Texas may no longer have the highest homeowner insurance rates in the country, according to the Insurance Council of Texas. For the second year in a row, both homeowners and automobile insurance premiums in Texas have dropped on a statewide average basis. Meanwhile, homeowner rates in Florida have been increasing, the ICT announced.
The annual statewide average cost for a homeowners insurance policy in Texas for 2006 was $1,038. This represents a 4.9 percent decrease from 2005 and 5.8 percent decrease from 2004.
Dr. Bob Hartwig, president of the Insurance Information Institute in New York, says Florida has most likely overtaken Texas with the highest homeowner rates in the country. According to Hartwig homeowners insurance rates are rising in most states about 2 to 4 percent, but much more in coastal areas.
Texas auto insurance rates are also dropping. The annual statewide average cost for an automobile insurance policy for liability and physical damage coverage in Texas for 2006 was $1,054. This represents a 4.4 percent decrease from 2005 and a 9.3 percent decrease from 2004.
Mark Hanna, a spokesman for the Insurance Council of Texas, said the numbers demonstrate the competitiveness of the insurance market in the state.
“When you see premiums falling, it means insurance companies are out there fighting for your business,” Hanna said. “For consumers, it means there’s no better time than now to be shopping around for lower rates.”
The latest figures were reported in the Texas Department of Insurance’s (TDI) Quarterly Legislative Report on Market Conditions, which is provided to members of the Texas Legislature. The report offers the latest four quarters ending in the first quarter of 2006. Second quarter figures are due out next month.