Selling a burial plot is an option if you have no intention of using it in the future. If you’ve made some preparation in the past, but life changes such as relocations, family disputes, divorce, or changes in your finances can make a previously purchased cemetery plot undesirable.
Changes in preference from burial to cremation also play a role in selling a burial insurance plot. More and more people are choosing cremation with an average cost of $1,650 compared with traditional funeral costing around $8,400.
The growing popularity of cremation as a substitute for burial makes people realize that they do not need their previously purchased burial plots.
Relocation means people no longer live near the family plot and would rather sell it.
You also may have inherited an unwanted plot that no longer suits your needs, and you don’t intend to use it.
Or perhaps, you like to free up some investment you’ve made in your burial arrangement for current financial needs.
Whatever the reason, selling a burial plot is an important decision you need to make.
FOR EASIER NAVIGATION:
- Things To Do Before Selling A Burial Plot
- Selling A Burial Plot
- Buying A Burial Plot
- Precautionary Measures When Buying And Selling Cemetery Plots
- Additional Questions & Answers About Buying A Burial Plot
THINGS TO DO BEFORE SELLING A BURIAL PLOT
If you wanted to sell your burial plot, there are some things to plan before making a sale.
1. Consult with your family. If you’re planning to sell your burial plot, ask your spouse, children, or other loved ones. Are they okay with your decision to sell?
A married couple should be in agreement to sell a double plot designed to hold the remains of two people. Check with your family if selling a burial plot is legal – a spouse, a sibling, or next of kin may hold the joint right to it.
2. Check the state’s laws. The laws regarding burial plot sale or transfer may differ from one state to another. Burial plot brokerages are often unregulated in the U.S. However, some state comptroller’s offices regulate cemeteries and the transfer of burial plots.
Some states require burial plot sellers to offer the plot back to the cemetery before selling the burial plot to others. Check online to see the laws in your area regarding the sale of a burial plot.
3. Know your cemetery’s status. Check the perpetual contract with the cemetery. Check if your cemetery will honor the private sale of plots because some states require the seller to sell back to the cemetery.
Some states only allow the cemetery to sell or transfer rights. However, cemeteries owned by religious organizations are not governed by such law.
Confirm with the cemetery if they will honor the transfer of ownership. They may have the right to buy back, but they will do it at the original price.
4. Check the market values. Burial plot values fluctuate just like residential and commercial properties. They determine the cemetery plot value by the current real estate values of the place your cemetery is located.
5. Search for burial plots advertisements in your area online. Check to see if there are some existing advertisements. Check the dates of the ads to determine the turnaround time or how fast a burial plot can sell in your area.
Burial plots sell the fastest in places where people tend to retire. Common retirement destinations in the U.S. are Arizona, California, Florida, and Texas.
6. Know who manages the cemetery. Identify the cemetery manager who is in charge of the transaction and arrangements for burial plots in the cemetery. Check the cemetery website or directory for contact information. The cemetery website may indicate who the manager is.
If you cannot get this information on their website, you can visit the cemetery’s main office in person.
Ask the cemetery manager if they offer buyback. They may not be obligated to do a buyback. However, many cemeteries have this option for unused burial plots.
If they do offer buyback, you can complete the transaction with the cemetery manager. They will determine how much the burial plot will cost if sold to a new buyer, and they will give you an offer to buy.
SELLING A BURIAL PLOT
Burial plots are major pieces of real estate you can buy ahead of time to save money and sell it at a later date to earn some cash. Learning how to sell a burial plot can ensure you can quickly sell it just like anything.
Advertise your burial plot on websites that exclusively list burial plots for sale. Plot Brokers and Grave Solutions are some of them. You can list the type of cemetery property you want to sell, such as grave plots, crypts, or mausoleums.
Craigslist and other online classified sites are also an excellent way to let potential buyers know that your burial plot is up for sale.
Be specific when publishing an ad. Describe the location, cemetery, section, lot or block, and the space number. Also, describe the neighborhood and the plot dimension just as you would when advertising for an apartment.
You can also include the asking price in the listing. Provide the address of your burial plot so it can be mapped for potential buyers.
Take a photo of the burial plot. Attach this photo, if possible, to give the buyer a visual idea of the burial plot you are selling. Photos can be an essential factor in a buyer’s decision. People are more likely to buy something they can see.
Many burial plot registries feature descriptions with photographs so that prospective buyers can get a better understanding of the burial plot before they decide to buy it.
By advertising to cemetery registries, you’ll gain the exposure you need. Ads are usually placed in the registries free of charge. A well-placed advertisement will attract the attention of an interested buyer.
You can also work with brokerage services; it is more advantageous since they take the work of selling your burial plot. Cemetery plot brokers may either charge a monthly advertising fee or subtract a percentage on the final transaction, or a combination of both.
CLOSING THE SALE
Close the deal, but stay on top of the deal.
Stay close with the cemetery representatives when you’re finalizing the sale. They will issue you the proper paperwork or the legal documents that the seller and buyer will sign in transferring ownership of the plot to the buyer.
