Home Funeral

What is a Home Funeral?

A Home Funeral can mean many things and encompass various levels of interaction and ritual. At Undertaking LA we feel that the best way to express our vision of a Home Funeral is to describe this as more of a "Delayed Removal" rather than a full ceremony akin to the kind that are held at a typical funeral home.

This means that at Undertaking LA our main goal is to give you the comfort and security to know that you can legally keep the body at home for a few hours or even overnight. Then when our families are ready, they call us to take the body into our care.

If you are wanting something more in-depth, like a home visit to help with shrouding, and setting up for a home funeral service, a Death Doula is the best option, as this is their specialty and area of expertise, and we want to ensure that all our families needs are met.

We have two women we encourage you to call for Home Funeral services! Jill Schock who owns Death Doula LA, and Alua Arthur who owns Going with Grace.

What if I do not know when the death will occur?

We understand that the reality of death is that none of us really know when it will occur. However, if you are taking the time to read this, chances are you may be expecting a death within the next year to six months and may want some advice on what to do to prepare.

Here are a few things to remember once the death has occurred:

  • If you plan to shroud the body, buy your shroud now. Do not wait until the death has occurred. Click here to be taken to our shroud selection where you can purchase direct from our website and have one of our beautiful Bamboo shrouds shipped direct to your home in 4-5 business days. Please note that the Tru-Green Believer takes up to 11 days for shipment.

  • Close the eyes using something small and light like a bag of rice or beans

  • Close the mouth by rolling a towel under the chin or tying a scarf around the head and under the jaw.

  • Turn on the A/C. Keeping the home cool is essential.

  • Read our Home Funeral Manual our Director Amber Carvaly created by clicking here.

  • Download this Helpful Tips poster here to keep on hand if you find it useful.

  • Feel free to ask questions. Undertaking LA is here for you, we understand you may not know the right questions to ask but help us help you by engaging and describing what you have in mind. We may refer you to a Death Doula, if we do, we recommend calling them as we believe that they can be incredibly beneficial. They often can work on a sliding scale if money is a factor and can also offer useful insight.

  • Remember, a ‘good death’ and a ‘perfect death’ are vastly different ideas. Do not fall into the trap of creating the perfect death as this will ultimately lead to complicated grief. Death is not something we have the ability to control, we can only control how we react and how we make the best of out the situation we have been given.

What if I want to use your facility to shroud the body?

Undertaking LA is more than happy to have you shroud the body at our facility. Please know that there is a $300 charge for using our viewing room, a $90 an hour Director fee, plus a charge for bringing the body into our care. Undertaking LA provides all of the information you need to do this on your own so that you are able to save money where you can and while we cannot offer these services for free, we do our best to keep our prices at a reasonable cost.

Do you have any other resources I can check out?

Of course! We suggest visiting the National Home Funeral Alliance by clicking here for more information and help on DIY home funerals. The National Home Funeral Alliance can provide you more information on How to Care for the Body, Cooling Techniques, Healthy and Safety, plus more!