Author Archives: Florida Insurance Quotes LNC

11 Management and Professional Liability Insurance

Businesses face risks every day. Management and professional liability insurance is designed to protect you and your business against the potentially devastating costs of those exposures. Without adequate insurance protection, your clients, your reputation, your company and even your personal assets may be at risk.

Losses and lawsuits can come from any direction. You need a trusted advisor with the vision to help you anticipate those risks and determine the best coverage options for your business. We can help protect businesses of all sizes with a full range of customizable management and professional liability insurance coverages.

L and C Insurance Providers  Knows Management and Professional Liability Insurance

L and C Insurance offers dedicated policies for private companies, public companies, nonprofit organizations, financial institutions and professional services, as well as managed care organizations, healthcare organizations and community homeowners associations. With L and C insurance, you’ll find the coverage that fits your unique business needs, responsibilities and exposures. Choose either standalone coverage or a suite of coverages on a single policy. We has the flexibility to adapt to you and your business.

Who Needs Management and Professional Liability Insurance?

Consider Management and Professional Liability insurance to cover the unique risks that your organization faces in the course of doing business. In addition to providing the peace of mind that your business is protected, proper coverage can also help give your business the tools and claim resources to respond to an incident. From employee-related issues to cyber risks, this suite of products can help companies get the coverage to compete in today’s marketplace.

What is Management and Professional Liability Insurance?

Management and Professional Liability insurance refers to the suite of products that Traveler offers L and C insurance can help protect organizations from the risks of operating in the 21st century. Regardless of whether your company was at fault, these risks can come from customers, who perceive that you made a mistake that caused them financial loss or reputational harm, or from employees, who could claim that they were treated unfairly.

Management and Professional Liability insurance coverage from us can help minimize the potential financial damage your business could incur when faced with such claims. Talk to your independent agent to learn more about your specific risks and which products may be right for your organization.

Select a Product:

  • CyberRisk Insurance

    CyberRisk insurance is designed to cover the costs associated with a cyber event or a security breach, including costs for forensic investigations, legal expenses and regulatory defense expenses and fines.
  • Directors & Officers (D&O) Liability Insurance

    D&O Liability insurance helps cover defense costs, awards and settlements arising out of an actual or alleged wrongful act, including lawsuits brought against an organization’s board of directors and/or officers.
  • Employment Practices Liability Insurance
    This liability insurance provides coverage for defense costs and damages related to employment-related claims including allegations of wrongful termination, discrimination, workplace harassment and retaliation.
  • ERISA Fidelity Insurance
    This insurance covers an employee benefit plan against losses caused by acts of fraud or dishonesty such as theft, embezzlement or forgery.
  • Errors & Omissions (E&O) Insurance
    E&O insurance protects businesses and individuals against allegations of inadequate work or negligent actions.
  • Fidelity and Crime Insurance
    This coverage protects against losses due to employee dishonesty, credit card forgery, computer fraud and theft, and the disappearance or destruction of property.
  • Fiduciary Liability Insurance
    This liability insurance covers breaches for those involved in the management of a company-sponsored employee retirement or health plan.
  • Financial Institutions Bond
    This coverage is designed to protect against the actions of dishonest employees, protecting a financial institution’s balance sheet, assets and stakeholders’ investments.
  • Identity Fraud Expense Reimbursement Insurance
    This coverage provides for the financial and time-related costs you, your employees or members may incur when someone uses stolen personal information to commit a crime or fraud in your/their name.
  • Kidnap & Ransom Insurance
    This insurance typically covers payments to kidnappers or extortionists, loss of ransom in transit and other expenses incurred as a result of a kidnapping.
  • Nonprofit Directors & Officers Liability Insurance
    This coverage can help protect a nonprofit organization’s mission and vision when allegations of wrongful acts are brought against the organization and its directors and officers.
  • Property and Casualty for Financial Institutions
    This insurance helps cover the real and personal property that your financial institution owns, as well as the liabilities related to your operations.

11 What Is General Liability Insurance?

Commercial general liability insurance (CGL) protects your business in the event that someone makes a claim against it for bodily harm or property damage. On a daily basis, your company touches the lives of many people, including contractors, clients, customers and the general public. And, at any given point, one or several of these people could claim that your business has caused them bodily injury or property damage and initiate legal recourse. Travelers helps you prepare and protect against these types of risks with our wide range of general and business liability insurance solutions.

