Kamis, 29 Januari 2009

Do You Believe that Home Equity Wiped Out for the Long Run?

The grand housing experiment of the early 21st Century has gone sour. Like something out of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, mortgage lenders tried their hand at providing homeownership to everyone-even those who couldn't afford it. Initially, the results were promising; home prices and home equity climbed, and homeowners became wealthy. But now, it's all gone bad, and some experts are arguing that the damage done may last a lifetime.

Meanwhile, in the years when real estate was booming, home equity values grew much faster than inflation, personal income, and rent metrics. Assuming that those values have to get back to where they would've been without that excessive growth, it might be a long time before home prices start increasing again.

While the high street lender may get the best deal for the mortgage this does not mean they can do the same for the protection for the mortgage. In fact, buying mortgage cover alongside the borrowing is often the most expensive way of doing so and the most risky. Often very little information is given regarding the terms and exclusions that come with a policy. This means the consumer is unaware of the exclusions and could be buying a very high-priced policy that they cannot claim against if they find themselves out of work.

Some lenders might ask that you do take out some form of protection for the money you are borrowing but it does not have to be taken at the same time. Consumers do have the right to shop around for a policy and your mortgage should not depend on taking the cover offered by the lender. By choosing to shop around for the cover you can make huge savings on the total amount you pay. A specialist lender will give an instant quote for mortgage protection based on the amount you wish to cover and age of the policy holder. Along with this, they provide all the information needed for the consumer to be able to choose whether a policy would be suitable.

While providers of mortgage protection can add in their own exclusions there are some that are common to most policies. Individuals who are self-employed, retired, have a pre-existing medical condition or who are not working in a full-time position could find cover would be useless. This is not black and white; for example, self-employed individuals who had to ceased trading altogether through involuntary unemployment could still benefit from a policy. And those who have an illness that has not reared its head during the last two years could also benefit. It is essential to carefully check the policy details to make sure an exclusion would not apply to you.

After taking out suitable cover the policy holder would have peace of mind if they lost their income through sickness, accident or unemployment. Their policy would provide a tax-free income once they had been incapable of working for between 30 to 90 days. The money received would cover the monthly repayments for the mortgage and related outgoings such as insurance.

Those individuals who think they could rely on the state helping out in their time of need could be in for a disappointment. While the state does offer help, you have to qualify for it. The help the state provides depends on how much money you have in savings; having over £8,000 means you would be expected to use this money to support yourself. Also, if you have a partner living with you who is in full-time work then you also would not be eligible for help, and the help that is given will only pay towards the interest part of the first £100,000 of your mortgage. So a far better solution to relying on the state is to take out mortgage insurance from an independent provider.

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