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The hype over a "Pre-Need" Headstone.

Updated: Nov 4, 2023


What is a pre-need headstone?

It is simply the monument of your choice designed, crafted, and set at the cemetery plot of your future final physical resting place, prior to you "needing" it.

Why the sudden rush to purchase a pre-need headstone?

I don't know if I would go as far as to say "rush" out to buy. Shopping for a headstone isn't exactly anyone's top five ways to spend a Saturday. However, the act of purchasing a pre-need monument is certainly becoming a common practice.

Boomers are rather set in their ways.

I may or may not be of the opinion Baby Boomers are quite set in their ways. Hardheaded, if you will. They want what they want. In order to insure they get what they want, is to get it themselves. Being one of the leading reasons customers are pre-purchasing a headstones.

Refuse to place burden on their children

Looking out for us kiddos. Yet another thing boomers are good at. The majority of Pre-Need purchasers mention time after time, "I just don't want my children to have to deal with this."

The paragraph below may help you understand what is meant by, "deal with it". The monument purchasing process is thorough and lengthy. It is not something you want your children to have to tackle. Particularly at an emotionally fragile time in their lives.

Average number of interactions:

Average number of times we meet with a customer prior to a headstone being set?


Average number of times we speak with a customer prior to stone being set?


Average number of specific questions we have to ask each customer prior to processing their headstone order?


Average number of times a client will change their mind regarding:

Color? Two

Wording? Five

Scene or photo? Three

Average number of various a stones a client looks at online prior to ordering?


Average number of cemetery site assessments with client?


It is easy to see, one simply doesn't run and grab a monument in a day.

Save Their Spot

I've only had one, but the fact remains, I did have one customer purchase a Pre-Need Monument for the purpose of "saving their spot". That is right, I am talking about their cemetery plot spot.

It is a stretch, but I suppose it is something to think about. After all, it occurs much more than any of us would like to think. In fact, it recently happened to a friend of mine. The day before her mother's funeral and graveside ceremony, the family was informed there was someone else buried in her mom's plot. Resulting in her mom's funeral being postponed, an exhumation, and two burials. A process emotionally taxing on both families.

I will say setting that Pre-Need Monument deters any kind of unnecessary dirt work.

Save $

Let's say you are 55 years old.

You have every intention of being alive until you are 85.

The Pre-Need stone you purchase at 55 cost $5,500.

Waiting until you are 70 years old to make the purchase for exact same stone will cost between 9-11 thousand dollars.

Not addressing it at all and letting your family purchase the stone after you pass away at the age of 86, will cost them over $13,000 for the exact same headstone.

The math is found by factoring the rise in cost of labor, price of the actual material/product, increasing production cost, fuel increases, increasing shipping charges over the next 15-20 years. The granite industry pricing is weighted more than most on supply and demand. Things like the large population of Baby Boomer's passing daily, covid, and the covid vaccine result in a certain demand increase across the industry.

I think it is safe to say, if you are determined you will find cheaper monuments in the future, you are dead wrong. No pun intended.

Headstone's Are A Tangible Comfort

A headstone serves as the only tangible memory connected directly to a loved one. It is incredibly hard to visit a fresh grave. An obstacle made even more difficult when there is no marker or stone at the gravesite. With the minimal wait of a newly purchased headstone being 12-28 months, it can make visits dauting. Not to mention, there is just something about seeing a name set in stone that offers a sliver of closure.

The purchase of a Pre-Need stone simply eliminates many stressors.

Pre-Need Stones are also the only stones you will ever see discounts or cash back applied to. There have actually been a limited number of coupons sent in honor of Oxford Monument Company's Grand Opening that offer a $750 savings.

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