What Does Commercial General Liability Insurance Cover?

L and C Insurance Providers commercial general liability business insurance covers a variety of claims for damages that can result from:

  • Injuries that happen on your property, such as those from slips or falls
  • Bodily injury or property damage to a third party caused by your work, products or your employees’ activities
  • Liability of others assumed in specifically defined contracts
  • Libel, slander or business disparagement
  • Copyright infringement in your advertisement

Who Is Commercial General Liability Insurance Right For?

If it’s possible that someone could claim bodily injury or property damage due to your business operations, your employees’ actions or your services or products, you should have general liability insurance. Travelers offers commercial general liability insurance options that protect against the unique risks of businesses in a wide range of industries.

Who Needs General Liability Insurance?

Commercial general liability insurance helps cover the costs of claims made against your business by people who experience physical injury or property damage while on your business premises, while your employees engage in their work duties, or while using your products. Those costs can include legal defense, judgment or settlement. If you or your employees interact with customers face-to-face, have access to customers’ property, advertise or market your services, work on job sites or enter into contracts that require general liability coverage, then commercial general liability insurance is right for you.

11 Protect Your Florida Home from These 10 Modern Plagues

Florida Insurance Plagues. The Truth You NEED To Know

Locusts, blood, darkness … While Floridians don’t exactly have to deal with the same plagues faced by the Ancient Egyptians, Florida’s unique environment presents homeowners with their own set of challenges. 

What modern day plagues do Florida homeowners face and what can we do to protect our homes and families against them?

Plague #1: Flooding

For Floridians, summer months are often associated with afternoon rainstorms. Over time, these heavy rains can cause flooding, especially in low-elevation and coastal regions. The water probably won’t turn to blood like in Ancient Egypt, but it can certainly darken as clogged storm drains cause dirt and debris to float through your neighborhood.

How to Protect Your Home: recommends taking the following steps to prepare your home for a flood:

  • Clear debris from gutters and downspouts
  • Anchor fuel tanks
  • Elevate all electrical components (switches, sockets, circuit breakers, wiring) and appliances at least one foot above your home’s estimated flood elevation
  • Move furniture, valuables and other important documents to a safe, secure place
  • .

Is your Florida home located in a flood zone? Click here to learn more about flood maps.

Plague #2: Bufo Toads

Originally brought to Florida to help eliminate pests in sugar cane fields, Bufo toads are usually found in yards where pets run around freely. These exotic amphibians are highly poisonous and deadly to pets and even small children if the secreted toxin comes in contact with the mouth.

How to Protect Your Home: Watch small children carefully while they are in the backyard to prevent the risk of them touching a Bufo toad or other dangerous item, and then putting their hands in their mouth. Don’t keep pet food outside – it attracts Bufo toads as well as other bothersome animals and pests.

Plague #3: Termites

Termites are pesky wood-destroying insects that cause damage to both structural and non-structural timbers of a home. The most common species of damage-causing termites found in Florida are Drywood termites and Subterranean termites.

In addition, there are a variety of termite species that are unique to Florida, including the Asian subterranean termite, the Nose termite and the Florida Dampwood termite.

Common Signs of Termite Damage:

  • Discolored or sagging sheetrock on ceilings or walls
  • Buckling or sagging floors 
  • Loose tiles
  • Hardwood floor slats that pop up
  • Bubbling or sagging laminate flooring
  • Tiny pinpoint holes in the drywall
  • Bubbling or peeling paint
  • Wood that crumbles easily
  • Jammed doors or windows
  • Wood that sounds hollow when tapped

How to Protect Your Home: Have a qualified expert inspect your home for termites on a regular basis, usually once a year. Consult with a pest control what conditions in your home may be promoting termite activity. Determine what treatments will be most effective in preventing termites based on your home’s construction and signs of nearby activity.

Plague #4: Lovebugs

One of the most annoying pests to plague Florida is the lovebug. If you’ve ever driven on the highway during lovebug season, you know exactly what we mean…

Unfortunately for Floridians, lovebug season is about to begin… lovebug flights typically occur in the spring and fall, between April and September. Since lovebug pairs are weak fliers, they tend to stay near emergence sites when there is little or no wind, and are most abundant in moist, grassy habitats.

Legend has it that the explosive appearance of lovebugs in Florida is the result of a genetic engineering experiment gone awry at the University of Florida. Is this story true or just a myth? Take a look .

