10 things we spend too much on

All too often, we buy things we think we’re supposed to, and whenever there’s an emotional component involved, our tendency to overspend is enhanced even more. Think funerals, weddings, and engagement rings, just for starters.
Read on for more examples of traditional purchases people routinely spend too much on and solid suggestions for cutting those costs.

1. Funerals
The worst time to shop for a funeral is after a loved one dies, when grief can affect judgment. That suggests this is a purchase you should arrange yourself long before your demise. According to the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA), Americans paid an average of $7,075 for a funeral in 2012, and that doesn’t include a burial plot, marker or stone, flowers, and obituary.
Here’s how to significantly reduce that cost:
Consult the government. The Federal Trade Commission regulates “funeral providers.” In its article, “Shopping for Funeral Services,” the FTC lists the rules providers must follow, plus some excellent advice, including:
“The law requires funeral homes to give you written price lists.”
“You have the right to buy goods and services separately.”
Shop around. Because the law allows you to BYOC (bring your own casket), shop around. Where? Try Costco. While the NFDA says a casket averages $2,295, you can get a beautiful Costco casket for $950—delivery included. But there are many other discount options online.
Get cremated. More Americans are opting for ashes. In 1960, only 3.6 percent did, but that figure rose to 42 percent by 2011, says the NFDA. The Neptune Society, one of the largest cremation services, says its costs vary by “local market factors” but insists it’s “a fraction” of burial costs.

2. Weddings
Who doesn’t enjoy reading about “The 12 Most Expensive Weddings in History”? Number one is Princess Diana’s wedding ($110 million adjusted for inflation). While the average American wedding costs a fraction of that, it’s still $28,427, according to a survey by wedding webs…

Read the full story on The Village Family Magazine website …

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