Homeowner's Insurance Crisis and Seniors
Florida has one of the highest senior populations in the United States, and that population is only growing. Seniors are particularly vulnerable to financial woes, as they typically come to Florida to retire and live on a fixed income consisting of Social Security income and retirement savings. A slight increase in expenses could be detrimental to seniors living on fixed incomes, but the increase in property insurances rates has been anything but slight.
Florida lawmakers have failed to pass effective reforms to the property insurance scheme, leading to at least a dozen property insurers discontinuing policies in the state or refusing to write new ones. This has left many homeowners to pick up the bill, with some paying more than double last year's rates for the same or lower coverages. Seniors in particular who have been paying premiums to property insurers since the purchase of their homes have felt it the hardest, especially those reliant on fixed incomes.
During the 2021 - 2022 Florida Legislative Session, two bills were introduced in an attempt by the legislature to control the property insurance shortage in Florida. However, both of these bills would have passed costs to consumers even further, in an attempt to appease insurers. The bills were not passed, and the Florida legislature left session without resolving the crisis. In order for the legislature to attempt to pass another property insurance bill, they would have to be called to a special legislative session specifically to address the issue of property insurance.
However, the Governor, Florida Senate President, and Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives have thus far failed to call for a special legislative session to address the concerns of many Floridians regarding their property insurance. Should the legislature reconvene during a special session, it can be hoped that whatever they address would consider the homeowner's needs rather than the insurance corporations' paychecks.
This article is not intended to be legal advice nor create an attorney-client relationship.