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Mortgage Protection Insurance Explained

mortgage protection insurance

Reviewed By: Rob Pinner

Rob Pinner Rob Pinner is the founder and CEO of Pinner Financial Services servicing all 50 states. Rob started his insurance career in 2002.

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If you have recently closed on a home loan, it’s likely that you’ve received several notices about Mortgage Protection Insurance.

Did you read them or throw them away?

If you opened your letters, you are probably curious about this insurance called “Mortgage Protection Insurance” and have ended up online to get more information.

To be clear, mortgage protection insurance is simply life insurance.  You name your beneficiary and they will choose what to do with the life insurance proceeds when you die.  Hopefully they will pay off the mortgage if that was your wish.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could set up a safety net for your loved ones so that if you were to die unexpectedly, your home mortgage could be paid off and your family could remain in their paid-for home? 

Or perhaps you get critically sick. 

Maybe you suffer a devastating heart attack or stroke and survive.

Or maybe you get that cancer diagnosis and live.

Well, many policies today have living benefit features that allow you to access the money in your life insurance policy to pay the bills, put food on the table and take care of your family while you are sick.

This living benefit feature is not expensive, these policies will not cost an extra penny more.

Mortgage Protection Insurance can pay a lump sum or monthly benefit to keep you and your family in your home even if you don’t die.



If you died today, could your family stay in their home? 


You can have this peace of mind with Mortgage Protection Insurance.


What is Mortgage Protection Insurance?

Simply put, Mortgage Protection Insurance pays off your mortgage if you die during the policy term. It is term life insurance that is designed to pay off your mortgage so that you can leave your surviving loved ones a paid-for home.

Mortgage protection is a straightforward concept. There is no need to use a mortgage protection insurance calculator, just ascertain your mortgage balance and the will be the death benefit.

To be honest, Mortgage Protection Insurance is not a “type” of life insurance but rather a “Purpose” for a life insurance policy. In almost every case, term life insurance is used as the foundation for a Mortgage Protection Plan. Since term insurance is the most affordable insurance available and can be purchased with a policy period of up to 30-years, it is the perfect life insurance product for Mortgage Protection Insurance.  

Mortgage Protection Insurance protects your mortgage by insuring your life, your spouse’s life, or both, for the amount of the mortgage and for the length of the mortgage. This way, if a covered breadwinner should die unexpectedly during the term of the policy, (which should match the term of the mortgage), the beneficiary can pay off the mortgage and the family can continue to live in the paid-for home.

What Mortgage Protection Insurance will not Do For You

Mortgage Protection Insurance is not like a homeowner’s policy and will not pay to repair or replace your home and the policy does not provide liability if you are sued by someone that gets hurt on or in your property.

Mortgage protection insurance is not the same as Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) which you may be required to purchase if your down payment on your home is insufficient. PMI does not protect you or your family; it only protects your lender if you default on your mortgage loan. Usually, a home buyer is required to purchase PMI if their down payment on the home is less than 20% of the purchase price.


I already have Life Insurance through my Job

term life insurance

Having a group term insurance policy through your employer is a wonderful benefit because there is no medical underwriting and the employer typically pays all or a portion of the premium. Your employer-sponsored life insurance should be used as a supplement to your individual life insurance program because there are some inherent issues with this type of coverage:

  • Group life insurance is not portable. If you leave your job or are terminated, you cannot take your life insurance with you.
  • The coverage limits on group life insurance is typically a multiple of your annual salary (2 or 3 times). This means if you are earning $100,000 per year, your death benefit will only be $200,000 or $300,000 which will typically fall short in paying off your mortgage and providing additional funds that your surviving loved ones will need to continue on financially.
  • If your spouse is also a breadwinner and his or her income is needed to pay the mortgage, the spouse typically cannot get covered for the same amount on the group policy and will, therefore, need an individual life insurance policy as well.

I’m Already Covered under an Individual Life Policy

If you currently have life insurance but didn’t own a home when you purchased it, your death benefit is likely not enough to cover all your insurance needs plus paying off your mortgage. Most experienced life insurance agents will always recommend that you purchase enough life insurance to provide replacement income for the following:

  1. Pay monthly living expenses for your surviving loved ones for a period of three years or more.
  2. Provide the funds needed to help with the cost of college education for your children.
  3. Provide the funds needed to pay into a retirement plan for your spouse.
  4. Pay off debts like credit cards, personal loans, and vehicle loans
  5. Pay off your mortgage

If you didn’t have a mortgage when you purchased your life insurance, it’s unlikely that the debt was considered when your agent completed your insurance needs analysis.

