site image

Funeral Homes vs. Mortuaries—Which is Better?

Published: July 26, 2021

Wondering what the difference is between a funeral home and a mortuary? While the two have their similarities in terms of function and process, identifying the difference between the services they offer can help you decide which of the two are right for you and your loved ones’ wishes.

What are Funeral Homes?

Funeral homes take care of all the necessary procedures for the burial or cremation of a deceased individual. This would include filing all the relevant paperwork with the appropriate county or state. But more than just handling the actual burial or cremation process, funeral homes also offer services centered towards helping the bereaved family members cope with the loss of their loved one.

As such, it is not uncommon to see funeral homes offering full memorialization services and grief support along with traditional funeral services. Funeral homes also have funeral directors who assist the grieving family members with the entire process, including preparations for the memorial service and grief counseling.

In terms of ambiance, funeral homes are designed with the goal of bringing comfort to the bereaved, so the surroundings are often more relaxing compared to mortuaries. Keep in mind that not every funeral home has a crematory on-site. So in cases where cremation is the chosen option, the deceased will first need to be transported to a secondary facility for the cremation process, and then brought back to the funeral home for memorialization. The funeral home works alongside you every step of the way to coordinate this process, and so much more.

What about Mortuaries?

Similar to a funeral home, a mortuary also offers services to prepare the deceased for either burial or cremation. It also handles all the paperwork relevant to the procedure. Unlike funeral homes, however, mortuaries do not offer services that center on helping survivors cope with their loss. As such, grief counseling, tributes, and other similar services, are not offered in mortuaries.

Where funeral homes focus on grief support and accommodating requests from bereaved family members, mortuaries are often direct with their services, offering only the minimum assistance with outside paperwork, memorializations, and coping with grief. This is not always the case, but mortuaries rarely offer full-scale memorialization, and may only offer a quick viewing of the deceased for the bereaved. Some mortuaries do have funeral directors, so if this is part of your consideration, make sure to do a thorough check with the mortuary of your choice to see if they have one. Although the laws vary by state, Pennsylvania does require a licensed director if there is a full casket burial, and to sign the death certificate.

Funeral Homes vs. Mortuary—Which Is Better?

As noted above, both establishments differ in terms of the support they offer to the bereaved. There is no wrong or right choice, as both options do offer the basic services needed to prepare the deceased for burial or cremation. If you would like to hold a full-scale memorial service for your loved one, for example, it would be best to consider the services of a funeral home..

Thinking about your budget? If money is an issue, you may benefit better from mortuaries, as their services are relatively cheaper compared to those of funeral homes. You can also try looking for blended facilities in your area, which are a cross between a funeral home and a mortuary, as these tend to offer more services than the typical mortuary.

Roupp Funeral Home offers all services, whether the family requests simple services or complex. We use a trusted, off-site crematory with many years of experience and state of the art equipment, and a funeral director cares for your loved one every step of the way- burial or cremation. We have various packages ranging from a full funeral with burial to a simple cremation with no viewing or services.

If you are looking for a funeral home in Pennsylvania, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at Roupp Funeral Home. You may call us at 1-570-966-2402, or send us an email at We would be happy to assist you with any concern you may have.

© 2023 Roupp Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility