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Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 10:04 AM   #1
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Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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According to a new state law, by 2008 Citizens Property Insurance (Citizens) may not cover homes valued over $1 million or second homes that do not receive homestead exemption.
As the law reads now, after July 1, 2008 Citizens will not renew or issue policies to homes valued over $1 million. The same bill prohibits Citizens from writing policies on second homes after March 1, 2007.
I thought I had it figured out.* Do a 1031 exchange next year on the condo we bought in 2000(not worth a $1M, but a *good investment nonetheless ) and buy a house.* Rent the house for a few years and then turn it into our primary residence.* Since Citizens is the biggest insurer in Florida now, I am pretty sure that the area where I wanted to buy a house (Ormond Beach east of 95) is pretty much all Citizens.* *Since Iím not a homesteader yet, I probably wonít be able to get insurance for a second home used as a rental.* So much for that strategy.

One of the interesting things I've discovered about planning for retirement is that nothing is cut and dried.* For every challenge, there are multiple ways to resolve it.* It drives my DW crazy that I can't be more specific.* After this, she's starting to understand why I have 4 different plans....
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 10:28 AM   #2
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

It is often harder to insure second homes or vacation homes than other properties. Insurance companies don't like property that sits vacant for part of the year. You are trying to insure rental property. Two different things. I would approach looking for insurance from that point of view.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 10:34 AM   #3
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by Martha
It is often harder to insure second homes or vacation homes than other properties.* Insurance companies don't like property that sits vacant for part of the year.* You are trying to insure rental property.* Two different things.* * I would approach looking for insurance from that point of view.
It won't matter. FL property east of I-95 is toxic waste to pretty much every insurer on the planet. That's why Citizens (insurer of last resort) is the only one there.

To OP: Find somewhere else to buy property.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 10:34 AM   #4
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

Thanks for the suggestions. *With the condo, the insurance is part of the association fee so I never had to worry about finding it. *I've never tried renting a house before. *I guess I need to do a little more research before I scrap this plan. *In any event as Brewer noted, with the way things are going in the windstorm insurance business in FL these days, getting insurance on a rental home will probably be more expensive than insurance on a primary residence, which is already very costly.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 10:41 AM   #5
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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getting insurance on a rental home will probably be more expensive than insurance on a primary residence, which is already very costly.
Not sure about FL but in normal places insurance for rentals are cheaper than homes because you're not insuring the furniture and everything else in the house. I would talk with real estate investors in the area and see who they use as far as rental coverage goes.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 10:51 AM   #6
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by Arif
Not sure about FL but in normal places insurance for rentals are cheaper than homes because you're not insuring the furniture and everything else in the house. I would talk with real estate investors in the area and see who they use as far as rental coverage goes.
Florida is definitely not normal. .* Windstorm insurance is very costly so it doesn't really matter if the house has furniture or not.* I do plan to talk to some pros in FL when I am down there again in a few months, but I'm starting to think that I should just sell the condo (if I can), pay the capital gains hit and take whatever is left over and run.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 11:24 AM   #7
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

Lots of other carriers insure in this state. We do not have Citizens. Can't speak to the east coast, but lots of options here on the Gulf for most properties.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 12:57 PM   #8
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
It won't matter.* FL property east of I-95 is toxic waste to pretty much every insurer on the planet.* That's why Citizens (insurer of last resort) is the only one there.

