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Homeowners Insurance Rates Florida

How Climate Change Is Driving Up Homeowners Insurance Rates In Florida

Sep 16, 2023

No matter where you live, changes in the weather are no longer in doubt. The extreme storms and weather issues impacting Florida over the last few years have done more than just cause damage, they are driving insurance companies out of the state. However, homeowners are the ones paying the price, with higher than expected hikes in home insurance rates and a dwindling number of insurance companies. To add to the problem, the increased cost to repair or replace homes has resulted in increased insurance costs for homeowners in the area.

Florida is not the only state hit with the effects of extreme weather. The west coast, and specifically California, is also facing a loss of both national and regional insurance companies. In California, the extreme heat has primed the state for major losses due to wildfires, while in Florida, the escalating frequency and intensity of hurricanes continue to drive the issue.

Warming Waters

According to studies, the last four decades are responsible for a significant amount of warming in the oceans. The water can absorb up to 90% of the heat caused by greenhouse gases. This is good for helping keep air temperatures from spiking rapidly, but it creates a problem when combined with hurricane storms. Warmer waters mean that hurricane seasons are getting longer, with named storms hitting the coast of Florida with increasing frequency in May.

Warmer water and a warmer atmosphere create two problems. The warmer air can hold more humidity, resulting in more significant rainfall during storms. This, in turn, creates a higher risk of flooding for areas not directly impacted by the actual hurricane. In a 2022 study in the Journal of Nature Communications, rainfall rates in hurricanes increased by up to 11% in the 2020 hurricane season over previous seasons. That trend continues, leading to higher flood insurance claims across the state.

The conditions required to form a hurricane include warm ocean water and high humidity levels. With even a one degree increase in the temperature of the water, hurricanes are able to strengthen and are less likely to naturally dissipate before making landfall. Research shows that just a single degree warmer can result in a storm that is up to ten percent stronger.

In addition, Hurricanes Irma, Ian, and Michael actually intensified before landfall, which is not historically common. This intensification of wind speed combined with excessive rainfall will continue to be an issue for Floridians to consider, even if they are not located in traditional landfall locations along the state’s coasts.

Insurance Company Response

The response of homeowners insurance companies to the impact of climate change has been to increase prices and reduce their risk exposure. For many companies, like Farmers Insurance, this means canceling existing policies and pulling out of the state.

Other regional insurance companies are not renewing homeowners policies or are adding on premium rate hikes of up to 40% per year. To make matters more complicated, the impact of multiple large storm events, the high cost of repairing and replacing damaged homes, and the ongoing homeowners insurance litigation in the state have caused them to become insolvent, leaving homeowners searching for coverage.

If you are looking for homeowners insurance in Hialeah Gardens, Margate, Homestead, Palmetto Bay, Cutler Bay, North Miami Beach, Coral Gables, Hialeah, Naples, and Miami, FL, talk to the team at Del Toro Insurance. Give us a call at 305-335-8676 or drop us a note online, and we can help you find the coverage you need.

FAQs

Why is the average cost of home insurance in Florida so high?
Significant payouts from Hurricanes Irma, Michael, and Ian combined with an increase in storm frequency and intensity, high litigation costs, and an increasing population living on the coast have all contributed to the high cost of homeowners insurance in the state.

What financial preparations can homeowners in Florida undertake to cope with the rising homeowners’ insurance rates resulting from climate change?
Complete a wind mitigation inspection and make recommended upgrades or changes to protect your home. Talk to the team at Del Toro Insurance to evaluate your coverage and look for more affordable options.

How are Florida homeowners dealing with the difficulties of securing sufficient home insurance coverage?
Homeowners are shopping for better insurance coverage at lower rates. In some cases, this includes choosing Citizens Insurance to provide affordable, standard coverage for their home. Talk to the team at Del Toro Insurance to explore your homeowners insurance options.

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