The cost of a headstone is an agenda issue that family members of a deceased must address during funeral arrangements. Getting the cost right is essential to ensuring that a funeral remains within the set budget, especially if the deceased did not have a funeral insurance cover. Notably, the cost of a headstone is not cast in stone and varies based on different factors. This article highlights the top factors that dictate how much you should pay for a loved one's gravestone.

Headstone Material 

The material of a headstone determines a significant portion of the total cost. For example, monuments can be made from various materials such as granite, marble, bronze, concrete, limestone and fieldstone. However, some of these materials are expensive, while others are relatively cheap. For instance, granite is considered an exquisite stone due to its aesthetic appearance and resistance to extreme temperatures and acid rain. Such attributes make granite headstones the most expensive, but it is worth the cost. On the other hand, fieldstone headstones are the cheapest because they are made from naturally occurring rocks. Unfortunately, fieldstone is easily damaged by extreme environmental conditions. Therefore, if your budget allows it, choose granite, marble or bronze headstones. Otherwise, you should choose concrete, sandstone or fieldstone if you are on a tight budget.

Inscription Size 

A headstone is incomplete without an inscription. Engraving is the most common method used to inscribe text on a gravestone. Therefore, the number of characters that make an inscription determine part of a headstone's cost. For instance, most headstone artisans charge a constant fee for every letter up to a certain number of characters. Any additional letters attract extra fees. For example, if you want a headstone with 20 letters and an artisan charges $10 per letter up to 30 characters, you will pay $200 for the inscription. However, if your inscription exceeds 30 characters, an artisan will charge extra for additional lettering.


Do you want an in-built vase to hold flowers, a full-colour ceramic image of the deceased or sculptures on a headstone? Such accessories add aesthetics to a monument, but they cost differently depending on the complexity of a design. For instance, designing an in-built headstone vase attracts a lower fee than an angel's sculpture. Therefore, think carefully about what you want to accessorise a loved one's headstone with before committing. Notably, monument service providers can break down the cost of headstone accessories based on complexity.

Contact a local headstone manufacturer to learn more about your options.