To OP: Find somewhere else to buy property.
what did florida beat you up when you were a little kid?
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 01:12 PM   #9
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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what did florida beat you up when you were a little kid?
Nope, just a long-time observer of the insurance markets. FL's property insurance market is broken and I do not see an obvious fix any time in the next 5 years. Plan for steadily increasing rates, eachand every year, if you own insured property in FL. If you are elsewhere on the East Coast, expect stiff rate increases, but not on the order of FL's. $75+Billion got washed out of the insurance/reinsurance industry last year. It has to be replaced, and then some. Guess where it is going to come from?
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 01:20 PM   #10
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
Nope, just a long-time observer of the insurance markets. FL's property insurance market is broken and I do not see an obvious fix any time in the next 5 years. Plan for steadily increasing rates, eachand every year, if you own insured property in FL. If you are elsewhere on the East Coast, expect stiff rate increases, but not on the order of FL's. $75+Billion got washed out of the insurance/reinsurance industry last year. It has to be replaced, and then some. Guess where it is going to come from?
East coast? Does that include NC/SC/VA inland areas (100+ miles inland)?
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 01:51 PM   #11
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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East coast?* Does that include NC/SC/VA inland areas (100+ miles inland)?*
Well inland will probably only see mild rate pressure, might even see some modest decreases. depending on how things shake out.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 01:54 PM   #12
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
Well inland will probably only see mild rate pressure, might even see some modest decreases. depending on how things shake out.
That's good to hear - more of the same year to year variations. My premium YOY is about the same, maybe down a small amount.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 01:59 PM   #13
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
Nope, just a long-time observer of the insurance markets. FL's property insurance market is broken and I do not see an obvious fix any time in the next 5 years.
This is a hot topic in the upcoming governor's race. *The politics will probably force them to do something next year - *One of the more popular ideas is to expand National Flood Insurance to include all national disasters. *There doesn't seem to be much support for this at the Federal Level since the flood program loses money runs a constant deficit.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 02:03 PM   #14
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by tomz
This is a hot topic in the upcoming governor's race. *The politics will probably force them to do something next year - *One of the more popular ideas is to expand National Flood Insurance to include all national disasters. *There doesn't seem to be much support for this at the Federal Level since the flood program loses money runs a constant deficit.*
Good luck with that. Either the policyholder have to pay, or all taxpayers get to pick up the tab. No free lunches, unfortunately.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 02:19 PM   #15
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
Good luck with that. Either the policyholder have to pay, or all taxpayers get to pick up the tab. No free lunches, unfortunately.
All those years with very few hurricanes allowed them to keep the rates artificially low and underfund the reserves.* Now with 2 bad years back to back, the crap has hit the fan.* State Farm wanted 79% rate hikes and the regulators talked them down to 51%.* That's a big jolt for a lot of folks.* *Companies are pulling out right and left.* Citizens is now the biggest insurer in FL in terms of policies.* There is no reason to expect any fix to be rational, that would be more than one could hope for from politicians.* :P However, if something doesn't happen, Florida's real estate market will be seriously stressed.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 02:48 PM   #16
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by tomz
All those years with very few hurricanes allowed them to keep the rates artificially low and underfund the reserves.* Now with 2 bad years back to back, the crap has hit the fan.* State Farm wanted 79% rate hikes and the regulators talked them down to 51%.* That's a big jolt for a lot of folks.* *Companies are pulling out right and left.* Citizens is now the biggest insurer in FL in terms of policies.* There is no reason to expect any fix to be rational, that would be more than one could hope for from politicians.* :P However, if something doesn't happen, Florida's real estate market will be seriously stressed.*
By way of comparison, Louisiana has a state-sponsored catastrophe fund similar to the FL windstorm pool. The LA pool asked the regulator to quadruple rates(!). The regulator only let them double rates.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 02:53 PM   #17
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

i don't know a whole lot but from what little i read in the papers, this strikes me more as profit scam than actual coverage cost.

http://tinyurl.com/hx2m4

At one point, State Farm Florida had requested a 15 percent profit margin, but lowered it to 6.1 percent, Lotane said.

i say to hell with insurance companies, but then, i tend towards socialism anyway. we should stop them from writing policies on our easy money cars and liability insurance too. we should just self-insure and keep the profits here.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 03:06 PM   #18
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by lazygood4nothinbum
we should just self-insure and keep the profits here.
Some people in FL are doing exactly that. A friend of mine has a vacation cubbyhole in a flood plain area there. He switched to self-insurance after the last couple of hurricane seasons and subsequent rate increases. We'll see what he has to say after the first flood*
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 03:08 PM   #19
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by lazygood4nothinbum
i don't know a whole lot but from what little i read in the papers, this strikes me more as profit scam than actual coverage cost.
This is all being driven by the reinsurance market. *FL catastrophe reinsurance coverage has (minimum) doubled in price over last year when capacity can even be found. *At the same time, rating agencies are telling the State Farms, Nationwides, Allstates, etc. that they have to buy more of it now, since we appear to be in a brave new world. *The reinsurers are charging more because A) we are in a brave new world and B) there aren't as many left after several blew up in the wake of Katrina, Rita and Wilma. *The shareholders of the remaining reinsurers are demanding very high returns on capital in order to take the risk, thank you very much. *And, oh, if you don't like it, please step aside so the dozen other people who (desparately) want to do business with us don't trample you as they try to get here.

It ain't pretty, to say the least.
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version
Old 08-03-2006, 03:11 PM   #20
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Re: Best Laid Plans....Florida version

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Originally Posted by lazygood4nothinbum
i say to hell with insurance companies...
I think that's the kind of advice insurance co's are following re: florida. "To hell with florida!".

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