What Is Force-Placed Insurance?
For home and condominium owners, the housing crisis brought a host of financial challenges, forcing many into or on the brink of foreclosure. Now, in addition to struggling with bank notices and loan modifications, the financial industry has added another compounding hardship for property owners: force-placed property insurance.
Force-placed property insurance has become something of a recent development arising out of the financial crisis. This is a mortgage or loan lender practice implemented mostly in states like Florida, New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey that were hit hardest by the housing crisis and were victims of recent natural disasters, like Hurricane Sandy. The property insurance required by the lender insures against natural disaster and human-inflicted damages.
Force Placed Homeowner's Insurance Can Raise Your Monthly Payments
While banks and lenders have a legal right to require contracted homeowners to safeguard the property with flood and similarly oriented insurance policies, the sudden addition of a new insurance premium can financially ruin the homeowner. In the case of force-placed insurance, the bank purchases the insurance policy after the homeowner's policy has lapsed, and forces the homeowner to pay the fees by way of a raised monthly escrow pamyents. Nearly always the force-placed insurance is exorbitantly more expensive than an equal coverage insurance policy handpicked by the homeowner.
For homeowners who are not paying their mortgage, which turns into not paying insurance premiums, the situation is created whereby the lender force places a property insurance policy upon the homeowner, and bills them extra for the addition. Often these implemented price premiums are gouging, excessive rates that allow mortgage and loan lenders to get financial kickbacks from the insurers. For homeowners trying to keep abreast of compounding payments and foreclosure notices, buying your own insurance policy can be the first step in lowering your overall mortgage payment. Property insurance is required by many county and city governments, but homeowners who shop around for the best rates and long term value can more often than not find an insurance carrier offering a lower premium. If you plan on keeping your home and have been issued a force-placed insurance premium, it is necessary to find a new insurance policy on your terms, and as soon as possible.
Shop Around For A Better Policy
If insurance policies and mortgage lenders have billed you for excessive property insurance policies, it is in your best interest to begin research for your own insurance. If you find a cheaper priced insurer, contact your state’s department of insurance and point out the rate disparity. Afterwards, notify your lender that you have obtained your own insurance so that the force-placed insurance may be cancelled.
While homeowners are responsible for finding a new policy, law firms like Amerihope Alliance Legal Services can help with lowering your overall mortgage payment through loan modification. Loan modifications are essential for homeowners who have suffered additional hardships that have interfered with a previous ability to pay, hardships including a sudden loss of wages, unexpected illnesses, or a death in the family. Or perhaps the housing crash caused your property to drop in value, leading to an increased interest rate. Loan modification is a process whereby a legal organization negotiates with the homeowner’s mortgage lender in order to establish a permanent change to existing mortgage terms in order to reduce monthly payments. For more information on force-placed insurance and help on reducing your monthly rates, contact a loan modification lawyer today.