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We recommend that you do not wait until the last minute to obtain a homeowner’s policy in Florida. What we find is it takes may take up to two weeks to shop around and get the most affordable policy. Florida has some unusual insurance issues that are not common throughout the US such as a hurricane deductible. Insurance carriers are constantly reevaluating of their exposure to the marketplace and overall risk. In other words, the company that gave the best rates last year may not even be writing policies in a given area or segment of the market today.
We can provide you with several reputable companies in the area. We were also recommend you do a little searching on your own. You might find a wide variation in pricing and several companies might not even call you back.
If your home is in a flood zone or known high wind area, you may be required to have additional insurance. Remember, a homeowner’s policy does not cover flood related claims. Homeowners find the peace of mind of having a flood insurance policy makes sense even if their lender does not require it.
If there was a wind mitigation inspection performed, let your insurer know. There might be a substantial premium savings for some properties when this sort of inspection is performed. You also may have the flexibility of changing your deductible and hurricane deductible. Both are ways to save money in the event of the catastrophe.
If buying during hurricane season, be aware that insurance companies will not issue policies in southwest Florida if there is a named store in the Gulf of Mexico. If there is even a hint the timing of your closing might collide with an upcoming weather event, but the policy sooner rather than later. The daily cost for insuance is minimal.
You don’t have to immediately pay for an insurance binder until a few days or a week before closing but knowing who your insurance carrier will be early in the process is best. Your lender may also require a copy of the insurance binder prior to releasing the loan documents to the title company
Avoid the stress of waiting to last minute and start working on homeowners insurance after the home inspections are done and settled.