IMPORTANT INSURANCE COVERAGE CONSIDERATIONS
Coverage Options & Discounts Are Important To Understand
The State of Florida’s homeowners and windstorm insurer, known as Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (formerly known as the JUA or FWUA), has recently expanded a number of important coverages, changed others, and altered its Premium Discount Program.
If you use Citizens for your windstorm coverage, it is critical to understand these new coverage changes and discounts so as to arrange the coverage you desire and obtain the lowest possible costs.
A brief summary of some of the key changes which Citizens has made to coverage includes the following:
Coverage A—Dwelling has been broadened to provide coverage for attached structures such as pools, screen pool enclosures, and garages. You should review your policy limits of liability to make sure your coverage limits reflect the value of these items.
Citizens has added Coverage B—Other Structures coverage to your policy. This Coverage B covers your fences, detached pools, detached screen pool enclosures, and other such items. If you have these types of items currently listed separately on your policy, then you will likely want to contact us to discuss removing them so as to save money. Citizens now offers Replacement Cost loss settlement coverage for Personal Property. Please note that you must specifically request this coverage be added to your policy, if desired, and pay the necessary additional (15% for home policies and 35% on condo and renters) premium for this protection. We strongly suggest that you immediately consider adding this coverage given its importance in the event you suffer a loss to your Personal Property. We are, of course, immediately prepared to assist you with your questions concerning this newly available coverage.
Citizens has added Coverage D—Fair Market Value to your policy.
Citizens has added $ 10,000.00 of coverage for “limited ’fungi’, wet or dry rot, yeast, or bacteria” (mold) resulting from a perils insured against occurring during the policy period. Increased limits of $ 25,000.00 and $ 50,000.00 are also available. Please note that you must request the increased limits, if desired, and pay the additional premium needed for the added coverage.
Citizens has made changes to the Special Limits of Personal Property to broaden most limits, as well as change the types of property not covered.
For Condominium Unit Owners (please see Condominium Unit Coverage Changes on Page Four of this newsletter) the insurance responsibility for condominium unit property has changed as a result of recent legislation. Condominium Unit Owners are now responsible for water filters, built-in cabinets and countertops, window treatments, and air conditioning units which service individual units.
Please note that you need to review your policy limits and determine if your current coverage will properly cover you as a result of the laws recent changes.
BIG PREMIUM DISCOUNTS POSSIBLE
Depending on the hurricane windstorm protective devices that your home has in place, discounts ranging from 10% to nearly 45% are available to properly inspected and documented homes. Citizens has recently updated its discount (mitigation) program to comply with Florida Building Code changes.
This change has eliminated or altered some of Citizens previous Premium Discounts but has created opportunities for additional discounts when certain housing features are present. A premium discount may be available if one or more of the following items or construction techniques exist that reduce losses from windstorm:
1. Roof Covering
2. Roof Shape
3. Secondary Water Resistance
4. Opening Protection (shutters)
5. Roof Deck Attachment
6. Roof-Wall Connection
Please note that Citizens requires specific documentation which substantiates the existence of these items. Under the program you are responsible for the cost of the inspection and documentation which is required.
If you have not had your home inspected for windstorm insurance discounts, then we would suggest that you contact us today so we can arrange the proper inspection and help you obtain the paperwork, which is needed to apply for the available discounts. Once again, please keep in mind that the savings due to these discounts can be significant.
Review your coverage now and make any needed changes before it’s too late.
|CITIZENS WINDSTORM PUBLICATIONS|
|Citizens Coverage Changes
Citizens, the State of Florida’s “insurer of last resort”, has recently announced many reductions or eliminations of coverages as it seeks ways to reduce its nearly 1.5 Million policies and the half trillion dollars in exposure it insures. »
| The Windstorm Solution
Florida is in the midst of a widnstorm crisis that impacts all consumers. After devatating losses in 2004 and 2005, hurricane (wind) insurance is increasingly neither affordable nor readily available. »
|Citizens’ New Commercial Windstorm Insurer
In one of the more creative attempts to reduce it’s exposures to loss, the State of Florida’s windstorm insurer of last resort, Citizens Property Insurance Corporation has agreed to renew thousands of commercial windstorm policies into a brand new insurer, Weston Insurance Company. »
|FLOOD INSURANCE PUBLICATIONS|
|Flood Insurance Premium Increase
Effective October 1, 2009, changes to the National Flood Insurance Program will result in premium rate increases for various risk zones, coverage limits for building & contents as well as standard deductibles offered for pre- and post- FIRM properties. »