Nine home insurance companies have entered liquidation in Florida alone over the past year, leaving homeowners to face unprecedented rates during the pandemic. Although Florida has received a lot of attention over the past year, the entire nation has faced more and costlier natural disasters over the past four decades. Florida, Louisiana, and Texas have had the most billion-dollar disasters since 1980 (when adjusted for inflation). This puts a strain on both the people who live in those states and the insurance companies that operate there. The most expensive disaster in 2021 was Hurricane Ida, which made landfall in Louisiana as a category four hurricane. The storm devastated entire communities and did an estimated $75 billion worth of damage.
California is also facing issues because of the massive damage caused by wildfires in the state. The western wildfires of 2021 cost the states of California, Colorado, Arizona, Idaho, Oregon, Montana, and Washington $10.9 billion, with California taking the brunt of the financial damage.
California HOAs are essentially desperate because no insurance companies want to write in brush areas. There are unseen costs of the wildfires as well, such as evacuation orders costing businesses money in lost sales and food. 250,000 California customers lost their coverage in 2019 alone. This has led to the state issuing one-year moratoriums on insurance policy cancellations after major wildfires
As a result, many companies already treading water decided to take drastic actions to keep their companies afloat and stopped writing property coverage in these distressed areas. Companies have and will continue to face tough decisions in areas that experience excessive flooding, wildfires, wind and earthquake damage, and tornados. The good news is that there are still a few good insurance companies willing to provide effective solutions for property risks in these areas.
What is Non-Standard Property Coverage?
Let’s look at non-standard property coverage and who it benefits the most. Non-standard property coverage is property coverage for homes/condos/HOAs/mobile homes/commercial buildings not traditionally covered by standard policies. This type of coverage is often necessary for properties considered to be high risk, such as those located in areas prone to natural disasters or used for business purposes.
Non-standard property coverage can protect the property itself and the contents of the property, and many liabilities that the property owner may face. While this coverage can cost more than standard coverage, it covers perils that other carriers will not. Consideration must be given to the value of the property and the risks involved when looking into this option.
Who needs Non-Standard Property Coverage?
Most standard property insurance policies do not cover certain types of risks. For example, most standard policies exclude flood damage. As a result, people who live in areas at risk for flooding will need non-standard property coverage for proper protection. Other people who may need non-standard property coverage include those who own high-value homes, those who have a property exposed to unusual risks (such as earthquakes, wildfires, or hurricanes), and those who have difficulty obtaining coverage from standard insurers.
For people who live in coastal areas, low-lying geographic areas, and areas prone to fires and mudslides–a non-standard option may be the only insurance that they can receive. As mentioned earlier, several insurance companies have dropped homeowners in Florida because of excessive losses. In 2020, the insurance industry lost $1.6 billion in underwriting.
What to consider when choosing Non-Standard Property Coverage?
You will need to evaluate multiple factors before choosing non-standard property coverage. You’ll need to consider everything that needs to be covered, including home, personal property, etc. This will help determine how much coverage is needed.
Other Property Types
There are other types of properties that may be difficult to find coverage for, such as:
- Condos – Normally requires HO-6 insurance. These properties can cause issues with insurance because the owner doesn’t own the land, building, or property. You own the inside of the dwelling, such as the wiring, cabinets, furniture, appliances, etc. The condo association should have a master insurance policy to cover the building, but you’ll need special insurance to cover what you own. This gets trickier if the building (and your belongings) are in a high-risk area.
- Mobile homes – Insurance companies tend to see mobile homes as being a greater risk to insure because they lack a permanent foundation. Mobile homes may also be set in rural locations, making them more susceptible to natural damage like wind, wildfires, and tornados. Being located on a well and not having fire hydrants nearby also increase risks for insurance companies.
- HOAs – Home Owner Associations also have special challenges that sometimes require non-standard property coverage. Prior claim activity, assessment issues, insolvency exposures, foreclosure rates deemed too high, declining property values, and other issues can cause problems when looking for insurance. Many insurance companies are going insolvent, leaving the HOAs unable to find coverage. California is especially desperate since nobody is writing in brush areas.
Non-standard property coverage is a great way to protect from losses that a standard policy might not cover, especially in those geographic areas that are prone to various types of risks like fires, hurricanes, flooding, etc.
Prime Insurance Company has over 40 years of experience in providing the best insurance solutions for specialty risks, including non-standard property insurance. To learn more about Prime’s non-standard property coverage, contact us at 1-800-257-5590 or email@example.com. To complete a quote online, click here.
Prime Insurance Company (“PIC”) is an unlicensed excess and surplus lines insurance company domiciled in the State of Illinois, and its principal place of business is in Sandy, Utah. Full disclaimer at www.primeis.com/legal.