What You Need to Know About Homeowners’ Insurance in Florida

Homeowners insurance fla is one of the vital things any Florida homeowner should take into consideration. Its geographic location makes it more susceptible to natural disasters including hurricanes, storms, and tornadoes; all of which are capable of causing structural damage and loss. Those are just some of the examples for possible liabilities; they are factored into the cost and value of the home insurance. It is important to note that each house is quoted differently based on the factors including age, construction, design, as well as the location. The quotes also vary according to the company.

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History of the Homeowners Insurance Industry

Florida has been a tough market for the homeowner insurance industry. The uncertainty of the weather and the vast expanse of the coastline make the state highly susceptible to flooding and they also have a history of sinkholes over the years which resulted to billions of dollars in insurance claims. These losses in the insurance companies resulted to insurers having to stop writing insurance policies; while others declared bankruptcy. Insurance companies that are still thriving in the industry have increased their rates and limited the types of policies available for Florida homes.

Homeowners Insurance Companies

Because of the continued loss and liabilities, many homeowners’ insurance companies have stopped offering coverage policies to homeowners in Florida. This trend resulted to homeowners having only limited or few options for Fla homeowners insurance by county. With only a few insurance options, the federal government of Florida established the Citizens Property Insurance Company, a state-operated insurer which served as the Floridians last resort. Although a number of insurance companies are still willing to write a limited number of insurance coverage policies in Florida, residents who cannot get home insurance elsewhere may apply for a policy from Citizens. As of the fiscal year 2009 to 2010, Citizens have over 16% of all home insurance policies in the state. Meanwhile, State Farm Insurance Company held the second spot with about 13%.

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Cost Factors

With a lot of factors considered when calculating how much is home insurance in Fl. Some of these factors actually include geographic location, applicable flood area, age of the house, method of home construction, home design, home updates or remodeling, frequency of storms, as well as the history of claims. All of these factors and many more affect the cost of homeowners’ insurance premiums, as well as the insurance policy itself. One of the most common factors that help reduce the cost of insurance is the installing home protection devices including storm windows, shutters, and other customized storm and hurricane protection equipment.

The Cost of Insurance Premiums

Although the actual cost of fl homeowners insurance average premiums can be impossible to calculate, Florida has provided an example of how much a policy costs. For instance, a masonry home located at the county of Brevard which was built after 2005 has a replacement value of about $300,000. It has a non-hurricane deductible amounting to $500, a 2% hurricane deductible (having no claims in the last 3 years, and minimum premium discounts for their wind protection features —- its annual premium costs of $1,366 to $3,027 depending on the company.

Getting Discounts on Homeowners’ Insurance

Like most people in Florida, you are probably already paying much on mortgage. Thus, you’d find it entirely unnecessary to pay high insurance premiums in order to have adequate insurance coverage. Here are some tips of how to lower insurance premiums.

  • Keep a good credit history. Most insurance companies charge higher insurance premiums when you have poor credit.
  • Look for companies that give affordable insurance rates. It doesn’t actually matter if you are on the verge of purchasing a new home or you already own one, but you should always lookout for affordable policy rates. You can look for quotes through various website.
  • Install fireproof equipment in your home. When you take preventative measures, these will go favorably on your favor and may result in lower insurance premium rates. Ensure that you install smoke detecting alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire extinguishers. Additionally, install sprinklers on your yard.
  • Inquire from your insurance company about multi-policy discounts. Most insurance companies will give you discounts from your premiums if you obtain more than 1 policy from their company. It might be advisable that you get homeowners’ insurance from where you acquired your auto insurance policy. Note, however, that some insurance companies specialize.
  • Decide whether you want higher deductibles on your insurance premiums. If you could pay for a higher deductible when you have to file insurance claims, you may have to increase your deductibles and reduce your lower insurance premiums.
  • Consider a theft alarm system installation in your home if you don’t have one yet. More often than not, insurance providers lower your insurance premiums if you installed alarm systems; since it would be less likely for your home to be intruded by a criminal if you have them installed. Also, you should inform your insurance company that you actually have the system installed.
  • If you are actually building or remodeling your house, it would be wise for you to talk to your contractor and determine the materials and methods that can withstand hurricanes, tornadoes, and fire.

Considerations

Homeowners’ insurance companies are regulated by the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation. They are responsible for the implementation and the compliance of all companies and can help homeowners about their concerns and complain regarding the home insurance. Aside from that, they also offer a wide range of information that helps homeowners in looking for a home insurance.

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