The cemetery will issue burial rights to the new owner. They will also inform you if there are any closing fees that range from $15 to over $100. Ask about the closing fees upfront.
Occasionally, the buyer may need your plot immediately. You can accelerate the process by taking care of the paperwork before you sell it.
Contact the cemetery manager where your burial plot is located to inform the office of your intention to sell. The cemetery manager will be able to guide you through the transfer requirements process and provide you with a change of ownership forms before you make a sale.
Complete the necessary paperwork for the transfer of ownership. It’s best to bring a lawyer to help with the process because there will be a difference in laws from one state to another. Different states have different requirements.
The paperwork should specify the location of the burial plot and the clean transfer of ownership. Also, secure the signature of the cemetery manager so that the buyer will feel comfortable with the purchase he is making.
Exchanging the title and payment should be a private matter between you and the buyer. You can also use the help of a third-party service or brokerage to assist you in finalizing the sale.
BUYING A BURIAL PLOT
Buying a burial plot and reserving a burial plot in advance, years before you need it can be cheaper for you and your family compared to purchasing a burial plot at the last minute.
Don’t be turned off if you see the term “used” or “pre-owned” burial plots in the advertisements. A pre-owned burial plot has never been used for burial before. Generally, it’s only been purchased before as a part of someone’s pre-funeral planning arrangements that have been changed.
A burial plot for sale doesn’t mean its original owner is financially struggling. Sometimes they sell it because they are moving and prefer a cemetery near their new home state.
If you’re interested in buying a burial plot, there are some things to plan out before investing in a burial plot. The burial plot is an asset. Though a little expensive to buy, many desirable burial plots appreciate in value and can profit the buyer looking for a return on investment.
PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES WHEN BUYING AND SELLING CEMETERY PLOTS
Buying a Burial Plot
Before buying or selling burial lots on the secondary market, you need to take some precautionary measures so that you will not be scammed.
Before buying a burial lot, first, make sure that the seller is the owner on the record with the cemetery. If she inherited the property from a relative but neglected to inform the cemetery, she won’t be able to transfer the ownership until the inheritance issue is straightened out.
When buying a burial plot, don’t forget to ask what’s included in the price. Some only sell the plot itself, while others include ancillary costs, such as the headstone and burial.
Check with the seller what exactly you are paying for. Some seller is only selling the rights to the land, and the buyer needs to pay for in-ground crypts that may cost an additional $2,300, as well as other fees.
Selling a Burial Plot
When selling burial plots, check with the cemetery first about the rules for selling burial plots and the needed paperwork. Some cemetery requires buyback, but some will allow the burial plot owners to sell their burial plots on the secondary market.
When advertising to sell your burial plot, be wary of those third-party services that require large upfront fees. Burial plot sellers can expect to wait a few months or years before the burial plot sells, so don’t go with a service that charges monthly or annually.
Be careful with the information you share online. Some unscrupulous people may try to take advantage of your personal information posted online. Before providing your personal information in online ads, carefully consider your options.
When you list your burial plot with a plot broker or classified list on the internet, you will be asked to provide your name, telephone number, and email address in the listing. This personal information will be displayed on the internet for everyone to see. There are some steps you can do to protect your personal information.
For example, instead of giving your personal email address that you use for your communications, you can set up a separate email address just for the burial plot advertisement. Also, if you have a business and business telephone number, it may be preferable to give it out than your name and home phone number.
If anyone contacts you about your burial plot listing, be cautious about providing personal information. Some people may try to get information about your family that they will use for illegal purposes.
If you suspect that a prospective buyer is trying to commit wrongdoing, contact the plot broker and let them know of your concerns.
Follow the guidelines offered by the plot brokers or third-party service to ensure you sell your burial plot to the qualified buyer and receive the price agreed upon. If you have an estate planning lawyer, ask your lawyer to review all the pertinent documentation related to the transaction.
Internet fraudsters or unscrupulous people may try to engage you in a fraudulent transaction to commit a scam that could cost you a lot of money.
Be cautious about any documents you sign for the sale of your burial plot. Verify that you have received the full payment for your burial plot before you transfer the ownership.
Selling and buying a burial plot benefits both the seller and the buyer. The seller earns a profit from a valuable asset, and the buyer acquired a parcel of a lot that will appreciate in value over time.
HOW CAN FUNERAL FUNDS HELP ME?
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We work with many A+ rated insurance carriers that specialized in covering high-risk clients like you. We will search all those companies to get the best rate. We will match you up with the best burial insurance company that gives the best rate.
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Fill out our quote form on this page or call us at 888) 862-9456 and we can give you an accurate quote.
ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS & ANSWERS ABOUT BUYING A BURIAL PLOT
Is it a good idea to buy a burial plot?
Yes, it is always a good idea to buy a burial plot in advance even if you are not planning your funeral. A burial plot is a piece of real estate that goes up in pricing and buying a burial plot today can save you money.
