Changes to roof requirements for homeowners’ insurance in Florida may impact your premiums and roof insurance cover. Roof insurance for Florida homes is a tricky issue. During the hurricane season, from June through November, the Sunshine State gets hit by the greatest number of hurricanes and tropical storms in the country.
One of the reasons for changes to home insurance laws in Florida is to cover the considerable costs of repairing dwellings. According to statistics, over 2 million homes are at risk of storm damage, with combined insurance bills totaling over $500,000. As you’ve guessed, Florida tops the list for most homes at risk and highest insurance payouts.
At the heart of the legislation to reform Florida’s home insurance is a plan to create a $3 billion reinsurance fund. In addition, insurance providers could no longer deny roof insurance to homeowners who have older roofs.
How could the homeowners’ insurance roof requirements for Florida homes impact you? How can you prevent extensive storm damage to your roof to avoid making insurance claims? Please read on to find the answer to these questions and more.
Roof Requirements for Homeowners Insurance in Florida — At a Glance
Here is a brief overview of reforms Florida lawmakers are proposing in the state’s property insurance market.
- Create a $2 billion fund to insulate insurers from risk.
- Homeowners with roofs under 15 years old can get coverage.
- Roofs with more than 25 percent damage would be repaired rather than replaced
- Many properties will qualify to get grants up to $10,000 to retrofit homes, making them less susceptible to hurricane damage.
- Insurance providers can include a roof deductible of up to two percent of the dwelling limit.
- Limits to attorney fees in lawsuits against insurance companies.
- Roofing companies could no longer advertise by going door to door or handing out flyers.
Why Changes to the Roof Requirements for Homeowners Insurance
Florida’s crisis-hit home insurance industry requires urgent reforms to protect homeowners and insurance companies. The Senate Bill 2-D (SB 2D) aims to reduce rising insurance costs, crack down on trivial lawsuits against insurance companies, and increase insurance claim transparency.
Here are some essential points affecting Florida homeowners who take out home insurance.
The Reinsurance to Assist Policy (RAP) will create a $2 billion fund to benefit policyholders and reduce the insurer’s risk. Insurance companies will be required to file a supplemental rate filing and then provide relief to policyholders.
The law states that insurers don’t pay premiums for coverage; instead, they must reduce premiums for homeowners.
Insurance companies can’t deny homeowners insurance on a roof less than 15 years old. Instead, the homeowner can arrange for a professional roof inspection. And if the assessment shows at least five years of life remaining, the insurer cannot deny coverage. If fewer than five years are left, you may need to replace the entire roof.
Have you had a roof insurance claim denied? If so, please read this article to find out how to appeal a denial and reverse the roof insurance claim.
Adjustment of Claims
Another change that Florida homeowners should be aware of is the response time of the insurance company. The insurer must contact you within 45 days of receiving a claim for non-hurricane roof damage. However, the 45-day provision doesn’t apply to hurricane-related claims.
In addition, you can request to receive a detailed report from the insurer’s adjuster that estimates the amount of the loss. And the insurer must explain all discrepancies if the claim payment is less than the adjuster’s loss.
My Safe Florida Home Program
One of the ways to reduce the number of insurance claims and premiums is to make your home safer and resistant to hurricane damage. The My Safe Florida Home Program is a $150 million fund to provide financial assistance to homeowners.
Here are some facts about who is eligible for the home improvement grant:
- You have homestead protection on your property.
- The insured value of the home is $500,000 or less.
- The property should be in the “wind-borne debris region.”
- The property must have undergone a hurricane mitigation inspection after July 1, 2008.
Under the scheme, Florida homeowners can receive up to $10,000 for hurricane mitigation. However, the state provides $2 in funds for every $1 the homeowner provides. Therefore, you must spend at least $5,000 or your own cash to qualify for the total amount.
Acceptable improvements under hurricane mitigation include the following:
- Reinforce roof-to-wall connections.
- Secure gable ends.
- Upgrade roof covering to code plus.
- Install a secondary water barrier for the roof.
- Strengthen roof-deck attachments.
Attorney fees and roof requirements for homeowners insurance in Florida
The SB D-2 also caps attorney fees, which should result in lower premiums for Florida homeowners. The new law means that it’s no longer possible to reassign settlements from homeowners to contractors. This means that there are no longer incentives to file frivolous lawsuits.
How to Protect Your Florida Home’s Roof from Storm Damage
Tropical storms and hurricanes are common occurrences in Florida. In addition, roofs in Florida take a pounding from intense sunshine and high humidity. Therefore, it makes sense to maximize your roof’s protection.
The first step is to arrange for an annual roof inspection before hurricane season starts. You can look for signs of damage like missing shingles, blocked gutters, rot, or rust (on metal roofs). You should also ensure that gutters and flashing are securely fitted.
It’s also a good idea to arrange for a professional roof inspection. For example, you can call Code Engineered Systems to get your roof inspected and repair any damage. We service the entire Tampa Bay area.
Also, seal any cracks or holes outside your home. Driving rain and strong winds can force water up walls and into the tiniest cracks. Additionally, hurricane winds will severely damage any loosely fitting doors or windows.
It is vital to ensure that water travels away from your property. Therefore, clean gutters annually or twice yearly to ensure that water flows freely from your property. Water entering your house under the eaves can cause rot, dampness, and mold.
Call Us Today
Code Engineered Systems is your local professional roofing contractor in Tampa Bay, FL.
We can provide the best service in the area to mitigate hurricane damage and assist with insurance claims. Please call us today at 813-373-9088 or fill out this form to get a free roof estimate or arrange a roof inspection