Why is my mortgage company charging me for force-placed Homeowners Insurance?

Hazard Insurance

You should have your own homeowners insurance, commonly called hazard insurance by mortgage companies, make sure that the mortgage company name, mortgagee clause and loan account number are listed on your policy.

If you presently don’t have homeowners insurance, here are a few tips:

  1. Contact your insurance company as soon as possible and buy a new homeowners insurance policy, or if recently expired, ask to have your old policy reinstated. If your mortgage company doesn’t receive a copy of your in-force policy with the mortgage company listed as ‘Mortgagee’, you will pay for costly force-placed hazard insurance.
  2. Once you have a new or reinstated homeowners insurance policy in place, be sure to ask your insurance company to send proof of insurance to your mortgage company as soon as possible. Once received, your mortgage company will most likely cancel the force-placed insurance policy using the same date as the effective date of your new or reinstated insurance policy.
  3. If you disagree with an action your mortgage servicer took with your insurance, it would be best advised to send a notice of error stating your disagreement and proof of documentation.

Hazard Insurance

Your servicer may require force-placed insurance when you do not have your own insurance policy or if your own policy doesn’t meet the requirements of your mortgage contract. In many instances, this insurance protects only the lender, not you. The servicer will charge you for the insurance. Force-placed insurance is usually more expensive than finding an insurance policy yourself.

Homeowners Insurance Online

If your homeowners insurance coverage was cancelled because your mortgage servicer failed to make timely insurance premium payments from your impound or escrow account, you may need to consult an attorney for assistance.

Whether your insurance is paid through an impound/escrow account or if you pay your homeowners insurance yourself, it is essential to make sure that all details are in order and your insurance premium gets paid.  In some areas of the country, insurance carriers may have withdrawn from writing insurance although they still be allowing the renewal of policies on the books; this could leave a homeowner uninsured in the preferred marketplace and ultimately paying much more premium in the future.

If you have a problem with your mortgage, you can submit a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or you may call:  (855)411-2372