A Florida insurance agency that stepped forward last month to offer a private market stand-alone flood coverage policy in Florida has started marketing the policy in six other states.
The Gainesville, Fla.-based Flood Insurance Agency began offering the private policy as an alternative to the National Flood Insurance Program, whose rates are scheduled to significantly increase as of January 1 due to the Biggert-Waters Insurance Reform Act of 2013.
Now, the agency is making the policy available in six other states including, Louisiana, South Carolina, Virginia, Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It is also scheduled to be available in Texas and several other states in January.
Flood Insurance Agency CEO Evan Hecht said he has been positively receive by regulators in all the states.
“I have been graciously welcomed in every meeting and each time I have been encouraged to begin offering our new private flood insurance program,” said Hecht.
Underwritten by the surplus lines carrier Lloyd’s Private Flood, the Flood Agency is offering policies that would provide similar coverage to the NFIP. Requiring no flood elevation certificate, the policy would provide $250,000 in coverage for property damage and $100,000 for contents.
Although the homeowners would still face higher premiums, they would be substantially less than the NFIP’s projections.
For example, in Florida, a home in a coastal region in the state that is valued at $200,000 would pay premiums of $2,970, with a $5,000 deductible. By comparison, that same home under Biggert-Waters could range into the $20,000 to $30,000 dollar range.
“It certainly isn’t going to solve the problem with the national program, but what it will do is provide relief for some homeowners who need to purchase flood,” said Florida Deputy Insurance Commissioner Richard Koon.