The customers that derive from home insurance leads rarely like to hear about their premiums rising, but agents may soon have some positive news to inform them about if one legislator has his way.
Recently Florida Rep. Dennis Ross introduced a bill that aims to lower premiums for homeowners in the Sunshine State. Dubbed the Homeowners' Insurance Protection Act, the bill aims to establish a federal catastrophe reinsurance program that could provide insurers with the financial backing they need to administer relief more quickly.
"When a once-in-a-lifetime disaster strikes, whole communities are lost, and people want to begin to rebuild - and they want to rebuild quickly," said Ross. "Unfortunately, rebuilding is further hampered when insurance costs skyrocket after these tragedies."
He added that with the legislation in place, it would give insurers the safety net they need to ensure funds don't dry up and in the process help families affected by devastation obtain the relief they need to replace what's been lost.
Though the bill was introduced in the Florida Legislature, Ross indicates that it could be considered by other states as well by creating reinsurance catastrophe funds. Payments that go into these funds would be managed by the state, however, rather than insurers.
While Florida experiences its fair share of storms and environmental catastrophes, which plays a partial role into how premiums are established, it's not the most expensive state for rates. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Texas has the highest average premiums, while the Gem State of Idaho has the lowest.
Overall, average homeowners insurance rates nationwide increased 3.3 percent in 2010, the latest year for which data is available.