Florida homeowners insured by Citizens will see their premiums increase. Citizens Homeowners rates are going to increase by 6.3%. State regulators approved an increase in homeowner’s rates that followed the statewide average. Homeowners with multiperil policies will see a 4.4% increase, which amount to around one hundred and eleven dollars ($111) per policy. Those homeowners that have wind-only policies will see a 10.5% increase on average, which amount to around two-hundred and sixty-five dollars ($265) per policy holder.
Citizens maintained that exposure to hurricanes and sinkholes were the “major drivers” behind the need for the rate hikes this year.
These rate changes will take effect in January, 2014, although the wind-only policy homeowner’s rates will change come February, 2014. These rates are increasing for the fourth consecutive year.
The good news for some homeowners with regards to higher rates is that your policy may never see the rate increase. By the end of November, which also happens to be the end of hurricane season Citizens will remove 400,000 policies to ten different insurers. On top of these 400,000 policy holders, Citizens is now in the process of getting rid of another 200,000 policy holders this December between eight separate insurers. This means that 600,000 policies will be unloaded before the New Year, and the policy holders will not be affected by the rate increase to these homeowner’s policies.
On top of all these changes, Citizens is establishing a clearinghouse, which will allow for policies to be shopped to the private market rather than given away like they are now. This is supposed to be better for homeowners as it will allow them a chance to pick which private insurance company they choose. This is in the hopes that Citizens will be able to unload a more significant amount of policies in their attempt to downsize. All homeowners with a Citizens policy should be aware of the ongoing changes with Citizens and be on the look out for all notices regarding your home insurance policy.
Please do not hesitate to contact our office to discuss your insurance claim needs.