Look at the Very Best
Search the Book Shelves
Do you have a mortgage on your home and make monthly house payments? Or, does one of your children fit that category?
Then a new bill making its way through the U.S. Congress could save you and/or your child some money.
Chances are that your house payment includes an amount each month to pay premiums on "private mortgage insurance", or PMI.
If the mortgage on your home is more than 80 percent of the property's value, your lender is allowed to purchase PMI policy from a private insurer to repay them any loss they take if you should default on your mortgage. PMI allows a lender to make a loan on a home with as little as 3 percent down payment. Thus, many young families are able to purchase a home years before they're able to save the usually "standard" 20 percent down payment.
Many senior citizens bought their home years ago and have paid down the mortgage over the years. At the same time inflation has caused the value to your property to rise. Now, you're likely to have more than the 20% required equity and your lender should not be charging you monthly premiums on a PMI policy.
But... just try to get your lender to remove the PMI portion of your monthly house payment. You'll probably have problems from the word go getting them to cooperate.
James Hansen, a Republican congressman from Utah had exactly that problem. Hansen, however, is in a better position to do something about the problem than most of us. He has introduced a bill in congress which will force lenders to automatically remove this insurance premium when your home equity justifies it.
Congressman Hansen's bill passed the House of Representatives this week by a 421-7 vote. It now goes to the Senate where the big lenders have much more direct clout than in the House. You will do well to send your senator a note and express your wishes as to how he will vote on this issue.
You can send email right now... directly to your senator... from The Senior Center directory on the left at the top of this page.
It could mean "money in your pocket!"
Return to The Senior Center