Brokers express mixed feelings over MPPI

The industry has mixed attitudes to mortgage payment protection insurance, research by Assurant Solutions and CETA has revealed.

The survey shows that 89% of respondents continue to sell MPPI despite the increased scrutiny that the product has faced from the FSA and other consumer bodies.

Additionally, one third of those surveyed believe the product has become more difficult to sell since the FSA assumed responsibility for regulating both the mortgage and general insurance industries.

A quarter believe the product does meet the needs of consumers, however, 75% suggest more needs to be done to improve its flexibility, affordability, and saleability.

Worryingly, 82% of all respondents believe there is a lack of understanding amongst consumers about MPPI.

David Quick, managing director at CETA, says: Our members have sent a clear message through this survey that while MPPI does have a role to play, it must represent value for money and become a more affordable option to the consumer.

“Equally important, the product itself must sit comfortably with their individual needs if it is to become an option of choice. If insurers can address these fundamental points, then I think well see a very different attitude towards saleability on any future survey.

Ian Moffatt, sales and marketing director at Assurant Solutions, adds: We were greatly encouraged to see so many brokers are actively promoting the product, particularly as the FSA confirmed that it sees a real need for MPPI and gave brokers a relatively clean bill of health in its thematic review. However, this does contradict anecdotal evidence that indicates many have stopped selling it.

In our view, brokers and intermediaries offer a far greater choice to consumers looking for financial solutions to suit their individual circumstance, and consumers should not be denied access to the best source of advice and options to protect themselves.

“There has been a lot of good work done by many over recent months to develop enhancements to this product that offer real value both to brokers and their customers, but clearly we must look closely at each stage in the lifecycle of the product if we are to help brokers and intermediaries to continue to deliver the right solutions for the customers.