I’m interupting my Mortgage Penalty blog posts to post this story that came to me this week from a fellow Invis Mortgage Agent about a real life story of one of her clients. This story really connected with me in how such a small quick decision to act can mean such a big difference to one’s family.
Lets face it talking about death, and life insurance, is not fun. As a Mortgage Broker we must (yes, required by law) present all clients with the opportunity to protect their family and loved ones with Mortgage Life Insurance with every mortgage we arrange.
To my fellow brokers,
Perhaps like many of you, 100% of my effort goes into a mortgage deal. The last thing I want is to push a client too much, perhaps lose them, because he or she felt I was trying to “sell” them insurance on top of the mortgage itself. Previously, I had only told people that it was their choice and they could choose to accept the insurance or waive it.
Something happened recently that changed my approach…
A couple with 3 children, with whom I am very good friends, purchased a home. They were previously renting property from relatives while the relatives were out of the country. They purchased their first home a few years ago, worth over $500,000, at 0%down. The father had excellent credit, which made the deal easy for me to put together.
Upon receiving the mortgage commitment, I took my usual approach of sending the client the paperwork. I explained where and what to sign, and that the Mortgage Life Insurance may be waived or accepted, and to please sign the bottom of the form regardless of the choice. I knew he was part of a union and thought that more than likely he had some type of coverage already.
Normally, this would be the end of my discussion with my clients regarding the Life Insurance. I’m not sure if it was fate, or just the fact that he was a good friend that made him feel compelled to call me. When he asked me if he should take the Mortgage Life Insurance I simply told him that I would never recommend to anyone NOT take it, but that it was his decision. I left it at that and the conversation changed to personal matters regarding family and our children’s soccer team which we enjoyed coaching together.
I’m sure that you can see where this is going. Sadly, one month to the day after he signed, his wonderful stay-at-home wife, and their 3 children (2 boys, ages 4 and 8, and daughter, age 15) moved into the home, he had a massive heart attack. He died in hospital shortly afterwards, giving his family just enough time to say their goodbyes to him. He was only 39 years old, no history of heart trouble, and not a person that you would suspect was a candidate for such problems.
I heard of the news only 2 days after he passed when his wife called me. After a fairly lengthy conversation paused by tears and crying on both of our parts, she told me that her lawyer wanted her to ask me if her husband took Mortgage Life Insurance. I was truly in shock of his death, so I couldn’t remember, and didn’t want to give her an answer unless I was absolutely certain. I got off the phone and searched through my file, hands shaking, and eyes blurred from tears. I felt her pain, and empathized for her, and painful thoughts went through my head: how the children were losing their
father… what if he didn’t take the insurance?
The probable outcome that the children would lose their mother to a full-time job, and would have to move to a smaller place because there was no way she would be able to afford to stay in that house, even if he had a two year death benefit. Eventually the well would run dry. I then felt a huge sense of relief when I found the accepted and signed Mortgage Life Insurance form, while still feeling a terrible sense of loss for the family.
It is now just over two years since he passed away. Their home was paid out by the Mortgage Insurance company. Though the family still struggles with the emotional loss of a husband and father, my friend was able to keep her home and the children didn’t lose more than they already had. She was able to continue to be a stay-at-home mom while upgrading her education and continues to drive her kids to and from school. Their family still goes on vacation once a year, perhaps not to extravagant places, but they go.
The children are happy and well adjusted, and play sports as they used to. “What ifs” really can happen. When that spouse calls in his or her time of loss, barely able to string together a sentence without sobbing, it would be even more painful to have to inform them that the rest of their world is about to fall apart as well. That is what I was faced with, and sadly at some point, you may likely be faced with a similar situation.
I do not use high-pressure tactics with clients. However, I always strongly recommend accepting the Insurance; if they decline, I now ask them regarding what type of insurance they currently have. If the coverage isn’t adequate enough to maintain the home and lifestyle that they currently have, I tell them this story.
With our dedication, we are already invested 100% in our clients’ best interests. Emphasizing the importance of Mortgage Insurance is a valuable part of that 100%. It can make a significant difference in the quality of life for our clients down the road… with just a few extra moments spent on the deal now.