Insurance – An Overview

It is true to say that these days you can arrange an insurance policy for almost every eventuality. The most common insurance policies that people take out will include buildings insurance, contents insurance, life assurance and critical illness cover.

Another common insurance policy that many homeowners decide to take out is Mortgage payment protection insurance (MPPI) – this type of policy can cover your mortgage repayments for a period of time in the event of accident, sickness or unemployment.

Buildings Insurance

Every mortgage lender will require you to have a buildings insurance policy in place when taking out a mortgage.

If you own the freehold (the building and the land that it stands on) it is your responsibility to arrange this insurance. If you are a leaseholder then you must make sure that your freeholder has arranged cover on your behalf. It is common for leaseholders to pay out for this policy in there annual management payments to the freeholder.

As long as you have a mortgage on your property then the lender will have an invested interest in it too. The lender will therefore be very keen to make sure that you have your property covered in the event of fire, subsidence or heavy storms.

You may decide to arrange cover independently or through your mortgage lender, either way you may have to provide evidence that you have a sufficient policy in place. Most lenders will not insist that you take out contents cover for your home although this is usually highly recommended.

Contents Insurance

It is very common to arrange a combined buildings and contents insurance policy – most providers will offer to set out a policy in this way. If you ever need to make a claim, you will receive the cost of the replacements for damaged goods from your insurance company – often with an excess although this is agreed before you take the policy out.

An assessment of your possessions must be carried out before applying for contents cover to make sure that you are not underinsured or over insured. Some contents insurance policies will offer new-for-old cover whereas others may offer simply cash – decide which one best suits you before applying. Most people will prefer a new-for-old policy as this will ensure that they receive an exact replacement or even an updated version of the goods lost. In this way you will not have the hassle of shopping around in order to purchase a replacement.

There are certain factors that can reduce a contents insurance premium such as having a burglar alarm in place, having smoke alarms installed and even living in a neighbourhood watch area. There is a wealth of contents insurance providers around, from traditional insurers to banks and supermarkets – always shop around for the best cover.

Mortgage Payment Protection Insurance (MPPI)

Mortgage payment protection insurance can provide cover for your monthly mortgage repayments in the event of accident, sickness or unemployment. MPPI encompasses a combination of insurances however it is possible to arrange solely one type of cover. For example, you may simply wish to take out unemployment cover if you are already covered through work for accident and sickness. .

While about 60 percent of new mortgage borrowers take out MPPI, only one-third of all borrowers have this insurance – this may be due on the main part to the price of the policy itself. As with all other insurance policies, it pays to shop around. There are even some mortgage deals that will have free MPPI included however this will only usually cover you for six months to a year.

Again, with all insurance polices it is important to make regular reviews or your cover in order to make sure that you are not underinsured or that your policy has not expired. Whenever you increase the size of your mortgage by way of a remortgage, you will also need to increase the level of the MPPI to reflect it.

Leave a Reply