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DEFINITION of 'Mortgage Life Insurance'

An insurance policy designed specifically to repay mortgage debt in the event of the death of the borrower. These policies differ from traditional life insurance policies in that, for a traditional policy, the death benefit is paid out when the borrower dies; however, a mortgage life insurance policy doesn't pay unless the borrower dies while the mortgage itself is still in existence.

BREAKING DOWN 'Mortgage Life Insurance'

There are two basic types of mortgage life insurance: decreasing term insurance, where the size of the policy decreases with the outstanding balance of the mortgage until both reach zero; and level term insurance, where the size of the policy does not decrease. Level term insurance would be appropriate for a borrower with an interest-only mortgage.

Before buying mortgage life insurance, you should carefully examine and analyze the terms, costs and benefits of the policy. Remember, there are two lifespans to consider - your lifespan and the mortgage's.

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