How Much Does A Headstone Cost In Alberta?

October 6, 2023


For many families, choosing the perfect headstone is an essential step in the journey of remembrance. This enduring marker, created with love and respect, serves as a testament to a cherished life lived. Across Alberta, the role of a reliable monument company becomes pivotal in this deeply personal decision.

At its core, a headstone does more than just mark a resting place; it tells a story, preserving the essence of a person’s life for generations to come. There are primarily three types of headstones families can choose from, including flat markers, pillow headstones, and upright headstones. Each offers a unique aesthetic and serves its commemorative purpose differently.

As we delve into this guide, it’s crucial to recognize that the choice of a headstone is influenced by various factors, all impacting its overall cost. Be it the design intricacies, size, material, or additional features, understanding these elements is fundamental when making an informed decision.

At Summit Memorials, our goal is to ensure you’re equipped with the knowledge to choose a fitting tribute that aligns with both your vision and budget.

Factors Affecting Headstone Costs

As pointed out earlier, selecting the right headstone involves a delicate balance of personal preferences, design intricacies, and budget considerations. Among the many determinants of headstone costs, the type stands out as one of the most influential.

Let’s delve into how different headstone types can impact your budget.

Type Of Headstone

When families come to Summit Memorials, the distinction among headstone types often becomes a focal point of our discussion. Each type not only has its unique aesthetic and presence but also varies significantly in pricing:

  • Flat Markers: These headstones lie flush with the ground, offering a minimalist yet poignant memorial. Being relatively simpler in design and structure, flat markers typically start at around $900.00 and up. Their subtle nature makes them a popular choice for those seeking an appropriate tribute.
  • Pillow Headstones: Characterized by their gentle slope, pillow headstones stand elevated, often around 5 inches high at the front and extending to about 8 inches at the back. The slope, coupled with the added granite base, explains their starting price of around $1,500.00. The unique design offers a blend of prominence and elegance, making them a preferred choice for many.
  • Upright Headstones: These headstones stand tall and are hard to miss in a cemetery, exuding a sense of reverence and respect. They typically come with a granite base and have a standard thickness of 4 – 10 inches, although variations in thickness are available.
  • With prices beginning at approximately $1,500.00, upright monuments are comparable to pillow headstones but offer a distinctly different aesthetic appeal.

Colour Of Granite

The cost implications associated with granite colours largely stem from where the granite is sourced. Just like gemstones, certain granite colours are rarer and harder to extract than others. For instance, hues of blue or exotic patterns might be mined from remote locations or might be available in limited quantities, making them more expensive.

Additionally, the logistics of transporting granite from its source to our headstone monument company can significantly impact its price. Granite sourced from far-flung regions or countries where mining is more labour-intensive often comes with a heftier price tag due to shipping and import duties.

The Size Of The Headstone

For a single person’s memorial, the headstone typically carries a singular name, date, and possibly a quote or image. This often requires a more compact space. However, for couples or family plots, there’s a need to incorporate multiple names, dates, and potentially individualized messages or designs.

Such requirements naturally demand a larger canvas, which in turn, impacts the price.

The physical materials required for larger headstones, and the additional labour for crafting, engraving, and installation, all contribute to the cost increment. The intricacy of design details can also vary based on size, with larger headstones often accommodating more elaborate artwork or inscriptions.

When consulting with a headstone monument company like ours, it’s essential to discuss and determine the right size that not only fits the narrative you wish to portray but also aligns with your budget.

Have a look at our brochure for more details.

Shape And Polish

The shape and polish of a headstone provide a unique touch, ensuring that every memorial has its distinctive flair. At Summit Memorials, we often discuss the spectrum from standard to custom designs with families.

While rectangular or oval shapes might be considered more traditional, there’s been a surge in demand for custom shapes – heart designs, crosses, or even abstract forms that symbolize a specific sentiment or memory.

Also, the complexity of crafting a non-standard shape involves more intricate work, specialized tools, and, often, more time – all of which factor into the cost.

Additionally, the finish or polish on the granite also plays a role in pricing. A headstone polished on all sides will invariably cost more than one polished only on the front, simply due to the labour and expertise required to give the granite its smooth, reflective finish.


Larger headstones, especially upright and some pillow variants, can be incredibly heavy, requiring specialized equipment like cranes for proper placement. At Summit Memorials, we stress the importance of professional monument installation to ensure the headstone’s longevity and safety.

Foundations are another key aspect. Some cemeteries provide a foundation, but in cases where they may not, the headstone monument company will often offer this service. This, too, has associated costs depending on the size and type of the headstone.


A headstone can be so much more than a name and date. It can be a canvas that tells a story. Accessories help in narrating this tale. Vases allow for fresh flowers, symbolizing life and memories. Porcelain photos offer a visual connection, capturing the essence of the departed.

Custom designs – be they etchings of favourite items, landscapes, or even motifs – add depth and personalization. Each of these elements, while enhancing the beauty of the memorial, also has associated costs.

When planning the headstone, it’s essential to consider not just the immediate costs but also potential future additions, ensuring the monument remains a fitting tribute for years to come.
Why Should You Choose Summit Memorials?

At Summit Memorials, our years of expertise, deep respect for traditions, and commitment to excellence set us apart. We’re not just a headstone monument company; we’re a part of your journey of remembrance.

Contact us today.


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