How to Protect Your Home: While these pesky creatures are not necessarily harmful to our homes, or us we can all agree that they are quite a nuisance, especially during summer months spent outside. To prevent lovebugs from invading your home or backyard barbecue, you can add screens to windows and doors, or use an exterior fan.

Plague #5: Wild Animals

From forest areas to swamplands, Florida’s diverse landscape creates the perfect environment for a vast array of wild animals. Unfortunately, many Florida homes are in close proximity to these wild animal habitats. Alligators, deer, and even Florida panthers have been spotted roaming around backyards and residential neighborhoods throughout the state.

How to Protect Your Home: To prevent wild and potentially dangerous animals from crashing your next barbecue, install a fence around the perimeter of your backyard, and don’t leave food sitting outside for extended periods of time.

Plague #6: Fire

Florida thunderstorms can ignite homes and other structures within seconds; resulting in catastrophic damage and personal loss. Every year, lightning starts approximately 4,400 house fires, costing an average of $283 million in damages.

How to Protect Your Home: Reduce the likelihood of a lightning strike igniting your home on fire by installing lightning rods. While lightning rods don’t reduce the chance of your home being struck by lightning, they do provide a path for lightning to reach the ground without causing a fire in the process.

Plague #7: Hurricanes

Capable of creating strong-force winds, tornadoes, heavy rain and flooding, hurricanes are one of the most severe “plagues” to strike Florida, causing catastrophic damage to homes along coastlines and hundreds of miles inland.

How to Protect Your Home: With the start of the 2021 hurricane season just around the corner, now’s the time to start thinking about how you can protect your home against high winds, potential flooding and debris damage. Take a look at our top hurricane preparation tips.

Plague #8: Bedbugs

Bedbugs are considered one of the leading hotel fears of the 21st century. But what happens when these pests enter your home? Bedbugs typically hide in mattresses, box springs, bed frames and headboards, and over time may scatter throughout the bedroom and nearby rooms.

How to Protect Your Home: If bedbugs do invade your home, WebMD recommends the following treatments:

  • Clean bedding, linens, curtains and clothing in hot water and dry on the highest setting
  • Using a stiff brush, scrub mattress seams
  • Vacuum the bed and surrounding area frequently
  • Enclose the mattress and box spring in a tight, zippered cover to prevent bedbugs from entering or escaping
  • Get rid of clutter (or bedbug hiding places) around the bed

Plague #9: Burglary

According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, one burglary occurs ever three minutes in Florida. Home burglaries can seriously “plague” a home, resulting in property damage and loss, injuries and sometimes even death.

How to Protect Your Home: In addition to installing a security system, there are several precautions homeowners can take to defend their home against burglary and break-ins. Click here to view our top tips.

Plague #10: Toxic Mold

Florida homes are especially prone to mold growth due to our humid climate. While the presence of mold in the air is nothing to be concerned with, it is important to prevent mold from growing indoors. Excessive exposure to mold  can lead to health problems such as allergies, irritant effects, infection and toxic effects.

How to Protect Your Home: According to , the best and easiest way to prevent mold growth in your home is keeping it clean and dry. Without water and moisture, mold cannot grow.

They also recommend the following prevention tips:

  • Stop the water – Repair all leaks. Seal cracks in walls and around windows.
  • Disinfect it – Clean moisture-prone areas regularly with 10% solution of bleach.
  • Keep it clean – Clean up and dry out building materials and carpets within 24 hours of a spill or flooding.
  • Keep it dry – DO NOT carpet bathrooms or basements. Keep humidity levels below 60% and vent moisture from showers and cooking to the outside of your home.

11 Debunking 7 Popular Florida Flood Insurance Myths

When it rains, it pours in Florida!

Every year, Florida receives at least 50 inches of rain, with most rainfall occurring in the summer months. And you know what comes with rain… floods!

Floods are the number one natural disaster in the United States, and Florida is the leading state for flood damage, with more than $117 million in flood-related claims in 2014 alone.

As we enter Florida’s rainy season, we’re debunking seven common myths about flood insurance, so you can make sure your home is properly covered in the event of a flood.

Myth: Flood coverage is included in your homeowner’s insurance policy.

Fact: Losses due to flooding are not usually covered under most homeowner’s insurance policies. We recommend adding a Florida Flood Insurance policy to ensure complete protection of your home in case of a flood.

