The property insurance reform bill that was under review in the Senate’s special session this week has passed! It received our Governor’s signature and is yet another step in the right direction to making home insurance available and affordable again.
More details on what this bill entails can be found here
but the following points are what we consider to be the most important:
- Reinsurance assistance for insurance carriers that results in reduced premiums for consumers
- Policies cannot be refused or non-renewed solely because the home’s roof is less than 15 years old, contingent on an inspection confirming that there are at least 5 years of life left on the roof
- Limitations on attorney fees and fee multipliers
- New roof deductible options
- More Office of Insurance Regulation guidelines to help prevent Florida-based carriers from financial instability or liquidation
- Roofs with less than 25% damage can be repaired, rather than requiring full replacement
- Steps to curb fraudulent roof claims and roofing contractor solicitation
- Grants and tax exemptions for wind mitigation efforts
This bill received its final stamp of approval from Governor DeSantis, who stated that this package is “the most significant reforms to Florida’s homeowners insurance market in a generation.”
We remain hopeful and excited for positive change. We are in this together and ultimately, want to keep homeownership as great of an experience as possible for all Floridians.
The national average cost of a gallon of unleaded fuel is now at $4.56 but it is still expected that Memorial Day weekend will be one of the most heavily traveled times of the year. AAA predicts that over 39 million people will hit the road and go 50 miles or more from home to enjoy the three day weekend. This prediction of travelers is up over 8% from 2021. So what does this mean if you’re one of those brave road trippers? Here are some pro tips:
- Have your vehicle serviced ahead of time – oil and fluid change/top off, check tire pressure or rotate them, and windshield wipers
- The Red Cross recommends always having an emergency kit with supplies such as water, a flashlight, cell phone charger, jumper cables, first aid kit and spare tire
- Be sure your proof of insurance card and registration are in the vehicle
- Pack extra bottled water and stay gassed up in the event of traffic delays
- Use a navigation app such as Waze for traffic detours, road closures, etc.
- It’s also a good idea to pack your spare key in a purse or bag that won’t necessarily be in the vehicle the whole trip. It’ll do you more good in your hotel room than all the way back home if you happen to misplace or lose your keys while you’re away.
If you plan to rent a vehicle at any point on your trip, we always recommend purchasing the insurance coverage that they offer. It’s very common that people assume they have everything they need on their own auto policy back home but it doesn’t always transfer to a temporarily rented vehicle. Typically, the coverage for the vehicle itself would (as long as you have comprehensive and collision on your policy), but liability is one of the most important parts as well as injury protection for you and your passengers. It’s wise to add their protection when possible, especially since it’s usually inexpensive.
The best move you can make is to be prepared… with your packing list but also your mindset. With 39 million people on the road, you’re bound to have delays or detours but try not to stress. This kicks off a summer of sunshine and should be a fun time! After all, it wasn’t that long ago that we didn’t have the ability to vacation during the pandemic so hang in there and safe travels!