When you pay for renting a casket, you are mostly paying for the cleaning and preparation that takes place before and after your loved one is placed in it. If $700 is still a little too much, you can look for other, cheaper options. You may have to do some shopping around to find the cheaper ones, but they are out there. 

This may be the only reasonable option for some, as they may not have the money to buy a casket. For others, it can allow you to allocate money elsewhere during this difficult time. 

Instead of paying for a casket, maybe you can put that money toward a family gathering in their name or a donation to a charity. 

Wooden casket made of Cherry in a funeral home.

What Are the Requirements for Renting a Casket?

Consumers do not have to meet any requirements to rent a casket, but the funeral home does. The casket must be cleaned thoroughly and disposed of if there are any stains. The funeral home must also notify the family in writing that they may have used the casket previously. 

Regulations for renting a casket fall on the funeral home rather than the deceased’s family. It is the funeral director’s responsibility to ensure that the casket is thoroughly cleaned and not contaminated in any way. They are responsible for this before you use it and after removing your loved one. 

If there has been any contamination in the use of the casket, then the funeral director can no longer use it. This is a legal requirement used to prevent criminal practices in funeral homes that reuse caskets. 

Once a person dies, their body will begin the decomposition process. Even after embalming, the body is still breaking down constantly. It is common for a dead body to leak fluids as their organs begin to break down. This can cause the casket to become stained. If this happens, the funeral director must get rid of the casket. They can’t reuse it after contamination occurs. 

This is why bodies are placed carefully in wooden boxes that hold them rather than just sitting in a reusable casket. This prevents a lot of possible damage from happening while the body rests there during a funeral service. 

Finally, the funeral homes must notify the deceased’s family in writing that they may have used the casket previously. This prevents the funeral home from reusing caskets without the knowledge of the family. It also helps the family understand that renting caskets usually means that another family used it previously. 

Why Should I Rent a Casket for My Loved One?

You should rent a casket for your loved one if you want to save money and be environmentally friendly. Renting a casket also allows families to hold funeral services for loved ones they will cremate. 

As discussed above, we know that renting a casket can save a family money. Whether you are struggling or just would rather allocate money elsewhere during a hard time, renting a casket is a great option. But that’s not the only reason to consider it. 

Renting a Casket Is Good for the Environment

Renting a casket for a funeral can be good for the environment. You can choose a casket made of metal, wood, or other valuable materials. People would be able to use these materials for more practical purposes rather than being buried with your loved one. 

Rather than using these resources just to bury them in the ground, you can choose to rent and reuse a casket. This allows other families to reuse those valuable materials in the future and not just place them in the ground. 

The most environmentally friendly way to bury your loved one is to allow them to decompose in nature and supply nutrients back to the earth. While they are sealed tightly in a coffin, they will not be able to do this. So, if you want the most environmentally-conscious option, consider a more natural burial. 

Renting a Casket Is an Excellent Option for Cremation

Finally, rented caskets allow families to hold a funeral service for their loved ones before cremating them. If preferred, the family can rent a casket, hold a funeral service for their loved one, then have them cremated. This allows the family to say goodbye before the cremation takes place. 

Renting a casket can help those families save money by using the casket for a short time and returning it for other families to use. Then, your loved one will be cremated and returned to you. This allows family members to see their loved one for the last time. It is a more reasonable option than paying for a casket only to have them cremated inside of it. 

Tips for Renting a Casket

There are several tips you can follow when renting a casket. These include asking questions, discussing legalities, and shopping around. It’s also essential that, before using the casket, you make sure to inspect it for any potential damage. 

I’ll discuss more on these tips below.

Ask Questions

Like any other big purchase, you may be nervous when choosing a casket for your loved one. So, don’t be afraid to ask questions during this time. The funeral director will help answer any concerns that you have about renting caskets, prices, and policies they have to follow. 

Discuss Legalities

Make sure that the funeral director is following all necessary legal requirements. Ensure that you receive a notice in writing that another family may have used the casket previously. Also, feel free to ask the funeral director what legal requirements they follow when it comes to renting caskets. Their answer will tell you how familiar they are with the law. 

Shop Around

When you are shopping around for a rental casket, it is important to know that the funeral home will only show you what they have available. Not every funeral home will offer the same rental caskets, so, if you’re looking for a specific type of casket, then it’s best to shop around a bit. 

This is also relevant after you find a casket that you like. It’s also essential to look at different funeral homes, as some funeral homes may offer the same casket or something similar for a lower price. 

So, make sure you check around at other places even if you find something you really like. 

Inspect the Casket First

Once you choose the casket you want for your loved one, then make sure you inspect the casket in person. This will help ensure that the funeral home follows all necessary legal protocols. Check the casket for any stains or discoloration in any areas. Remember, funeral directors are responsible for disposing of any caskets that have stains caused by bodies. 

Also, use this time to check for any dents or other imperfections on the casket. Just because you are renting the casket doesn’t mean it should have any dents or markings. Therefore, check carefully for anything that seems strange or out of place on the casket. 

Bring it up to the funeral director right away if you find anything. They may have missed it on their inspection, or they may have damaged it during transportation. Either way, bring it to their attention and see how they are willing to handle it for you. 

If they aren’t willing to help or compromise, then you may want to consider taking your business elsewhere. 

Final Thoughts

You can rent a casket for the funeral of your loved one, and it’s a great way to save money during a tough time. This is excellent for people who will cremate their loved ones as it allows the family to say goodbye during a funeral service. 

The funeral director will then ensure that another family can use the casket without wasting it. So, it’s a good idea to consider renting a casket to save money and be environmentally conscious. 


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Alex Noel

Hi there! I'm Alex Noel and live in Indianapolis, Indiana. I started this website to share my experience. My goal is to provide Americans a more fulfilling goodbye.

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