Another reason to “HIRE” Smellsmoke Public Adjusters

Inspections find Citizens policyholders owe $5 million more in premiums


By Julie Patel December 9, 2010 10:25 AM

Citizens Property Insurance plans to spend $41 million the next two years on home inspections aimed at revoking discounts policyholders should not be getting.

The state-backed insurer projects the inspections are worth it because the “return on investment” will be $100 million. But the projections have policyholders paying $143 million more in premiums – at a time when they’re already struggling with annual rate hikes.

Policyholders already owe $5 million more because of inspections done this year. Citizens’ contractors did about 14,000, or about a third, of the 44,220 inspections that were assigned, at a cost of $894,705.

Next year, the inspections, which aim to check discounts for features of a home that protect it from hurricanes, will include checking the home’s rebuilding cost. Some homeowners with private insurers have reported the companies increased estimates to rebuild their homes, leading to higher premiums, despite the construction slowdown.

Citizens’ underwriting committee will discuss the inspections at a meeting today.

Citizens drew fire earlier this year for how it hired a contractor to manage the inspections and do them, but it said in a report for the meeting today that its “intent is to provide better quality controls and transparency in 2011 and beyond.”

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