What is an Interment of Ashes? Easy Guide

Interment of ashes involves placing cremated ashes in a meaningful resting place to visit or pay tribute to at any time.

Choosing what to do with a loved one's ashes is an important decision that comes during a time of grieving, reflection, and remembrance.

There are many options available, from scattering ashes in a special place to keeping them close by in an urn at home. But for some families, interment offers a unique way to honor their loved one.

Interment of ashes, or the act of placing ashes in a final resting place, is an option that combines respect, tradition, and the comfort of having a dedicated space to connect with those we've lost.

What is an interment of ashes?

An interment of ashes is the final placement of your loved one's cremated remains in a designated resting place. This could be a cemetery plot, a columbarium niche (a small compartment in a building designed for urns), a designated urn garden, or even private property with permission from the landowner.

Why choose interment?

Choosing interment for your loved one's ashes is a deeply personal decision. Here are some reasons why families find comfort in this option:

Interment of ashes: Options to choose from

Burial of ashes

Columbarium niche

A columbarium is a structure designed specifically to house cremation urns. These can be beautiful and dignified spaces, often built within a mausoleum or as freestanding structures.

Columbarium niches come in various sizes, allowing you to choose a space that best suits your needs and budget. Some columbariums offer personalized features like nameplates, inscriptions, or even small display areas for keepsakes.

Did you know? The legendary Walt Disney chose an option like this. After his death in 1966, Walt Disney was cremated, and his remains are kept in a cemetery mausoleum in California.

Guidelines for choosing a location

When considering interment for your loved one's ashes, here are some questions that can help you determine the most meaningful location:

Steps to arranging an interment

Your cremation service provider can guide you through each step with care and respect. Here’s a detailed explanation of what’s usually involved:

Initial consultation

Selecting an interment location

Selecting an urn

Planning the ceremony (optional)

The best cremation service providers understand that grief is a journey. They will be there to support you every step of the way. Following the interment, you can reach out to them with any questions or concerns you may have.

Documents required for an interment of ashes

While specific requirements may vary depending on your state and chosen interment location (cemetery, columbarium, or private property), here's a general list of documents you might need:

Remember: This is not an exhaustive list. It's always best to check with your chosen cremation service provider and interment location for their specific requirements.

Interment of ashes: Cost breakdown (Averages for US)

The cost of interment can vary significantly depending on several factors, including your location, chosen options, and desired level of personalization. 

Here's a breakdown of the average costs:


Average Cost




$2,000 - $6,000

This covers the cremation process itself, including basic services from the cremation provider.

Costs can vary based on facility fees, container selection, and add-on services (witnessing cremation, paperwork assistance).


$35 - $2,000+

Urns come in a wide range of materials (metal, wood, ceramic, biodegradable), sizes, and styles.

A basic urn can be quite affordable, while elaborate or handcrafted options can cost significantly more.

Interment Location

Cemetery plot

$1,000 - $10,000+

Costs can vary greatly depending on cemetery location, plot size, and desirability.
Purchasing a new plot in a prestigious cemetery will be more expensive than a smaller plot in a rural area.

Columbarium niche

$500 - $5,000+

Niche prices depend on the columbarium's location, size of the niche,
and any included features (bronze nameplates, engraving).
Generally, more elaborate columbariums in urban areas will have higher costs.

Burying ashes on public land

Free (Permit Fees)

Permit fees may be required to scatter ashes on public lands
managed by federal or state agencies. These fees are typically minimal (around $25-$50).

Interring ashes on
private property


Obtaining written permission from the landowner is crucial. There may not be additional costs involved.

Memorial service

$500 - $10,000+

Costs depend on the venue, catering, officiant fees, music, and other desired elements.

A simple gathering at a place of worship might be less expensive than a catered reception at a banquet hall.

Marker or memorialization

$200 - $5,000+

Headstones, benches, plaques, or other permanent memorials at cemeteries or columbariums
can range in price depending on size, material, and intricacy of design.

Important notes:

Frequently asked questions

Are ashes interred or interned?

Cremated ashes are interred, not interned. To inter means to place the ashes into a final resting place, such as an urn, grave, or columbarium. Think of it like a burial of ashes.

Is interring different from scattering ashes?

Scattering ashes is different from interring them. Scattering involves dispersing the ashes in a meaningful place or into nature, without confining them to a specific location.

Interring, in contrast, involves placing the ashes in a designated spot where they remain contained, such as in an urn, grave, or niche in a columbarium.

Next steps

At Meadow, we understand that navigating the cremation process can be overwhelming during an already difficult time.

While Meadow doesn't offer traditional interment services, we provide a meaningful way to celebrate a life well-lived with affordable, all-inclusive cremation services and customized memorial planning services in the Los Angeles County area. 

Our team of caring memorial planners partner with you in this tender time to create an occasion as remarkable as the life it honors.

With our licensed team, you can expect:

This allows you to focus on what matters most — remembering and celebrating your loved one's life with family and friends.

Explore our Personalized Memorial Services