The Florida Legislature concluded a Special
Legislative Session specifically to address property insurance. The Legislature
passed two bills – Senate Bill 2D and Senate Bill 4D – and Governor DeSantis
signed each on May 26, 2022.
Both bills include changes that will impact you as a
property insurance policyholder. Below is an overview of key changes. All
changes are effective immediately.
For eligible homeowners, the My Safe Florida Home Program provides funds to obtain free hurricane mitigation inspections and matching grants to harden the home to decrease the likelihood of damage caused by a hurricane. For each $1 you spend on mitigation or hardening improvements for your home, the program provides $2 up to $10,000. Exceptions are provided for low-income homeowners. A total of $150 million is allocated for the program.
Including hurricane mitigation improvements on your home may result in a decrease in your homeowners insurance premium.
Contractors are prohibited from making written or electronic communications that encourage a homeowner to contact a contractor or public adjuster to make a property insurance claim for roof damage unless the solicitation includes the following:
For more information on contractor solicitation and fraud, visit Demolish Contractor Fraud: Step to Avoid Falling Victim.
Property insurance companies are allowed to offer a policy with a separate roof deductible of up to two percent of the Coverage A (dwelling) limit of the policy or 50 percent of the cost to replace the roof, whichever is lower.
|Separate Roof Deductible Calculation|
|Coverage A||$300,000||2% = $6,000|
|Roof Replacement Cost||$15,000||50% = $7,500|
|Separate Roof Deductible||$6,000||The lesser of the calculations.|
Insurance companies must offer a premium credit or discount for selecting a policy with a separate roof deductible.
The roof deductible does not apply to:
When a roof deductible is applied, no other deductibles under the policy may be applied.
Details regarding the roof deductible must be presented to you in a clear, concise manner. Specific language is required as a separate page of your policy. The amount of the roof deductible must be included on the declarations page.
An insurance company cannot refuse to issue or renew a homeowners insurance policy on a home with a roof less than 15 years age solely because of the roof’s age.
If a roof is 15 years old or older, an insurance company must allow a homeowner to have a roof inspection performed by an authorized inspector before requiring the roof to be replaced in order to have the policy issued or renewed. The homeowner is responsible for the cost of the inspection. The insurance company may not refuse to issue or renew a homeowners insurance policy solely because of roof age if an inspection of the roof indicates that the roof has five years or more of useful life.
Within 45 days of receiving a proof of loss statement, an insurance company must conduct a physical inspection of the property. This requirement does not apply to hurricane claims.
Insurance companies must notify policyholders of their right to receive any detailed report/estimate developed by the adjuster. The report must be provided to the requesting policyholder within seven days of the request or the completion of the report, whichever is later.
If there is a difference in the claim payment and the estimate, insurance companies must provide a reasonable explanation of the claim decision.
The bill also makes changes to the following areas:
If a roof was built, repaired, or replaced in compliance with the 2007 Florida Building Code or later and at least 25% of the roof is being repaired, replaced, or recovered:
Each building of a condominium that is three stories or higher and has reached 30 years of age must have an inspection every 10 years. If the building is near a coastline and has reached 25 years of age, it must have an inspection every 10 years.
The bill includes specific steps the condominium association and inspector must take regarding the inspections.
It also outlines how long studies on the building must be maintained and specific actions that should be taken based on the studies, including the amount of reserves to cover necessary repairs.