How to Shop Low Home Insurance Rates in South Florida

15 Mar
Affordable South Florida home insurance rates

Did you know that most of the major insurance companies that write policies in the southern part of Florida are seeking rate hikes?

Unfortunately, it looks like its going to be rate hike time again when it comes to homeowners insurance in South Florida. Most of the major insurance companies that write policies in the southern part of the state are seeking rate hikes, so be prepared when renewal time rolls around.

As an example, People’s Trust, which insured almost 55,000 South Florida homes in 2016, is requesting a 14.5% rate hike for homeowners. While the rate hike request is statewide, many of the hardest hit customers will be in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, where premiums may increase by hundreds of dollars.

What’s driving the big rate hikes? People’s Trust claims that they have experienced unusual losses due to fraudulent water claims as well as litigation related to the abuse of the assignment of benefits (AOB) clause.

According to industry experts, a number of “highly litigious” law firms are working with less than honest and often unlicensed water extractors to take advantage of the assignment of benefits clause in most homeowners insurance policies. When a homeowner signs a work agreement with these contractors they may not realize they are signing their insurance benefits over to the contractor.

In many cases, contractors are inflating their costs to make repairs and then suing insurance companies if the claim is denied or not paid in full. Due to the high cost of litigation, many insurance companies decide to settle, making this easy money for the law firms involved.

According to the Consumer Protection Coalition, which was formed in January 2016 in order to raise awareness of assignment of benefits abuse claims, AOB lawsuits have increased roughly 90,000% since the year 2000. The majority of the fraud is happening in South Florida, mainly in the Miami-Dade area.

Rate Hikes Largest in South Florida

According to a recent article in the Sun Sentinel, South Florida would see the biggest rate hikes.

“The cost for non-hurricane coverage of a single-family home in the Hialeah area of Dade County would increase from an average $1,138 to $1,758, while coverage of a home in the Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood areas of Broward County would jump from $1,064 to $1,740,” says the Sun Sentinel.

Palm Beach County homeowners would see a smaller increase according to the article with the average homeowners premium ranging from $950 up to $1326. The smaller increase in this area of Florida is due to the fact that water and AOB fraud is not near as common as it is in Miami Dade. 

People’s Trust Is Not Alone

People’s Trust is not the only insurance company that is raising rates on homeowners. Citizens Property, the state run insurer, recently raised its rates between 8.9% and 10% depending on where the home is located.

Another Florida-based insurer, Florida Peninsula, who currently ensures roughly 31,000 homes, is seeking a rate hike 9% to 9.7%.

Federated national is seeking a 6.5% increase across the entire state. However, in the Miami-Dade area, the rate increase request is 15.3% and in Palm Beach County it’s a whopping 20.1%.

While AOB and water damage claims are a big component of the rate increase request, it’s not the only reason. Many insurers are also citing hailstorm and tornado damage throughout the state.

Here are the details on other insurance companies and their requested rate hikes for 2017.

  • Johns Insurance: 3.1 percent
  • Elements Property Insurance: 9.5 percent
  • Tower Hill Prime Insurance: 8.9 percent
  • Florida Peninsula: 9.0 percent
  • People’s Trust: 14.5 percent
  • Heritage Property & Casualty: 9.9 percent
  • American Integrity: 4.2 percent
  • Castle Key Insurance: 7.7 percent
  • Castle Key Indemnity: 12 percent
  • Federated National: 6.5 percent

We Can Help

If your rates are headed up, we can help you find an affordable new policy. It doesn’t matter if you are located in Fort Meyers, Naples, Miami, Opa Locka or Coco Beach, we will be happy to help you save by comparing rates with 30 different companies who have all proven to be very competitive in Florida, especially in the tri-county South Florida area.

Our quoting process is hassle free and very easy to use. Once you request quotes online we will compare quotes with the most competitive rates and coverage options available. Some of the top carriers that we can provide quotes for include: Centauri Insurance, St. Johns, People’s Trust, Heritage Insurance, Edison, Florida Peninsula, Olympus, American Integrity, Tower Hill, Anchor Insurance, Universal Property and so much more!

Here are a few tips to help lower your homeowners insurance premium:

Shop Your Coverage: If your current policy has gone up in price, the best advice is to shop your coverage. Insurers rate risk differently so premium quotes can vary dramatically. We will shop up to 30 different companies to help you find the best policy at the best price. Click here to get cheaper Florida home insurance quotes online!

Discounts: Insurance companies offer dozens of discounts so it is important to make sure you are getting all the discounts that you are qualified to receive. We will do a discount review and make sure all available discounts are being applied.

Upgrade Your Home: In storm prone south Florida, upgrading your home can result in a significant discount. Replacing your roof with wind resistant materials and adding storm shutters or a sprinkler system can all put money back in your pocket.

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