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Broke?Insurers Force Coverage

Insurers have padded their policies [with] these rate hikes by making homeowners insure their personal property (i.e., furniture) for half the value of their homes.

I mainly sell $100,000 homes to first-time buyers who are often single parents using the state bond program to get into the house. When the insurance company makes them insure $50,000 in personal property, I’m outraged!

Let my people get fire and casualty and sign a waiver for losses on personal property over 25 percent of the value of their home.

That insurance premium keeps many of them from buying a home, and it’s the first thing former buyers mention when they want to sell. They’ll go back to renting because [homeowners’ insurance has raised] their monthly payment so much. This is sad because they went through so much to buy the home in the first place.

I can get them a 30-year fixed mortgage, but not even a five-year fixed insurance payment. This is highway robbery and it’s wrong!

Joan Reynolds
Realty Executives of Jacksonville

Time to Fix Insurance Problems

People all over Florida need property insurance—not just in the southern counties. And affordable health insurance should’ve been available for sales associates long ago.

How can a person work, be healthy and not get quality health insurance? I hope that [the Florida Association of Realtors® (FAR)] continues to push for quality and affordable insurance.

Sandra Boyd
EXIT Realty Consultants
Brandon


Editor’s Note: For the outcome of the Florida Legislature’s recent special session addressing property insurance, see page 12.


Tardy Closings Are Common

I work mostly in the Dade-Broward market. Ninety-five percent of the time, the closing doesn’t happen on the day it’s scheduled [because] the bank is simply taking longer to close.

Whenever a listing sells, I always advise the seller to put in the contract that he or she can rent back after closing anywhere from one week to one month. If the seller doesn’t need the time, that’s great. It’s a shame when sellers have the moving van outside their house only to find out they’re not closing on a designated day.

Nancy Magner
RE/MAX Unique Realty
Hialeah


Apples vs. Oranges

Florida, the new California? [See January 2007, Mailbox, page 6.]  I suppose no one bothered to review the comparison of median incomes between the two states.

A recent employment ad in the St. Petersburg Times requesting a Senior Technical Support Professional with A+ Certification starts at $15 an hour. Are you kidding me? That’s below Florida’s median income.

For the record, depending on what census statistics you look at, California hovers in the mid-$60,000 median income stratosphere—a far cry from Florida’s low $40,000s and an even farther cry from the enticing offer of a $28,800 starting salary.

And Florida employers wonder why they can’t find any local talent? Based on Florida’s median income, the median cost of a home in Florida should be no more than $140,000 before taxes and insurance.

Carolyn Beardsley
Keller Williams Gulf Coast
St. Petersburg


Submit letters to “Editor” via e-mail to FLRealtor@far.org, mail to P.O. Box 725025, Orlando FL 32872-5025, or fax to (407) 438-1411.
Letters are edited for space and clarity. Publication of a letter does not constitute an endorsement of the writer’s views by the Florida Association of Realtors®.