April 20, 2018

2007 Industry Outlook


Property insurance takes center stage.

Mike Vogel | 1/1/2007

Leave workers' comp alone.

Lower the state hurricane catastrophe fund's buydown.

Allot more money for mitigation on top of the $250 million from last year.

Eliminate the Panhandle exemption to the tougher statewide building code.

Protect CAT fund balances from being raided by the Legislature for other needs.

Ready to Boom

For the insurance industry, the general public and politicians, any discussion of the year ahead begins and ends with hurricane insurance. The certain outlook for the industry is that the state will examine controlling property insurance costs by taking an expanded role in assuming risk against hurricanes. The extent of that role -- and how to pay for it -- will depend on legislative sausage-making either in this month's special session or the regular session.

After $36 billion in insured damage in Florida for the eight-hurricane 2004 and 2005 seasons, property insurance is in crisis. The number of property insurers writing in the state fell to 167 last year, down from a high of 225 in 1998. Last year, 52 of those 167 asked for premium increases of more than 25%, in part to cover their own higher costs for reinsurance.

The state's putative insurer of last resort, Citizens Property Insurance, has become the largest insurer in the state with 1.2 million policies.

"The people of Florida are pretty upset about the situation they're in," says Tallahassee-based William Stander of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America. "We don't have a magic plan. There's no carburetor that's going to let you get 100 miles to the gallon that we're keeping in the vault some place."

Changes Ahead

The state is expected to make it easier for insurers to tap its catastrophic fund.

The state will likely OK more than the $250 million appropriated last year to inspect homes and help harden them to withstand hurricanes.

Tags: Around Florida

Digital Access

Add digital to your current subscription, purchase a single digital issue, or start a new subscription to Florida Trend.

An overview of the features and articles in this month's issue of Florida Trend.


Florida Business News

Florida Trend Video Pick

Celebrity Edge, where dining really is on the edge
Celebrity Edge, where dining really is on the edge

Le Petit Chef, a tiny animated chef who creates a whimsical dessert, is a key ingredient in what Celebrity Cruises calls an immersive fusion of entertainment and dining on its newest ship, Celebrity Edge, debuting in Fort Lauderdale.

Earlier Videos | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

Ballot Box

Who should pay for increased security at Florida's K-12 schools?

  • School districts, out of their budget
  • Cities and Counties
  • State of Florida
  • Other (comments welcome)

See Results

Ballot Box