Cost of Monuments

Monuments are memorials used to mark one’s final resting place in cemeteries of all types. The style of monument may range from elaborate family or individual headstones to smaller, more subtle grave markers, which also affects the cost of monuments. Costs may vary with options ranging from $1,000 to over $10,000.

How Much Do Monuments Cost?

The average price of a monument can vary depending on the style, material and color a family selects. The cost of the monument may also be affected by the wording and design.

Flat, metal, beveled or slanted stone grave markers are often the most cost-effective options, ranging from approximately $1,000-$2,000. As families select more traditional upright headstones, such as single stones, double stones, or family monuments, costs may begin around $2,000.

Additional factors including the material, size of the monument, inscription characters, artistic design, and installation may add to the cost. Depending on the range of complexity of the monument, families may find costs totaling over $10,000.

Monument Cost Considerations

Memorial stones, or monuments, can be as unique as the people they memorialize. The average cost of a headstone depends on the material, size, type and design of the headstone. Costs tend to rise with customization.

Most upright monuments are made of granite or marble, durable materials meant to withstand environmental wear and tear for many years. Granite tends to be among the most affordable options.

Some people will choose to customize headstones with more elaborate laser etchings or 3D technology used to create designs or replicate photographs. Others may select specially shaped stones, such as those carved to look like angels or hearts, or a bench. When a family selects intricately carved globes, angels, obelisks or bronze accents, they may anticipate that these works of art may be accompanied by a higher cost.

When families purchase a double stone, or a family stone, the monument is erected at the time of the first passing. Upon the second passing the stone is traditionally inscribed to honor the second family member. Inscription costs typically begin at $500 and may increase based on the number of characters and details of the design.

Families often purchase perpetual care for their plot when purchasing a grave or monument. Perpetual care costs, which provide upkeep of the cemetery grounds and individual plots, often range between 5%-15% of the plot price. Funds paid toward perpetual care are typically placed in an endowment fund with the cemetery.

Monument Costs & Ordering

Following an interment, the family may begin to think about ordering a monument for their loved one. Generally, this is done within a year of the passing if the family has not made arrangements for a monument or inscription in advance.

In some cases, a cemetery may also allow a family to erect the monument prior to one’s passing. Purchasing, customizing, and setting a monument prior to one’s passing is a way to lock in the cost of the monument, minimizing additional costs at the time of need.