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Citizens Insurance Corp. board approves 2015 rates


ORLANDO, Fla. – June 27, 2014 – Citizens Property Insurance Corp. Board of Governors on Wednesday approved a 2015 rate package that reflects an overall average 2.9 percent statewide decrease for personal residential policyholders.

Single-family homeowners will see an average drop of 3.2 percent for the coming year under a slate of rate recommendations that must be approved later by the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation.

Overall, personal and commercial rates will decrease by 1 percent.

Sinkhole rates in Pasco, Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties will remain the same for 2015. Sinkhole policyholders in Hernando County, which continues to have the highest loss ratio in the state, will increase by 10 percent.

Florida hasn't had a major storm in eight years, and a "glide path" of increased insurance premiums has increased Citizens' profits. Reinsurance costs – insurance policies taken out by insurers to offset any major loss – are also at historic lows.

As a result, about seven in 10 Citizens personal lines policyholders will see rate reductions in 2015; 58 percent will see reductions greater than 5 percent.

"The 2015 rates reflect our best actuarial estimate of Citizens' rate needs for the coming year," said Chris Gardner, chairman of Citizens' Board of Governors. "Following five years of prudent rate filings under the glide path, actuarial estimates now indicate rate reductions are in order for a significant number of our policyholders."

The statewide average homeowners multi-peril premium proposed for 2015 is $2,379, down from an average of $2,538 in 2014 – a $159 yearly savings.

The recommended 2015 rates will be submitted to the Office of Insurance Regulation, which must approve Citizens' rates before they take effect.

Rate increases of non-sinkhole coverage are capped at 10 percent by statute. The cap does not include statutorily required payments to build up cash reserves in the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund (CAT Fund), the state's reinsurance agency.

© 2014 Florida Realtors®


Related Topics: Property insurance