Florida's 3rd largest home insurer, State Farm, is asking for a steep hike; they're requesting a 14.9% average increase. But the proposal comes after the company was granted increases for the past two and a half years.
A spokesman for the company says the increase ensures their financial stability, if a storm were to ever come our way. "Our customers rely on us to help them recover when something does happens. When something happens, this rate change is what is necessary to keep those promises." Michal Connolly says.
State Farm filed for a 14.9% increase in homeowner rates, a 28% increase in condominium insurance and rental property premiums could go up at least 57.3%
But State Farm says the hike for rental property owners varies greatly and depends on the location. The company which has about 470,000 policies in the state says the increase would affect roughly 33,000 policies.
Brian Deffenbaugh from the Office of Insurance Consumer Advocate told the News Service of Florida, they're concerned because State Farm has not given any indication that this rate increase will result in them writing any new policies.
In 2010, State Farm dropped 125,000 policies and have shown limited growth since then. An independent insurance agent says the company is not the only one raising rates.
"A lot of the others are getting some pretty hefty increases as the companies kind of batten down the hatches and really start stream lining their underwriting criteria. Florida is a high risk state for property insurance. I don't think they're pulling out, I think they're reducing their exposure in the state." Pat Quirk says.
Citizens policy holders could also see a premium increase in January. A Florida governing board approved an 8.8% increase; those rates won't go into effect until the Office of Insurance Regulation approves them.