Blog: First Community Insurance wants 27 percent rate hike

Oct 19, 2010

The following article was posted to the Sun Sentinel House Keys blog on October 19, 2010:

By Julie Patel

First Community Insurance Co. plans to ask regulators Thursday for a 26.7 percent increase for policies that cover rented or vacation homes.

First Community, a subsidiary of St. Petersburg-based Bankers Insurance Group, is among the top 30 Florida home insurers with 56,000 policies – roughly 10,000 policies in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties and about 11,000 policies in the Orlando area.

The increase is needed in part to pay for higher reinsurance costs; fix the fact that the company’s “lowest rates are found in the most catastrophe-prone areas of the state such as Southeast Florida;” and offset discounts for hurricane-proofing that left “wind premiums extremely low,” First Community wrote in its rate proposal.

The Office of Insurance Regulation rate hearing is on the same day as a symposium the office is organizing in Orlando on Florida’s property insurance market. The event, Moving the Market Forward, will feature some big hitters in the reinsurance industry, which sells catastrophe back up coverage to Florida insurers and has a major impact on customers’ rates.

The rate hearing and symposium are both at 1 p.m. and can be viewed live on WFSU, channels 3 and 4 respectively.

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