Greetings – BAIS Client Family,
I hope you are staying healthy. One of our goals at Bay Area Insurance Shop is to educate our clients in matters of insurance. Recently, I have had many clients approach me with questions regarding the steep increases in Florida’s property insurance rates. I decided that many of you may have the same question whether you have property insurance with us or another agent. I wanted to share some insights on the matter and how you can get involved. If you do not own a home but are considering purchasing one, this information is valuable to you too.
As you review this information, please keep in mind that insurance premiums must be approved by the state legislature. Most of us understand the rate increases caused by claims or a busy storm season. However, recently, we are seeing other factors impacting the rate increases that we are seeing They include two that are quite concerning:
- There are frivolous lawsuits being filed by trial attorneys with fee multipliers equal to 2-3 times the hourly rate for an average attorney. The attorney can earn six-figure fees on a $10K settlement–none of which is shared with the policyholder.
- Thousands of claims are being reported with roof damage that appears to be general wear-and-tear or maintenance-related as opposed to damage with causes covered by peril insurance (including fire, lightning, windstorms, etc.). Costs are rising due to lawsuits being filed for damages caused by a hurricane that made landfall over three years ago.
The implications of the above have many businesses and homeowners calling for reform. Some of the most sought-after changes include ending fee multipliers for lawyers who are receiving egregious paydays from run-of-the-mill lawsuits, adding additional, affordable options for roof coverage for consumers, and reducing the statute of limitations for filing claims–meaning damage should be reported immediately, not 3-5 years after it occurs.
Fortunately, there are actions we can take as citizens to try and combat these rate increases. Here are some simple ways you can make an impact:
- Reach out to your legislators today and let them know how much your premium has increased this year!
- Encourage their support of legislation that aims to achieve the much-needed reforms listed above.
- Follow the Floridians for Lawsuit Reform Advocacy Group and sign the petition to make your voice heard.
- Tell your family and friends about the cause–if they live in Florida, their premiums are also going up.
If our state does not act on the issues I have mentioned, your homeowner rates will continue to increase by double digits for the foreseeable future. Getting involved only takes a couple of minutes of your time–and the impacts are far-reaching for homeowners across Florida.
If you have any questions or concerns about your homeowner’s renewal rate, please do not hesitate to contact our office at (727) 446-4416, through text at (727) 479-0219, or by visiting our website bayareainsuranceshop.com. Although our options are limited, we will do what we can to help you get your rate down.