Isn’t Mortgage Protection Insurance just Term Insurance?

Yes. As we mentioned earlier, mortgage protection is a purpose for life insurance. The best type of insurance to use is term life insurance because it is the most affordable type of insurance and has policy periods that match up with the length of your mortgage.

When mortgage insurance was first introduced, most insurance carriers used “decreasing term” insurance because the death benefit would go down as your mortgage balance went down. Even though you ended up with little or no insurance at the end of the term, the rates did not go down as the coverage did and the monthly premiums were not that much lower than a level term policy.

Today, we primarily use level term insurance because it accommodates the insured if they sell one home and buy another, they can use the same insurance policy because it covers the person and not the home. Plus, if the insured dies, the beneficiary can use the death benefit for anything they wish. For example, your surviving spouse may decide to sell the home and move into a condo and spend the death benefit on paying off other things or starting a business.

If you prefer to assign your policy to your lender, you can do that, but make sure the assignment has the clause “at their interest may appear.” That way the lender must return the unearned portion of the death benefit to the beneficiary on your policy.

What are some FAQs that most People Ask?

woman with question mark

As with any insurance product, there are always questions being asked because everyone’s needs are typically different. Here are some FAQs about Mortgage Protection Insurance:

  1. Who does MPI cover? MPI covers the insured person or persons and not the home or the lender.
  2. What does MPI cover? MPI covers the life of the insured person or persons in the event they die during the policy period.
  3. How Much MPI do I need? It’s very simple to determine your face amount. You don’t need a mortgage protection insurance calculator because your coverage will be the amount of your mortgage balance.
  4. Who gets the death benefit? The death benefit is paid to the designated beneficiary or contingent beneficiary if the primary beneficiary does not survive the named insured.
  5. Will my insurance payment go down as my mortgage balance goes down? With a level term Mortgage Protection Insurance policy, your death benefit does not go down, so neither will your periodic payment.
  6. What if I refinance or change lenders? Your Mortgage Protection Insurance covers your life so who the lender is doesn’t matter. If you refinance your loan, the balance will typically be close to the original amount of the loan and your insurance should be sufficient.
  7. What if I sell my home and by another one? If you sell your home and then purchase another one with a much higher mortgage. You should consider buying an additional term insurance policy to supplement your Mortgage Protection Insurance policy.
  8. How much is mortgage protection insurance if I don’t want a medical exam? We represent several companies that offer no medical exam life insurance. In many cases, the premium is only slightly high than a fully underwritten policy. Most companies will, however, put a limit on the face amount of the policy if you don’t want a medical exam.

What if I become disabled and cannot Work?

This is a very good question because adults age 50 or younger have a greater chance of becoming disabled and unable to work than dying unexpectedly.

Many of the insurers that offer Mortgage Protection Insurance also offer a disability rider that will pay a monthly sum to policyholders who become disabled. The amount of your monthly benefit and the duration of payments will depend on the insurance company you select.

What other riders should I Consider?

Insurance riders are optional coverages that you can add to a life insurance policy in order to broaden your coverage and get living benefits. It is the best way to customize your policy to meet your individual needs and the needs of your family.

Critical Illness/Chronic Illness Rider

These riders provide for the insurance company to pay a lump-sum payment if you are diagnosed with a covered illness.

Return of Premium Rider

The return of premium rider is very popular for young families who are typically concerned about outliving their insurance company and then having nothing to show for it. When you add the Return of Premium (ROP) rider to your Mortgage Protection Insurance, the insurance company is obligated to return the entire premium you’ve paid on your policy if you are alive when the policy expires.

Your big fat return of premium check is tax-free and you can spend it however you wish!

Other Insured Term Rider

This optional rider allows the applicant to add a spouse to the policy with term insurance coverage up to the limit for the primary insured.

Children’s Term Rider

The children’s term rider allows the primary insured to provide term insurance coverage for all dependent children in the household and children that are born or adopted by the insured after the policy has been issued. Eligible children must be unmarried and age 15 days through 18-years old. Coverage terminates at age 25.

