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Mortgage Payment Protection Relieves Financial Burdens

Apr 15, 2008
Many Brits are paying extraordinary premiums for insurance protection that they do not even know they have. Some know they have the protection but are not aware that there are less expensive options that provide better benefits and better services. This insurance is payment protection insurance (PPI) and it comes in three basic forms. The first type of PPI is mortgage payment protection insurance (MPPI). The second is salary payment protection. The third option is loan protection. All of these insurance products provide monthly income benefits to insured customers who are displaced from work by involuntary redundancy, illness, or accident.

The PPI industry has been the subject of a consumer complaint to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) recently. Consumer groups have advocated that many larger banks and lenders have been deceptive of unwitting consumers in their selling processes with the insurance. Most aggressively, some institutions have sold the mortgage payment protection products to customers that were ineligible to receive benefits. Retirees and part time employees sometimes have been sold the product, with or without their knowledge, even though one has to be employed full time to be able to received payments based on a covered event.

Other less direct methods have also been employed by institutions. Some have packaged mortgage payment protection with mortgages and other loan products without informing customers. Premiums for these institutions are often very high. The costs are simply slipped into the fine print of the primary loan product without the customer's knowledge. Sometimes, customers are informed of the insurance add-on, but they are also led to believe that without purchasing the payment protection product, the primary product is not available, or a discount might be lost.

These questionable techniques are what have lead to a large push by many consumer groups to encourage Brits to be familiar with the payment protection and explore their coverage options prior to taking out loans or buying the insurance. Some people get corned into situations in which the product is pushed on them when they are unprepared with questions or knowledge enough to deal with the provider.

Many insurance brokers, the bulk of which operate online, have worked hard to promote the benefits of buying from them. They promote their stronger reputation for honest practices in selling the insurance. They also encourage customers to become more knowledgeable about the products and providers. Insurance specialists, those that focus on these types of products, tend to have more expertise on the products and a greater desire to create customer satisfaction. Most importantly for the consumer, these specialists typically have premium rates that are 40 to 80 per cent below those offered by high street banks and lenders.

Mortgage payment protection, loan and salary protection are all viable options for Brits looking for financial security in the event of job loss. It is important that consumers become aware of product options, though, and read the fine print of loan products. Only buy the insurance with knowledge about the benefits and premium costs. Insurance brokers can help with finding the right plans at the right the price. Coverage is short-term with monthly payments, based on a percentage of normal income, lasting 12 to 24 months following the covered event.
About the Author
Simon Burgess is Managing Director of the award-winning British Insurance, a specialist provider of mortgage payment protection .
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