Episode 1, 2003
My brother suffered a sudden death at the age of 33. My mother and father and immediate family members struggle through making arrangements and take the dreaded trip below Kutis to select a casket. We make our selection and head back to the office for final paperwork. The cost was probably in line but we had not priced the arrangements and we were shocked, as well as still in shock that my brother was gone. One of the Kutis boys could see we were in shock and says, "That is a lot of money, if you would like, we can cut some costs...." I am thinking, this guy sees my parents grief and is going to offer a 5%, 10% discount. He continues, "by going to a cheaper casket." I wanted to grab that pencil neck by his throat. My parents were paying cash for whatever arrangements we made, we were struggling with the whole ordeal and he was way off track and way out of line. We said, "We'll take what we ordered."
Episode 2, 2010
My father dies and is in the same room my brother and many other members of my family have been viewed in, problem is, with a clear schedule of when dad was to go into the chapel, due to poor scheduling of personnel or people showing up late, we were forced to wait while they shuffled dad and all of the flowers from room to room well beyond schedule, vacuums going, etc. It was very unsettling and we were told by an employee that they had a busy schedule. We did not specify our schedule, we left that to them. If they were so busy they should have pushed dad's back an hour to when they could handle the task. I guess they were squeezing in as many as they could to maximize thier bottom line.
Be Careful. “Our lawyers tell us our price sheet is not illegal – you can always go somewhere else” according to Tommy Kutis IV. Our mother passed away recently, and we went to several funeral homes to get comparative prices. We asked for prices without the cost of the casket because we were planning on having a custom casket shipped to the funeral home of choice. After careful review, Kutis appeared to have competitive prices – with the price sheet clearly stating the casket was extra. There was no mention or notation in the price sheet requiring the purchase of a casket from Kutis. We had our mom sent to Kutis to begin funeral preparations, and then met with Kutis to finalize the arrangements. When we mentioned we were having a casket shipped in – Kutis was OK with that – but then surprisingly all of the other prices increased. We thought it was illegal to bundle or represent pricing in such a way as to inhibit comparative shopping – but I guess not. By the time Tommy Kutis IV told us we could go elsewhere, we were already locked in from a timing perspective. The prices were jacked-up up so much that we ended up having to buy the casket from Kutis at a 200% - 300% markup. I encourage everyone to shop around – look at prices on the internet - but since we are all infrequent buyers, we don’t know the right questions to ask to keep from getting caught in this sting.
Both my parents were taken care of by Tom Kutis and Don Palliczak. Both were extremely professional, helpful, and made this difficult process so very easy on the rest of my family.
This review is for a standing thank you to both of them.
Locally owned, well run and very professional. Face it - when handling with death you do not need any hassles or bumps in the road as you're going thru enough stress already. The Kutis team does an excellent job at paving a smooth road from start to finish. It shows that they've been doing this for decades and the family ownership prevents price gouging, cutting corners that you may find elsewhere. We used the Affton Gravois location for both our parents and they handled all the details with finesse and ease. I do wish their breakroom was bigger, but oh well. They had a wide selection of caskets to choose from and anything else you might need. They should have more easels and tables to display photos etc., but that is a minor grip. They were really good about transferring flowers, keeping the ones we wanted and picking up display boards we left behind. Obviously, we were not fully aware of picking up after ourselves due to the state of grief, so they quietly did it for us. Will use them again for others - we just felt safe, secure and looked after by Kutis.
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