Keeping your family and mortgage safe as houses
It’s important to take out the right insurance policies to make sure you, your property and family are protected if anything happens. Here at Penny House, we use a panel of lenders for protection. We use Legal and General for Building and Contents cover and work with third parties to provide the most suitable policies for your needs.
Life insurance is an insurance policy that pays out a lump sum or regular income to your dependents (usually your partner, spouse and/or children) in the unfortunate event of your death. How much you pay for life insurance depends on factors such as your age, health and lifestyle.
Why life insurance is important
If you have dependents who rely on you financially, it’s important to consider life insurance as part of your general financial planning. This is especially the case if you have a mortgage, as the pay-out could mean your dependents can afford to keep living in your home if you pass away.
Here at Penny House, we appreciate it’s hard to think about your death and how it would affect your family. However, we also firmly believe that shying away from the matter isn’t an option if you have dependents, as we’d hate them to be put at financial risk. You can rely on us to discuss life insurance sympathetically and help find the right policy for your individual circumstances.
How life insurance works
As you’d expect, there are different types of life insurance. One of the most common is called ‘term’ insurance. This pays a pre-agreed lump sum or regular income to your dependents if you pass away during the term of the policy. You can add your spouse or partner to the policy if you wish.
It’s up to you how much insurance to take out. You can also decide on the length of the term, perhaps choosing to end the policy after your children have reached adulthood. Choosing the right policy and sum assured can be difficult, but our trained advisers will help you make the right decision for your individual circumstances.
Critical illness cover
Often combined with life insurance, critical illness cover is an insurance policy that pays a tax-free lump sum or provides regular income if you’re diagnosed with a severe illness or have a serious accident. It’s especially important to consider this type of insurance if you’re self-employed, as your income will obviously be affected if you’re unable to work.
As with life insurance, critical illness cover can be a hard thing to discuss. But it’s important to consider how you, or your family, could afford to make your mortgage payments and cover other expenses and household costs, if you were to become seriously ill.
There are different types of critical illness insurance on the market, with some covering a wider range of conditions than others. You can choose how much cover to take out and how long the policy will last. Our advisers will be on hand to offer expert advice, so you can make informed decisions about your policy.
Income protection insurance
How would you afford to make your mortgage payments if you became ill, lost your job or your business revenue took a nose-dive? If you’re not sure, don’t take the risk – talk to Penny House about income protection cover. There are lots of different policies available, although there are just two basic types: short-term, also known as Accident, Sickness and Unemployment (ASU) protection, and long-term policies.
ASU insurance will usually only pay out for a year or two whilst, like the name suggests, long-term policies will continue either until you’re able to go back or work, or your business recovers, or the insurance term comes to an end.
You can take out income protection to pay off a particular debt, such as your mortgage, or there are also policies that you’re free to spend as you wish. Some policies pay out a regular sum whilst others make monthly payments. Your Penny House adviser will help you find the right type and level of insurance to meet your needs.
This Payment Protection Insurance is optional. There are other providers of Payment Protection Insurance and other products designed to protect you against the loss of income. For impartial information about insurance, please visit the website at www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk.
Taking out buildings insurance is a requirement of your mortgage, so we’ll need to discuss this with you when we handle your application. If you’re planning to live in the house or flat yourself, you’ll need contents insurance too, to protect your furniture and possessions against fire, damage or theft.
You can normally save money by purchasing a combined buildings and contents policy from one provider. Naturally, the amount of cover you need will depend on the value of your house and its contents, and where you live. When we calculate your buildings quote, we can obtain a rebuild quote from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). It will be up to you tell us how much you think your contents are worth.
You can also add other elements to the policy, such as cover for personal possessions outside the home, special cover for bikes and other valuables, and shed insurance. Our qualified advisers will discuss your requirements in detail, so we can make sure you have the right type and level of cover in place.
If you have a buy-to-let mortgage, you’ll almost always be required to take out landlord’s insurance. This is similar to buildings and contents insurance in that it protects the property and any fixtures, fittings and furniture you provide to your tenants. You’ll also receive a pay-out if your tenants don’t pay the rent and, sometimes, if the property if empty for a while.
What’s more, you’ll be covered if your tenants suffer an injury or become ill whilst at your property and this is considered to be your fault. Some policies include accidental and/or malicious damage caused by your tenants. And you can also add employer’s cover if people who live in the premises work for you.
Of course, the cost of landlord’s insurance varies greatly and depends on the type and level of cover required as well as things like the condition and location of your house and flat. If you have a portfolio of properties, you may be able to get a discount if you take out multiple properties with the same provider. Here at Penny House Financial Services, we have a wealth of experience of working with buy-to-let landlords and investors. With access to the whole market and strong relationships with market-leading providers, you can rely on us to help your find the right policy.