Florida Insurance Commisioner David Altmaier issued the final order regarding Citizens Property Insurance Corporation rate filing.
Citizens’ request to remove the 10% rate cap and the inclusion of a risk factor provision were both denied, resulting in overall lower rates than requested.
However, the removal of the 10% rate cap is featured in three bills currently making their way through the Florida legislature (HB305, SB76 and HB1574). The risk factor provision is included in HB305 as well.
The rate increases for Monroe County are 8.2% for homeowners and 9.4% for condo unit owners. The rates go into effect August 1, 2021. This is the first residential windstorm rate increase for Monroe County since 2017.
Citizens CEO Barry Gilway claims “…the marketplace in Florida is shutting down.” He blames litigation rates and reinsurance costs as the reasons that private insurers are leaving the state.
Gilway claims that Citizens’ growth is also due to the rate cap keeping its rates lower than private insurers.
“The capacity in the marketplace has shrunk to the point where unfortunately Citizens is becoming not the market of last resort but, in many cases, the market of first resort,” according to Gilway. However, in Monroe County Citizens is often the only option.