Are you one of the 1.6 million Florida homeowners insured with Citizens property insurance? We’ve been hearing about some significant to Citizens in the recent months and we invited Chip Kooser, insurance agent with All Risk Insurance, to come educate you on these issues. These changes will eventually affect all Florida homeowners with Citizens so listen to this video and contact your insurance agent when you receive your renewal if you own a Florida rental property or if you receive any letters from Citizens.
These significant changes affect premiums and coverage and include:
1) Depopulation of Citizens policies. Citizens is trying to reduce the number of policies that it has and has private market carriers willing to accept the policies by way of assigning them to other carriers. You may receive a letter assigning you to a new insurance company. Review the offer and contact your insurance agent for more information. You may or may not want to take the assignment Citizens is placing you with but you will need to take action on this letter or your policy will be reassigned.
2) A requirement for a separate flood through FEMA. Effective in 2023, all citizens, renewals and flood zones are required to maintain a separate flood policy through FEMA in order to keep their insurance with citizens. As of now, only properties in a flood zone have this requirement, but within a few years, all Florida homeowners insured through citizens will be required to carry flood insurance regardless of their flood zone designation.
Effective at your next renewal, any property in a special flood hazard area will be required to get a flood policy. They will introduce a new category of homes that need to secure flood insurance yearly, regardless of flood zone, based on replacement value costs:
In 2024, any homes with a replacement value above $600,000 will be required to obtain a flood policy.
By 2025, homes insured with a $500,000 or higher replacement value
In 2026, homes insured with a $400,000 or higher replacement value
By 2027, all Florida homeowners with Citizens insurance will be required to secure and maintain flood insurance regardless of flood zone or replacement cost value.
3) 35% assessment on short term rental properties. While this premium is only being charged on short term, vacation rentals in Florida, the premium is being assisted on all rental properties. It is on the homeowner to provide proof to citizens at the property is rented long-term in order to waive the 35% assessment by providing a lease. If you do not provide this documentation, your policy will be assessed at 35% premium as if it were a short-term rental. Make sure to read the fine print and send in the requested documents so you can avoid this penalty if you a long-term property owner with Citizens Insurance.
As always, if you’re a Realty Masters, landlord, and you have questions about your Florida insurance policy, reach out to our team for advice.