Mortgage Protection Insurance Unemployment Benefit Rider

This rider is triggered if you become unemployed through no fault of your own. If you are laid off or your employer closes its doors, your mortgage protection insurance unemployment benefit will kick in and help you get through the financial emergency.


How do I find the best rates on Mortgage Protection Insurance?


man with binoculars

We know that 20 years ago you would be on the phone most of the day to find the best rates for Mortgage Protection Insurance. Now, the internet will cut your shopping from all day to about 1 hour or less. 

You can easily start the process with the quoter on the side of this page.  Enter your info and click submit and you will be taken to another page that lists the best prices from about two dozen insurance companies. This will typically not be your final rate but it will provide a very good indication of what you’ll be paying for life insurance. You will need to provide additional information to determine your final mortgage protection insurance cost.

You can then contact the agent and complete the application over the phone and get a final rate for you to consider. If all goes well (and it usually does) you could easily have your policy in place in a week or two, not a month or two.


How much is Mortgage Protection Insurance?

Although mortgage protection insurance rates are based on the applicant’s age, health history, face amount, the term of coverage, and riders added to the policy, we can offer an indication of how much a policy will likely cost.

Here are actual rates for a 30-year $350,000 mortgage protection policy for a healthy male and female non-smoker:


Applicant's AgeMale Non-SmokerFemale Non-Smoker

To get mortgage protection insurance quotes for your actual age, feel free to use our instant term insurance quoter on the right side of the page or at the top if you’re on a mobile device.


Who we feel are the best Mortgage Protection Insurance Companies?

You will quickly discover that there are many mortgage protection insurance companies because any life insurance company that offers Term Life Insurance can be used to set up a Mortgage Protection Insurance plan but there is a subset of those companies that offer the important riders that should be considered part of your plan. Remember, these option riders allow you to broaden your protection and have access to living benefits. They allow you to customize your mortgage protection life insurance to meet your specific needs and budget.


AIG Review


AIG American General

AIG’s American General Life Insurance is one of the largest insurers worldwide and is currently serving over 13 million policyholders. While they have been in business for over 160 years, they have proven to be an excellent choice for any type of life insurance and are rated very high by AM Best.

American General has very competitive rates for term life insurance that would form the foundation for your Mortgage Protection insurance.


Assurity Life Insurance Company Review


Assurity Life

Assurity Life is another highly-rated and well-known life insurers that offers Mortgage Protection Insurance. They specialize in offering competitive MortgageProtection insurance with many available riders to customize your policy to meet your needs.



Foresters Life Insurance


Foresters Life Insurance Company

Foresters Life Insurance Company is a fraternal benefit company that focuses on helping its members with everyday financial challenges. The Foresters Term Product is an excellent way to purchase Mortgage Protection Insurance with terms of 10, 20, or 30-years with guaranteed rates. Foresters offers a fully underwritten and non-medical term product.


mutual of omaha


Mutual of Omaha | United of Omaha

Mutual of Omaha is one of the most recognized names in Life Insurance in America. The Term Life Express product offers significant protection for you to leave the funds needed to satisfy your mortgage in the event of your death. They also offer many bells and whistles (riders) so that you can broaden your coverage and get additional living benefits.


Protective Life logo


Protective Life

Protective Life is another highly-rated life insurer with roots planted more than 100 years ago. They are a value-driven company that offers a complete portfolio of life insurance products and are very competitive in the marketplace. Protective offers term life insurance starting at about $7.00 a month which leaves a lot of room in your budget to add valuable riders like critical illness and disability income.


North American Company logo

North American 

With A+ ratings at A.M. Best, S&P, and Fitch rating services, North American offers Mortgage Protection with face amounts up to $1,000,000 with no medical exam requirement. Their pricing is highly competitive and in many cases can get your policy approved and ready to issue within an hour.  We talked about paying your home off early, we were referring to cash value life insurance like indexed universal life insurance.  North American is a winner in this space.


Midland National Life Insurance Company


Midland National

As another 100-year old insurance company, Midland National understands the risk of leaving surviving loved ones with the burden of a mortgage payment should the primary breadwinner pass away. Although there are many uses for affordable Term Life Insurance, making certain your most valuable asset can be paid off in the event of your death should be at the top of your list. Midland National offers highly-competitive term insurance rates along with outstanding customer service.


