In Florida, you can rely on three things with certainty—death, taxes, and high property insurance premiums. The reason for the latter is the subject of an intense debate that plays itself out in the halls of Tallahassee and on the editorial pages of our leading newspapers. I will not rehash the debate; our blog archives are full of articles on that subject. However, I want to highlight an article in the Sun-Sentinel I recently came across: Insurers widening lists of things they won’t cover.
Unfortunately, this article lists some specific examples of (soon to be) ineligible risks:
- Risks with aluminum single strand (solid) wiring (Federated National).
- Applicants with a prior water damage loss of $10,000 or more in the last three years (Federated National).
- Risks that do not show pride in ownership or are in a state of disrepair (People’s Trust).
- Risks with roofs that exceed their maximum useful life expectancy (People’s Trust).
- A felony conviction by any household member in the past 10 years (Nationwide).
- Seasonal dwellings that are unoccupied for three or more consecutive months in a year if they are beach properties or located in congested resort neighborhoods (Stillwater).
- Applicants who own all terrain vehicles (Stillwater).
- Swimming pools with diving boards or slides (Stillwater).
- A dog(s) known to be nervous or temperamental (Stillwater).
- Homes with wood shingled roofs (Heritage).
- Isolated properties, defined as those that are not visible from at least two dwellings or in sight of a public road (American Integrity).
These “new” risks are in addition to previous policy changes relating to water losses proposed by Citizens Property Insurance.
The fact that Floridians are paying more in premiums for less coverage cannot be denied despite debate as to the cause. Regardless of your political persuasion, POLITIFACT did a good analysis of the issue that gives voice to both sides of this issue.
Whether you side with the insurance industry, consumer advocates, attorneys or adjusters, one thing is for certain—we have to figure this property insurance conundrum out before Florida is hit by another hurricane. If we don’t—the People will demand to know why we didn’t.