If you own a home or property in Florida, you may be aware of the work of Citizens Property Insurance, a quasi-governmental entity that has provided insurance coverage to millions of residents in the state. However, recent efforts have been made to transfer many of these policies to private insurers, a process that hasn’t always been transparent. And now, for the first time since 2006, Citizens Insurance has dropped its policyholders to fewer than 1 million.
Although Citizens Insurance does not necessarily have a strong track record of customer satisfaction, the fact remains that many of the private insurers receiving these new policies may be no better — and in some cases, could be worse. And while this transfer of policies used to be optional, recent laws have made going to the private market a mandatory action, as long as you can find cheaper premiums.
Take Homeowners Choice Property & Casualty Insurance Company, for example, which had 80 formal complaints with the Florida Department of Insurance in 2012. That’s not to say this company doesn’t serve its policyholders well, but there are simply some questions to be answered. Namely, who’s to say that the private insurers can handle the influx? And could policyholders be subject to further “dumping” in the future?
Making sure you’re covered
If you are forced to switch to a different insurer, you need to make sure that your new policy covers everything you need it to. You should also examine how the changes could impact your premiums, both now and in the years to come. Picking the cheapest possible option isn’t always the best choice, as you may end up paying much more if damage occurs to your property down the road.
The goal of Citizens Property Insurance is to relieve some of its financial strains by decreasing its claim exposure, which it is now doing. Ultimately, the result should be that it rebuilds its reserve capital in preparation for future claims. However, Florida residents have been fortunate to avoid experiencing major natural disasters in the past few years, and yet premiums continue to rise — making this issue even more political.
If you’ve been left confused by the changes going on at Citizens, or would like to know for sure what your plan does and does not cover, speak with a Broward County public adjuster. When you do, you’ll receive unbiased information to help you make sound decisions about your Florida homeowners’ insurance.
The team at Advocate Claims Public Adjusters works with home and business owners across the state of Florida, including Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Hollywood, West Palm Beach and the surrounding communities. Call us today at 1-954-369-0573 or contact us online.