Q: My mortgage went up a few months back by $16 or so each month. I assume it is because of the escrow, but I don’t know why.

Should I call mortgage company and ask them why my mortgage is higher?

A: It’s possible that the increase in your escrow reflects a rise in your property taxes. The mortgage servicing company is allowed to hold onto enough cash to pay the bill plus two months extra (just in case taxes jump way up). It’s also possible that your homeowners insurance has gone up and the increase reflects this.

I’m surprised your mortgage statement doesn’t reveal more information. By all means, pick up the phone and call your mortgage servicer’s toll-free number that’s listed. You have a right to know what you’re paying for.

June 3, 2005.