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IWhat Stakeholders Are Saying About The Florida Insurance Market

Florida stakeholders are pushing hard for the Florida Legislature to enact property insurance reforms this year to assist the state address what has been deemed a market crisis. Read on for what everyone from the state’s insurance consumer advocate, to the insurance regulator, to realtors and agents, are saying about the present state of the Florida insurance market.

“Affordability has been and continues to be a true issue in our state for both auto and property and we’ve seen a reasonably strong trend over the past year of insurance companies having to file for rate increases. All sectors of Florida’s business economy are paying property insurance, so it affects all consumers, both the individual homeowner like me or the business that has property insurance on their company’s buildings. It impacts all folks .”

David Hart, executive Florida Chamber of Commerce, Florida Consumer Protection Coalition

“I am very concerned about the affordability and availability because it relates to homeowners insurance within the state. i feel that policyholders are currently experiencing the consequences of what’s happening immediately within the marketplace, and that i anticipate that if legislation isn't passed this session that helps to deal with a number of the factors … then we’re getting to see things for policyholders still deteriorate and to become more dire.”

Florida Insurance Consumer Advocate Tasha Carter

“Carriers through the primary three quarters of 2020 have an underwriting loss of over $1 billion dollars. once you check out the capital and surplus positions of our domestic carriers, they’ve thus far been ready to withstand tons of these losses, but we don’t really see an end in view to tons of the trends that we’re currently seeing … If there’s no reform this year, we’ll probably see some market consolidations and a few market exits. Our role because the regulators at that time would be to form sure that those things can happen with as minimal disruption to consumers as possible.”

Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier

“Anyone who has been working in insurance and been during this industry for a short time isn't surprised at what's happening. For all folks local agents, our clients are our community members, our friends. we've been in business for 40-something years and that we insure people’s children and grandchildren. it's very upsetting to speak to clients and tell them it’s a tough market and there’s not tons of options out there, and it doesn’t change the very fact they'll not be ready to afford the premium, especially seniors or fixed income individuals. It really hits them very hard.”

Agent Mary Katharine Lawler, Doug Croley Insurance Services, Tallahassee, Fla.

“The biggest takeaway is that agents really, in my opinion, at now can’t stand by and just hope that the market’s getting to recover . It’s on all folks to figure together, both as an association, and our members, but the industry as an entire , to undertake to form for a far better day for Florida’s consumers.”

Kyle Ulrich, president of Florida Association of Insurance Agents

“Florida Realtors is growing increasingly concerned about the value drivers that are negatively impacting Florida’s insurance environment. Rising premiums, less availability and tightening underwriting guidelines jeopardize homeownership within the state and solutions are needed if we would like to support Florida’s growing population. The 2021 legislative session presents an honest opportunity for lawmakers to deal with these problems and that we anticipate to working with them to assist present the realtor perspective on this issue.”

­Cheryl Lambert, president of Florida Realtors

“We are struggling the maximum amount as anyone else when it involves our carriers. We normally get calls from less then 5% of our customers monthly on the residential side, now its probably upwards of 30% of consumers at renewal time – it’s painful. Carriers also are cutting commission so it’s not just affecting clients.”

Agent Reid Rushing, Beck Partners in Pensacola, Fla.

“We are all affected by problems in trying to put coverage with all of the restrictions, guideline changes. We encourage our clients whenever we get a renewal to require it.”

Agent John Pisula, C&C Insurance, Pembroke Pines, Fla.

“I think it’s beyond just urgent, it’s desperate, frankly. If you were to seem at the speed increases that are getting into for the industry, there’s a reason for that which reason is because all of those cases the lawsuits, the overinflation of claims have gotten totally out of hand. And so, the rates need to reflect that and therefore the rates that you simply see are rates that are reflecting that. If there’s no change, i feel you’re getting to see rates still escalate.”

Roger Desjadon, president of Florida Property Casualty Association

“We are seeing 30%+ rate increases across both personal lines and commercial lines. Needless to mention , either we call our insureds or they're going to call us once they receive their renewal offers. … Florida needs real reform. we've been trying to urge our elected officials to pass good legislation for years. we've been telling them that if they are doing nothing, that this may happen. Rates will rise, markets will leave. we would like our clients to possess options. We don’t want them to possess to pay more for fewer coverage.”

Agent Alicia Rosier Stevens, Rosier Insurance, Southwest Florida

“We have seen admitted markets pack up in our area of South Florida (Broward County). The age of the house was an enormous criterion and now it’s lack of availability, which is basically sad. Our customers are very upset about it and that we hope we get some relief from the legislature.”

Agent Randy Iten, Iten Agency, Davie, Fla.

“Being an independent agent is meant to be a plus for us because we will shop options but now we can’t move clients due to these underwriting requirements. they're cursed with whatever carrier they need and obtain cursed with this massive rate increase.”

Agent Richard Sinclair, Wells Insurance Agency, Macclenny, Fla.

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