If you have just taken out a mortgage, this repayment is likely to be your largest monthly outgoing. If you were unable to meet this payment each month, how would you survive and would you be at risk of losing your home?
There are several ways you can protect yourself and your family from being unable to meet your mortgage outgoings. You can take out protection insurance to cover your mortgage payments, or you could take out general income protection insurance. There are also the options of critical illness cover, and life insurance if you want to ensure your family can remain in the family home should anything happen to you.
In a nutshell, by having mortgage protection insurance in place, the cost of your mortgage payments are covered should you become unwell or unemployed.
Mortgage protection insurance allows you to continue meeting your mortgage repayments, even if you are no longer in receipt of a regular income. There are three types available: unemployment, accident and sickness, and accident, sickness and unemployment cover. Obviously the more cover you have, the higher your premium.
The cost can vary depending on how much income you need to insure, and the insurance premium will take into account your age, the cost of your mortgage repayments and any underlying medical conditions, along with certain lifestyle choices which could increase your risk of illness. In addition, your job will be risk assessed as this can also affect your premium. For example, the policy will cost more if you are a heavy manual worker as opposed to computer programmer.
There is some flexibility on how your policy will pay out should you make a claim. You may want the policy to just cover your mortgage costs, or you may want it to cover all other outgoings. You can also choose to base the cover on your salary, with many providers typically paying out 50% of your monthly salary.
There is usually a period of time that you must be off work before you can make a claim, this is referred to as an excess period and can be anything from 30 to 180 days. Therefore, if you do take out this insurance we advise having enough savings to last until your insurance company starts to pay out and the more savings you have, and the longer the excess period – the less premium you’ll pay. There are policies that will pay out from the day you are off work, these are known as ‘back-to-day-one’ policies and will typically be more expensive than policies with an excess period.
Income protection is an alternative to mortgage protection, and will pay around 50% of your salary if you are unable to work because of an accident or illness. It tends to be more expensive than mortgage protection, as it will pay out for a longer period, for example until you can go back to work or reach retirement. However, this type of cover won’t cover redundancy.
Critical Illness Cover
Critical illness cover will pay a lump sum if you’re diagnosed with a serious illness, but it won’t pay a regular income.
Life insurance is worth considering if you have dependents that you would want to stay in the family home. It will pay a lump sum in the event of your death and it could help your family repay the mortgage on your family home.
If you are interested in taking out insurance, talk to our experts at The Mortgage Hub. We would be happy to look at your individual circumstances and advise on the best policy. It’s worth noting that some companies will continue to pay your salary, or a proportion of it, for a set period if you need to take time off owing to illness.
You may also be covered by protection insurance from your employer.