New firms bring lower insurance rates

Jun 27, 2008

Jacksonville Business Journal--June 27, 2008
by Rachel Witkowski Staff Writer

NORTHEAST FLORIDA — Nearly 20 Florida-based property and casualty insurers have started covering homeowners and businesses in Jacksonville, creating the one thing residents may not see elsewhere this year — lower rates.

As larger, national insurers have either slowed writing policies in the state or left completely after the 2004 and 2005 hurricane seasons, other insurers have picked up the business, including more than 18 that have their eye on Jacksonville.

The unprecedented growth in domestic insurers is creating competition in the industry, which places pressure on insurers to have competitive rates and more choices for the consumer.

More than 30 domestic insurers have been approved to write policies in Florida since 2006, mostly for homeowners, and some for mobile home and commercial lines, according to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation.