Layoff insurance rears its head in home sales

I’m surprised it’s taken this long for someone to take the auto industry’s “buyer reassurance” plan and translate it into the homebuying industry, but it has:

LifeStyle Builders and Developers, Inc., a Richmond based homebuilder, has announced a new job loss mortgage protection program, Mortgage Guardian. Under this program, if a homeowner becomes involuntarily unemployed, $1,500 of their mortgage will be covered for up to six months.

“For anyone who has even thought about buying a new home, now really is the best time to take action. There is a large selection of available inventory, and prices are at an all-time value. However, with today’s economic climate, many people are hesitant to take that step towards home ownership. We hope that our Mortgage Guardian program will ease the stress and concern about possible job loss, and give homebuyers the confidence to take advantage of today’s great real estate deals.” said Lloyd Poe, owner of LifeStyle Builders.

LifeStyle Builders’ Mortgage Guardian offers coverage for 12 months from the closing date, and a maximum benefit of $1,500 per month, in cash, payable to the homeowner, for up to six months. An additional feature is a $10,000 Accidental Death Benefit. LifeStyle Builders will automatically include Mortgage Guardian with all contracts written after May 1 at no cost to the new homeowner.

Since analysts and brokers agree that declining consumer confidence is the biggest challenge before the Wichita housing market, it shouldn’t be long before a homebuilder duplicates this program here.