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Take Care When Buying Mortgage Insurance

Dec 20, 2007
In 2005 the Financial Services Authority (FSA) began investigating the payment protection insurance sector and subsequently handed out fines to several well known firms on the high street for mis-selling payment protection products. Recommendations were made for selling the cover and some changes for the better have been seen, however recently the FSA handed out a fine not only to a firm, but also the Chief Executive for failing to follow the proper procedures when it came to selling mortgage insurance.

The company was found to have sold 2,000 policies to consumers remortgaging while putting them at a high risk of being mis-sold their policy and were the first firm to receive not only a company fine but also where the Chief Executive had to put their hands in his own pocket.

However, the negative publicity that mortgage payment protection insurance (MPPI) has attracted does not do the product justice. Mortgage insurance, when taken out correctly and understood after being given the key facts and exclusions, can be an excellent safety net on which you can fall if you should lose your income. If you were to be out of work after suffering from an accident, sickness or through such as unemployment then you could be left struggling to find the money to repay your mortgage. If you cannot keep up with your mortgage repayments then you risk having your home repossessed as the State cannot be relied upon to give you the money needed.

A mortgage insurance policy could begin to give you a tax free income which would start once you had been out of work for a set period of time which can be anywhere between 31 and 90 days of being continually out of work. Once the cover had commenced payout then it would continue to do so for between 12 and 24 months depending on the provider. However the cover is not suitable for all circumstances and you have to make sure that is suitable for yours before taking out the cover.

Exclusions which are common to all policies include if you are retired, self-employed, if you suffer from an ongoing medical condition or you only work part time. Providers can add additional exclusions so when looking for your cover take these into consideration along with looking for the cheapest quotes for the cover.

In the past mortgage insurance has been known to be an expensive addition to an already over stretched budget and it can when taken out alongside the mortgage. Buying cover from an independent specialist provider can save you a lot of money. Along with this as they are more ethical you can be sure that they will provide the key facts of the policy and make sure the consumer understands the exclusions before buying and so can make an informed decision regarding the policy. A policy can work in the way it is intended to do but you have to know what you are buying and stick with a specialist provider if you want to be sure you have a quality product which is backed by experience in selling payment protection.
About the Author
Simon Burgess is Managing Director of the award-winning British Insurance, a specialist provider of mortgage insurance, loan protection insurance and income protection insurance.
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