Lincoln Review


Lincoln National

Lincoln National is a highly-rated life insurer that offers a complete portfolio of insurance and financial products. They are currently ranked #205 on the Fortune 500 list of companies for revenue and ranked 24th for the value of assets.

Lincoln offers TermAccel with up to a $1 million death benefit with no medical exam requirement through their accelerated underwriting program.  Their LifeElements term policy allows you to purchase face amounts of more than $1 million if you are 30 to 54-years old. Qualified applicants can purchase coverage with no lab work.


transamerica logo



Transamerica is a very well known company in the American insurance marketplace. Their iconic Pyramid shaped building on the San Francisco skyline is a testament to the size of the company in the insurance industry. Transamerica’s term products are a perfect fit for creating a well-rounded Mortgage Insurance Plan because of their competitive pricing, various riders, and outstanding customer service.


How Much Does Mortgage Protection Insurance Cost?


Like any other life insurance product, Mortgage Protection Insurance rates are primarily based on your age, health and the policy death benefit (face amount). Although the insurers we’ve listed above provide very similar policies, the rates differ for each company depending on the insurance costs and operation costs.

These rates are based on a healthy non-smoking male with a $300,000 30-year mortgage:

Applicant Age $300,000 Coverage *Disability Income $1,000 **Accelerated Death Benefit Total Monthly Premium
30 $24.36 $11.80 Included $36.16
35 $29.32 $14.85 Included $44.17
40 $43.94 $20.60 Included $64.54
45 $67.16 $30.38 Included $97.54
50 $111.01 $40.72 Included $151.73

*The disability income benefit rider provides for the insurer to pay the named insured a monthly benefit of $1.000, after the waiting period, if the insured becomes totally disabled before the insured turns 65-years old.

** The Accelerated Death Benefit provides for the insurer to pay the named insured an accelerated portion of the death benefit up to $250,000 if the insured becomes terminally ill or expected to live in a nursing facility until death. The remaining face amount must be at least $10,000.

Most insurance companies offer several other riders.  These riders will likely meet the needs of the applicant and fit within his or her budget as well. These additional option riders allow the policyholder to broaden their coverage and add living benefits to their Mortgage Protection Plan. 


Who Should Consider Mortgage Protection Insurance?

  • All new homeowners
  • Any homeowner that has life insurance only through their workplace
  • Any homeowner that has individual life insurance but did not consider the amount of their mortgage when they calculated their life insurance needs.
  • Any homeowner wanting to make certain that their mortgage is paid if the pass away or who is concerned about their ability to make their mortgage payment if they become disabled.


Who Might Pass on Mortgage Protection Insurance?

  • People who have a paid-for home
  • People who are renting and not buying a home
  • Anyone who has enough life insurance to meet the financial needs of their surviving loved ones and pay for their outstanding mortgage.
  • Single people without children and no surviving loved ones who would need to continue living in their home.


The Bottom Line on Mortgage Protection

Life insurance is not for everybody. In fact, about 40% of adults in American do not carry life insurance on a regular basis. These are the risk-takers in the world who may have the resources to replace what a life insurance policy provides.

But, if you are a homeowner or first-time buyer with a mortgage payment and want to mitigate the financial risk dying unexpectedly, we will be happy to filter through all of the carriers we represent in order to discover the best mortgage protection insurance company to accommodate your circumstances and budget.

The peace of mind you will get knowing that your surviving loved ones can continue to live in a paid-for home is well worth the moderate cost of mortgage protection insurance. You will soon discover that mortgage protection insurance rates vary from company to company, start by using the quoter on this page to get a quote.


Frequently asked questions

6 Responses

  1. Seeking Mortgage Death Benefit insurance for our property, ownder by my mother, who is 84.

  2. David,
    Unfortunately there is no mortgage term life insurance available at age 84.

  3. Hi Dorethea – Thanks for the call. Your application has been submitted and we will start working on your policy.

  4. My husband and I are closing on our first home on September 9th, 2021. We are looking for Mortgage protection insurance. Do we need separate policies? Or does mortgage protection insurance pay out if one of us dies?

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