Life cover sales up as brokers get into cross-selling mode

Insurers say research showing only one-third of new mortgages are without life cover is a sign that brokers are starting to offer more cover.

Last year the Association of British Insurers recorded 636,973 new mortgage-related life assurance policies written, but the Council of Mortgage

Lenders recorded 925,000 new mortgage advances.

Financial research firm Defaqto says that with unemployment on the rise, this is a key time for consu-mers to make provisions against sickness, critical illness and loss of income.

Ben Heffer, insight analyst for protection at Defaqto, says that in some circumstances life cover is not required.

He adds: “The protection gap does not just apply to life cover. It is also a problem when you look at income replacement products, with little income protection being sold.”

But Kevin Paterson, sales and marketing director at Assurant Intermediary, says: “I am encoura-ged by the numbers because in previous years, the penetration of life cover to mortgage sales would have been well below the almost 70% quoted here. It shows brokers are becoming more adept at crossselling in the tough environment.”