Gulfshore Insurance > Gulfshore Blog > Condo Associations

Following the recent devastation and flooding in Louisiana over the past few weeks, many are now facing the arduous task of removing debris from their properties and submitting insurance claims. Believe it or not, “debris” accounts for roughly 27% of the total cost of a disaster. Yet, debris management remains one of the most overlooked and least-planned-for components of disaster response and recovery.

FEMA recently issued a bulletin that outlines a policyholder’s responsibilities in the event of a loss. The Fact Sheet provided by FEMA details how you should report a flood claim; what to document in the aftermath of a disaster; how to properly document and dispose of debris/damaged property; where to get help; and more.

Please keep in mind, there are specific responsibilities that need to be followed in the event of a loss to ensure proper payment of claims.

Debris Removal Guidelines

 

Click here to view the full memorandum from FEMA. Our in-house staff of experienced flood insurance professionals is available to handle your questions and provide guidance.

Alligator LiabilityAnyone who has ever lived in Florida knows that alligators are a pervasive feature in communities throughout the state. Florida is alligator country. There are 1.3 million wild alligators. That is roughly one for every 15 residents. Alligators may occur anywhere there is water—lakes, ponds, rivers, marshes, swamps, and even man-made canals. Although almost exclusively a fresh-water species, they have been found in brackish and salt waters.

The recent tragic incident involving a young child at a Florida theme park has raised questions about whether associations are responsible for warning residents about the possible danger of alligators.

Legal experts have commented that the association, as land owner, could be held liable and negligent for allowing licensees and invitees to enter an area where risk of injury by a dangerous condition is foreseeable and not warning those individuals of that danger.

If your association knows of alligators on the premises, reasonable precautions should be taken in concert with advice from the association’s legal counsel and its insurers. Reasonable precautions might include, among other things, the posting of signs warning of the possible presence of alligators. Consideration might also be given to addressing other dangerous animals that might inhabit the property, such as poisonous snakes. In light of recent tragic events involving gators, preventative actions could not only prove to be vital in the control of the risk, but also a prudent measure in public opinion. There is no current mandate for signage nor do liability policies currently contain a condition that would exclude coverage should a claim of this nature occur. However, insurance policies and terms are constantly evolving. Given recent events, it would not be surprising to see insurance carriers address this exposure in the future. At present, the decision falls on the Board to decide whether action or inaction best protects the entire community.

Associations can contact the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission’s nuisance alligator program for removal of alligators that might constitute a nuisance or pose a threat. The nuisance alligator hotline can be reached at 866-FWC-GATOR, and more information about the program is available online at www.myfwc.com.


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What a difference a year can make! Nearly all property premiums in 2015 (excluding flood insurance), saw significant decreases due to more insurance companies entering the property market and a competitive reinsurance market place. 

For many associations, insurance premiums are their largest overhead cost, so it’s very important to accurately forecast any changes for the coming year. Many factors in the marketplace affect insurance premiums which makes it challenging to budget this line item.

Each year, we list several market conditions and trends that impact your insurance renewal premiums, providing you with an educated look at how they may increase or decrease your association’s 2016 budget.

Our goal is to properly protect the assets of the association with financially viable insurance at the most competitive cost. Budgeting requires that we take a closer look at your policies, coverages, appraisals, and market conditions, then project our best estimate of where the costs will be at your next renewal.

Factors to consider when preparing your 2016 insurance budget: Read more

Insurance premiums, for many associations, are their largest overhead cost; which is why it is very important to accurately forecast any changes for the upcoming year. Many factors in the marketplace effect insurance premiums making it challenging to budget this line item.

In this article, we list out 8 market conditions and trends that impact your insurance renewal premiums and provide you with an educated look at how it will increase or decrease the amount you budget for in 2015.

Our goal is to properly protect the assets of the association with financially viable insurance at the most competitive cost. Budgeting, requires that we take a closer look at your policies, coverages, appraisals, and market conditions and then project our best estimate of where the costs will be at your next renewal.

Factors to Consider When Budgeting for Insurance

1. Property Rates Stabilized in 2014 and are expected to remain soft in 2015. A select set of risks are even beginning to show decreased rates. Since many factors impact the final property rates, we suggest budgeting around 5% increase for property insurance premiums. Assuming a “flat” renewal rate, this would include some consideration for replacement cost values beginning to go up. Read more

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Well, here we are, it’s that time of year when we start receiving calls from our condominium association managers and Boards of Directors requesting us to pull out our crystal ball and provide the 2014 insurance budgets!

Have you been wondering what you can expect in 2014? We’re breaking down what you can expect as you begin the planning process.

When we prepare a budget for any association, it is primarily for the purpose of providing you with the most accurate “indication” of possible insurance renewal premiums utilizing our knowledge of the most current market conditions and trends.

Our goal is to properly protect the assets of the association with financially viable insurance at the most competitive cost. Budgeting, requires that we take a closer look at your policies, coverages, appraisals, and market conditions and then project our best estimate of where the costs will be at your next renewal. Read more