Florida residents face increased property insurance rates

Hanah Lopes

Floridians have been feeling the squeeze of double-digit rate increases for property insurance.Some have faced policy cancellations while others are having to pay out of pocket for a new roof before they can get a new policy.Tuesday, one insurer asked state regulators to sign off on a nearly 50% rate hike on its homeowners policies.The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation held a hearing during which the Florida Farm Bureau asked to hike its homeowner policy rate by 48.7%.First Floridian sought approval for a 22.9% increase and Kin Interinsurance wants to hike its rates 25.1%.The large rate increase requests underscore the precarious nature of the state’s property insurance market.Insurers say the crisis is manmade — a result of a surge in litigation, rising rates of reinsurance and even fraud.Related: Florida’s frustrating home insurance situation stands as barrier to buying for manyWESH 2 Investigates: Central Florida residents stunned by soaring home insurance premiumsNext week, Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered lawmakers back to the capitol for a week-long special session to pass legislation to stabilize the market.Many people will be watching the session closely.”It’s just gotten very difficult to place coverage, to get coverage here in the state of Florida and any help we could get with that would be tremendous,” said Andy Ray, an insurance agent in Altamonte Springs.Ray said many of his clients are struggling. He hopes the upcoming session will lead to some relief, and so does attorney Andreas Study with Farah and Farah, who represents homeowners who file claims with their insurers.”I hope they’re able to take a balanced approach to it and put together some legislation that’s going to help create a healthy insurance market but not at the cost of policy holder’s rights or homeowners rights,” Study said.Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered lawmakers back to the Capitol for a weeklong special session starting May 23 to pass legislation to stabilize the market.Related: Florida property insurance company goes under, leaving policy holders scramblingRelated: $600 million fund available to help Florida residents struggling to save their homes

Floridians have been feeling the squeeze of double-digit rate increases for property insurance.

Some have faced policy cancellations while others are having to pay out of pocket for a new roof before they can get a new policy.

Tuesday, one insurer asked state regulators to sign off on a nearly 50% rate hike on its homeowners policies.

The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation held a hearing during which the Florida Farm Bureau asked to hike its homeowner policy rate by 48.7%.

First Floridian sought approval for a 22.9% increase and Kin Interinsurance wants to hike its rates 25.1%.

The large rate increase requests underscore the precarious nature of the state’s property insurance market.

Insurers say the crisis is manmade — a result of a surge in litigation, rising rates of reinsurance and even fraud.

Related: Florida’s frustrating home insurance situation stands as barrier to buying for many

WESH 2 Investigates: Central Florida residents stunned by soaring home insurance premiums

Next week, Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered lawmakers back to the capitol for a week-long special session to pass legislation to stabilize the market.

Many people will be watching the session closely.

“It’s just gotten very difficult to place coverage, to get coverage here in the state of Florida and any help we could get with that would be tremendous,” said Andy Ray, an insurance agent in Altamonte Springs.

Ray said many of his clients are struggling.

He hopes the upcoming session will lead to some relief, and so does attorney Andreas Study with Farah and Farah, who represents homeowners who file claims with their insurers.

“I hope they’re able to take a balanced approach to it and put together some legislation that’s going to help create a healthy insurance market but not at the cost of policy holder’s rights or homeowners rights,” Study said.

Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered lawmakers back to the Capitol for a weeklong special session starting May 23 to pass legislation to stabilize the market.

Related: Florida property insurance company goes under, leaving policy holders scrambling

Related: $600 million fund available to help Florida residents struggling to save their homes

https://www.wesh.com/article/florida-residents-insurance-rates/40025941

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