Berkeley Alexander has devised a low-cost income protection product after government research revealed that 70% of mortgage payers would be ineligible for state help if they lost their jobs.

State help for the unemployed is limited to less than £60 per week for a single person and £96 for two adults with two children.

But the government estimated that up to 70% of unemployed mortgage borrowers would not get income support due to savings or because they have a working partner.

Safetynet from Berkeley Alex-ander guarantees an income of £1,000 per month in the event of unemployment, for a premium of £26 for 12 months' of cover, or £32 for two years' protection.

General manager Geoff Hall said: “An unemployed or disabled person can no longer rely on the state to pay for their home.

“Our protection policy will provide up to 75% of average gross earnings for up to two years.”