Every Florida homeowner knows that the state is no stranger to high winds. Whether it is a hurricane, tropical storm, or weather front, Floridians deal with more than their fair share of wind-related incidents. This is why programs have been put into place to help residents to lower the risk of damage from both wind and hurricanes. The Florida Wind Mitigation Program is just one way in which officials hope to mitigate this risk, especially since wind insurance is not currently essential in Florida.
Of course, given the likelihood of wind devastation in Florida, obtaining wind insurance is always a good plan. Unfortunately, wind insurance groups that are accessible in Florida and the amounts you pay may differ wildly hinging on your location. For example, if you’re living life in a beachfront estate, you will presumably deal with the highest rates. Wherever you live in Florida, you can still acquire wind insurance and may qualify for the wind mitigation program which can trim the price tag of windstorm insurance if your household is protected.
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Buying Wind Insurance in Florida
As acknowledged above, wind insurance, much like homeowners insurance, is not called for in Florida. However, it is still often requested by your mortgage company, especially if you live in a seaside area. Threats such as strong winds, hurricanes, and tropical storms are all routine hazards to those living in Florida. Picking up wind insurance won’t just bring peace of mind, it can safeguard your house and valuables from mother nature’s wrath.
When buying wind insurance, look to Florida law. It requires insurers that provide homeowners, mobile home, townhome, condo, or renters insurance to immanently incorporate coverage for wind damage provoked by National Hurricane Center dubbed hurricanes as a part of the policy. Windstorm insurance is fashioned to cover damage to the residence as well as internal damages caused by openings caused by a windstorm.
In this manner, rainfall, hail bombardment, dirt or alternative elements that penetrate your dwelling due to wind, would all fall under the umbrella of coverage. Keep in mind, homeowners who live in high-risk areas for hurricanes might have complications securing a policy in the first place. If you don’t want wind insurance included in your policy, insurance companies are compelled by statute to cede you the option of omitting coverage from your homeowners policy. You will simply have to propose a noted request in writing.
Wind Insurance Cost in Florida
Due to the innate risk in most of the state, the cost of windstorm insurance can be a bit all over the place. Hinging on where your household resides and factors such as how your home is built, rates can vary widely. The expense of wind insurance for a lavish home in Key West is going to be far more costly than insurance for a cozy home that’s located in central Florida. Location is arguably the most substantial factor impacting the price of wind insurance.
For example, a $250,000 home in Gainesville might cost around $900 for wind insurance. The same home in Miami Beach? Well, costs could be well over $3,500. If you’re distraught over the cost of wind insurance rates, you can reduce your premiums through the use of Wind Mitigation Credits. The goal of wind mitigation credits is to grant credits to homeowners that enforce definitive home advances that can lower the blanket risk of devastation due to wind.
What is the FL Wind Mitigation Program?
The Florida Wind Mitigation Program, also known as My Safe Florida, was originally conceptualized to help Florida dwellers to pare down their total prospect of property devastation from wind and hurricanes. Thanks to the program, insurance companies are obliged by Florida law to dole out diminished wind insurance rates to those who procure homes with wind-resistant components. Individuals who render those features onto their older homes are also given a discount.
According to statistics, discounts from the Florida Wind Mitigation Program are known to trim wind insurance rates by up to 42 percent. In order to qualify for those fruitful credits, you will have to have your home reviewed by a certified inspector. During the inspection, the inspector will check for the following features:
- Brunt rated glass on all exits and windows
- Roof-deck connections
- Hurricane shutters
- Totally supported roof-to-wall connectors
- Roof format and bracing (as well as roof type)
- Storm shielded doors
- Secondary water protection
If you’re worried about paying for the inspection itself, don’t be. Those who bear windstorm mitigation inspections to qualify for credits will receive the inspection for free. In order to gain a free inspection, you need to have a single-family home that works as your dominant residence. It should also be insured for less than $500,000 of dwelling coverage. Additionally, you would need to have a homestead exception to be eligible. If you do not qualify for a free mitigation inspection, you will have to pay for the costs out of pocket, luckily they are quite affordable.
What Do Inspectors Look For During A Wind Mitigation Inspection?
During the inspection to qualify for wind mitigation credits, the inspector will look for the aforementioned preventative measures, along with any additional damage prevention measures you have taken to improve your home. They may also recommend additional preventive measures that you can implement after the inspection. By making the recommended improvements, you can qualify for a larger number of credits and receive an even more substantial discount.