Windstorm insurance rates for Monroe County homeowners will remain at 2017 levels for the next year. Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier ordered Citizens to freeze residential rate increases in Monroe County at existing levels.

In March, Fair Insurance Rates in Monroe (FIRM) testified at the Citizens Rate Hearing in Tallahassee, arguing that Monroe County has consistently had among the highest insurance rates in the state while also having the strongest building codes. FIRM’s arguments for fair and affordable wind insurance rates were an integral part of Altmaier’s order to Citizens to keep current rates in place in Monroe County. Since 2017, Monroe County policyholders have saved an additional $15 million in potential rate increases, thanks to FIRM’s advocacy.

FIRM has testified that Citizens windstorm insurance rates are unjustifiably high for Monroe County, resulting in Monroe County  premiums that are more  than $805 million higher than claims since 2004, including Wilma and Irma losses. 

In 2017 the Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) and Insurance Commissioner Altmaier considered the issues that FIRM raised and directed Citizens to complete a series of analyses, one of which has not yet been completed.  Commissioner Altmaier, this year, ordered Citizens to complete “an evaluation and study of the models accepted by the Florida Commission on Hurricane Loss Projection Methodology using the 2017 stands which includes the requirement that the county building codes be reflected in the model results, as specified in the prior rate order, Order No. 211627-17.”

“We are so grateful for the support we receive from our state and local elected officials and the local governments and associations who continue to financially support our efforts, and especially to our members, who donate, volunteer, send comments and continue to fight alongside us,” said FIRM President Mel Montagne. “FIRM’s all-volunteer Board shows up year after year to continue to fight on behalf of the residents of Monroe County.”

Fair Insurance Rates in Monroe (FIRM) is a grassroots non-profit working for affordable and available wind and flood insurance for Monroe County.  FIRM’s efforts have resulted in over $500 million in catastrophe insurance savings for Monroe and a variety other related insurance benefits. Residents can become members of FIRM at no cost and keep current with catastrophe insurance and mitigation issues at FIRMKeys.org.

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