When should I buy a burial plot?
It is always a good idea to buy a burial plot in advance. However, if you are planning a funeral for a loved one, the best time to buy a burial plot is when you are arranging the funeral.
Do you lease a burial plot?
When you buy a burial plot, you own the right to use the land for whatever burial-related purpose you want. You have the right to lease it if you wanted to.
How do you buy a burial plot?
You can buy a burial plot through your funeral director or cemetery manager. You can also check burial plot advertisements in your area for burial plot availability.
How does grave ownership work?
The burial plot owner registered in the deed has the right to be buried or gives permission to anybody to be buried on their burial plot. Only the person on the deed can be placed on the grave or give permission for the burial plot to be used. If you buy a burial plot the deed should be transferred to your name.
How much does it cost to buy a grave plot?
The average cost of a burial plot for a casket is around $525 to $5,000. The average cost of a burial plot for cremated remains in urns costs $350 to $2,500. The cost of a burial plot varies by size, type of cemetery, and location.
How much does a plot cost at a cemetery?
The average cost of a single burial plot in a public cemetery in a single casket is around $200 and $2,000. A single burial plot in a private cemetery can cost between $2,000 and $5,000.
What happens when you buy a burial plot?
When you buy a burial plot, you buy the ownership of the land. You buy the right to bury yourself or somebody there for a certain amount of time. The local authorities have the right to sell the lease on the land.
Who owns the deeds to a grave?
The owner of the grave is the person whose name appears on the deed. They own the exclusive right of burial and they are the only ones who can put a headstone or memorial on the grave.
What does ownership of a grave mean?
When you buy a grave, you purchase the exclusive right of burial in the burial plot. You can assign who can use the grave and you have the right to erect a headstone or monument on the burial plot you bought.
Who owns the deeds to a grave?
The grave plot owner is the person whose name appears on the deed. They have the exclusive right to burial. They can choose who can be buried in the plot. They also have the right to sell the burial plot.
Who owns a burial plot after death?
If you own the burial plot and you pass away, the right is transferred to the executor or administrator of your estate. Your next of kin may have the right if no one is appointed to be the administrator of your estate. If you have a will, the right of ownership can be transferred according to your wishes.
Do you own your cemetery plot forever?
When you buy a cemetery plot, the right of ownership will not expire and it will be yours as long as you want. You have the right to use the grave or sell it.
Can I sell my burial plot?
If you are registered in the deed, you are the burial plot owner and you have the right to sell it. Some states have rules requiring owners who want to sell to sell back the plot to the cemetery before they opt to sell via a brokerage.
Are graves reused?
Your exclusive right for burial ends when the lease ends. You may renew it however, the cemetery owner or the government may not allow it and the burial ground can be reused. In this case, the bones will either be removed or placed in an ossuary. Sometimes, they dig deeper graves to allow for a new burial.
Can you be buried on your own property?
Burial laws vary by state. There are three states that never allow home burial these states are Indiana, California, and Washington. Most states allow you to be buried on your own property.
Should I pre-buy a burial plot?
You can always pre-buy a burial plot. Buying a burial plot in advance can potentially save you money because a burial plot is real estate that goes up in pricing.
At what age should you buy a burial plot?
The best age to buy a burial plot is when you are in your 20’s and 30’s. Buying a burial plot can save you money over time.
Is a burial plot an asset?
Yes, a burial plot is considered an asset because it is a piece of real estate that may increase in value over time.
Is a burial plot considered real estate?
Yes, a burial plot is considered a real estate that may significantly increase in value over time.
Do grave plots increase in value?
Yes, grave plots usually increase in value over time. A grave plot is a prime piece of real estate that can yield significant returns in time. The increase in value of your burial plot may depend on the location and when you bought it.
Are graves a good investment?
Yes, graves can be a good investment. There is a steady demand and supply is decreasing that’s why their value increase over time.
How much is a burial plot?
On average, burial plots for urns and cremated remains can cost around $350 to $2,500. The burial plot for a casket can cost between $525 to $5,000. The cost of a burial plot varies by location, kind of space, and type of cemetery.
How long is the lease on a burial plot?
The lease on the burial plot can range between 25 to 100 years. When the lease expires you lose the exclusive right to burial. You may opt to renew the lease or the plot can be resold.
Who pays for graveyard maintenance?
Graveyard maintenance is usually the responsibility of the family of the deceased. You may inquire about graveyard maintenance with your cemetery director.
Can I sell my burial plot?
Yes, you can sell your burial but you need to check with your state’s comptroller about the transfer of plot regulations. The burial plot brokerages are unregulated in the US but some states require the deed holder to sell their plot back to the cemetery before selling privately.
How many bodies can be buried in a grave?
Most burial plots for caskets allow two bodies to be buried in the grave. For cremated remains, it varies by the number of urns that can be fitted in one plot.
How many graves can fit in an acre?
An acre of land can fit 1,815 plots with a standard size of 3×8 feet per burial plot.