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Why are insurance carriers continuing to remain under a moratorium for placing new policies?
- While most insurance carriers remain under a moratorium and are not willing to place new insurance policies in Collier and Lee Counties, a few have reopened. Most carriers continue to uncover the extent of hurricane damage which occurred in our area and are not expected to reopen in the immediate future. The driving force for remaining closed in the immediate future hinges on the carrier’s ability to secure and maintain reinsurance for their long-term financial strength.
When is the moratorium expected to end?
- Insurance carriers are waiting until 01/01/23 to negotiate their re-insurance contracts to determine the cost and availability of Property insurance. We are expecting to see the market establish more concise guidelines and adequate rate filings at that time.
Are rates expected to increase due to Hurricane Ian?
- While we have been in a “Hard Market” for several years, analysts are predicting this hard market will continue for some time with higher rates and fewer options due to Re-Insurance costs and limited capacity.
How can buyers who are under contract secure proper insurance at this time?
- Buyers should confirm if the property has been affected by Hurricane Ian. Homes which sustained water damage require the necessary water mitigation steps have been taken and documentation of the condition of the property via inspection.
- While NFIP Flood markets are open, Homeowners and Condo markets continue to be very limited. The few Home and Condo markets which are open may have less desirable terms and conditions with water and mold exclusions. Be sure that that your buyers have reviewed the terms carefully and are aware of any policy limitations.
What if the property sustained damage which the buyer intends to address after closing?
- Homes which experienced damage will need to be insured under a Builder’s Risk policy until the necessary repairs have been completed. Once the work has been completed, the policy can be rewritten to a Homeowners Form including contents.
- Ideally, if the seller addresses the necessary repairs prior to closing, buyers will have a better chance of securing proper Home and Condo coverage.
If the seller files a claim, can the new buyer secure insurance?
- Homes with open claims will not be eligible for a new policy until the claims are closed. Claims must be closed for new home buyers to secure proper coverage.
Is it true that if a homeowner files a Flood Claim, the Flood Insurance on that property goes up?
- The NFIP will not surcharge for one flood loss; however, after a second flood claim of $1,000 or more in a 10-year period, the property is considered a Repetitive Loss Property and will surcharge.
What is the difference between Flood and Wind claims?
- Flood claims are as a result of rising waters and storm surge. Flood adjusters will look at the water mark on the interior and exterior of the home to determine the extent of flooding.
- Wind claims are as a result of hurricane force winds which can cause wind driven rain, damage to the roof and structure where rainwater enters the home.
- Some homeowners have experienced a combination of the two, with homeowners and flood carriers paying their proportionate amount of the claim.
- While your buyers may be tempted to pay cash and close on a new property without insurance, please keep in mind they may have unrealistic expectations of insurance costs once the market re-opens. Additionally, we are still in hurricane season and will be self-insuring in the event of another storm.
- Obtaining Wind coverage on high valued properties is very limited. Homes which are mitigated with high impact windows or shutters, and properties which are maintained exceptionally well, will have the best results when shopping the market.
- Citizens is open and operating business as usual and will write homes and condos with a replacement value up to $700k.
- Time will tell how Hurricane Ian claims will impact the insurance market long-term. Stay tuned!
Andrea Pelletier, CPRIA, CPIA is Client Advisor and Partner at Gulfshore Insurance specializing in Private Risk Services. Andrea works with successful individuals and their families on creating and customizing package insurance solutions in the areas of luxury homes, car collections, jewelry, fine arts, watercraft, and personal excess liability. Comments and questions are welcome at email@example.com
Gulfshore Insurance is a Naples, Florida based insurance agency specializing in home and homeowners insurance, car and auto insurance, boat and yacht insurance, property insurance, umbrella insurance, valuables insurance for fine art, jewelry, wine, and more. Navigating insurance requires an experienced and trusted insurance agent who understands your high net worth risks and exposures. Gulfshore Insurance services Naples, North Naples, Port Royal, Park Shore, Pelican Bay, The Moorings, Naples Beach, Marco Island, Bonita Springs, Sanibel Island, Captiva, Fort Myers, Sarasota, and Southwest Florida. We have office locations in Naples, Fort Myers, Fort Lauderdale, and Sarasota.
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