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Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Rates Might Be Increasing

In response to the increasing water damage claims, many Florida insurance companies are looking to offset their costs by increasing their premiums. 16 insurance companies so far have secured permission from the Office of Insurance Regulation to increase their homeowners insurance rates. 8 of these increases will go into effect on September 1, 2016, while the other 8 have already gone into effect. 9 more insurance companies have received permission to increase their rates and will do so by the end of November. So if you live in Florida, you can expect your insurance rates to go up soon if they have not already.

The Cost Of Water Damage

These insurance rate hikes are a result of the increasing cost of water damage coverage. Water damage coverage has long been costly for Southern Florida residents, but has now become a statewide issue. Insurance companies claim the issue comes from a state law that allows policyholders to contract their benefits to a third party, such as a contractor or repair man. These third parties are then able to collect insurance payments directly from the insurance companies. With this policy in place, since 2010, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation has seen an average of a 28% increase of water damage claims statewide every year. However, in this last year, claims skyrocketed, seeing an increase of a whopping 46%. With so many claims being made, insurance companies have to raise rates in order to afford the increasing risks.

The Rate Percentage Increase

The rate increase you will see on your monthly bill will depend entirely on your individual insurance company. On average though, inland homes with multi-peril coverage will see an increase of a 6.3%. While coastal homeowners with multi-peril coverages will see an average increase of 8.6%. These rates were initially requested to be much higher, with some insurance companies asking for a 25% premium increase. However, these higher requests were denied by Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmeir after state regulators proved they were unreasonable.

What Does Rising Insurance Rates Mean For Homeowners?

With increasing rates, many homeowners will seek to lower their premiums by reducing other coverages. That means they may reduce necessary homeowner coverages like liability coverage to protect them against injuries incurred on their properties. So homeowners who cannot afford the increased rates may end up exposing themselves to unnecessary risk. Even though these insurance increases do not deal directly with property liability coverage, they will definitely have an impact on it.

Impact On Property Liability

So if you are one of the millions of Florida residents who experience a rate hike this Fall, you need to be careful about how you offset the costs of your homeowners insurance so you don’t expose yourself to unnecessary liability. With a nearly 10% increase in costs, it may be very tempting to find a way to reduce your monthly bill. However, if someone is injured on your property, you could really leave yourself exposed to financial risk. Furthermore, with other homeowners reducing their property liability, if you are injured on someone else’s property, it may be more difficult to get a settlement for your claim. So ultimately these rates will have a trickle-down impact that impact property liability.

No matter what happens with Florida insurance rates, our attorneys at , Goldman, Babboni, & Walsh will be there for you. Whether you experience an injury on someone else’s property and are worried you won’t be covered or your own insurance company is not paying their fair dues, we’ve got the knowledge and experience to help make sure your premises liability needs are covered!

Michael J. Babboni's wide-ranging legal career is based on the strong belief that everyone should be treated fairly and have access to effective legal help. Michael began putting his beliefs in action by helping the people of St. Petersburg Florida get what they are owed in civil trials fighting to protect families by making corporations pay, and honor their obligations.

Your Florida Homeowners Insurance Rates Might Be Increasing

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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