ROYAL PALM BEACH, Fla. — The moves made by Florida lawmakers this week to ease the state’s home insurance crisis will likely take time to offer any help to homeowners.
“The short-term effect will be felt in 2024, probably when everybody starts to see more competition,” said Robert Norberg of Arden Insurance in Lantana. “We have been told there are companies already getting approvals signed up in the wings waiting to see if this legislation got passed.”
The more companies looking to do business in Florida, Norberg said, the more options it will give homeowners and lower premiums.
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Lawmakers are hoping to achieve that by boosting the reinsurance fund by a billion dollars, clearing some litigation hurdles and luring more homeowners away from Citizens Insurance, the state insurer of last resort.
“More competition will allow people to say to your agent or to other agents, ‘Shop this around, I know there’s other markets out there.’ With competition, comes lower prices,” Norberg said.
For many homeowners, waiting for relief is growing more difficult, as premiums are skyrocketing.
“I really have no confidence. Because first of all, the politicians in the Legislature right now have been there for the last number of years and they haven’t done anything about it,” homeowner Caren Griffin of Royal Palm Beach.
Griffin said her homeowners insurance went up by $3,000, mainly because of the age of her roof, a common reason for increasing throughout Florida.
“I don’t have a mortgage, and I could drop the insurance,” Griffin said. “But then you worry about fire and liability, and it’s one of those things if you drop your insurance that’s when everything will happen.”
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