A National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Flood Insurance policy provides coverage for up to $250,000 on the structure of your home and up to $100,000 on personal property, all at very affordable rates regulated by the federal government.

Myth: Flood insurance can only be purchased through the National Flood Insurance Program directly.

Fact: NFIP flood insurance is sold through private insurance companies and agents, and the federal government provides a 100% guarantee. In some flood zones, flood insurance can be obtained for less than $1.40 per day (average is $503 per year). Call us today to discuss your flood insurance needs

Myth: The NFIP does not cover flooding caused by hurricanes or overflow of rivers or tidal waters.

Fact: The NFIP defines a flood as a general and temporary condition during which normally dry land is partially or completely inundated.

Flood insurance covers damage caused by hurricanes, rivers, and tidal waters as long as the floodwater either covers at least two acres of your property or two adjacent properties, one of which is yours.

Myth: You only need flood insurance if you live in a high-risk flood zone.

Fact: According to the NFIP, if you live outside a floodplain or in a low-to-moderate flood-risk area, you can purchase flood insurance at a lower cost. You may even qualify for the Preferred Risk Policy that provides contents coverage beginning at $39 per year and building-plus-contents coverage beginning at $119 a year.

Myth: You can’t purchase flood insurance if your property has been flooded.

Fact: If your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program, you are eligible to purchase flood insurance even after your home has been flooded.

Myth: Federal disaster assistance will cover flood damage.

Fact: Before a community is eligible for disaster assistance, it must be declared a federal disaster area – and this only happens in less than half of all flooding events. Additionally, if you are not insured and receive federal disaster assistance following a flood, you must purchase flood insurance to remain eligible for future disaster relief.

11 What is Business Owners Policy ( BOP Insurance ) ?

What Does a BOP Cover?

A business owner’s policy (BOP) combines two types of coverages to protect your small business against a variety of claims. Its coverage components include:

The general liability portion of a BOP safeguards your business in the event someone makes a claim against you or your business. General liability insurance provides protection from liability lawsuits resulting from things like a customer slipping on a wet floor, a defective product causing damage to a client’s property, or claims that the products or services you provided caused injury. It can also protect you from libel, slander and certain legal claims related to advertising.

The property portion of a BOP helps protect business property you own, lease or rent, including your buildings, equipment, furniture and inventory. It helps cover repair or replacement costs of stolen, damaged or destroyed property, including property that isn’t yours but was in your care. It can also cover loss of income and covered expenses like rent, payroll and other financial responsibilities while your property is being repaired or replaced after a fire or other covered loss.

A LNCInsuranceProviders BOP builds in many specialized coverages that can be tailored to the unique risks facing your business. Plus, it offers a wide variety of optional coverages that can offer additional protection. For example:

  • Hired and Non Owned Auto — covers your business on those occasions when you rent, lease or borrow a vehicle on a short term basis, or when your employees use their personal vehicles for company business.
  • Cyber Liability, Including Data Breach — protects your business against the costs of data breaches and other cyber security issues.
  • Crime — protects against the costs of theft of money and securities.
  • Contractor’s Equipment — helps pay for repair or replacement of tools and equipment if they are lost, stolen, or damaged.

How Can a BOP Help Small Businesses?

If you are a small business owner, a Travelers business owner’s policy offers valuable protection if you encounter scenarios like the following:

  • A customer trips over a loose wire while visiting your business, falls and fractures their wrist. They sue you to cover their medical expenses.
  • One of your contractors loses control of a piece of equipment, which damages the wall of a client’s home or accidentally breaks an item of value while performing their work.
  • A pipe bursts and floods one of your workrooms, damaging business-critical equipment and some of your products.
  • A fire destroys one of your buildings, leading you to temporarily shut down part of your business. Yet, despite being shut down, you still have to pay rent and your employees.

Who Is a Business Owner’s Policy Right For?

LNCInsuranceProviders BOP is built to protect many types of small businesses, including:

  • Commercial Real Estate
  • Contractors
  • Financial Services
  • Garages
  • Healthcare
  • Manufacturers
  • Personal Care Services
  • Pet Care Services
  • Printers and Publishers
  • Religious and Cultural Organizations
  • Restaurant and Food Service
  • Retail
  • Service Businesses
  • Technology Services
  • Wholesalers and Distributors

11 Protect Your Business with a Distracted Driving Policy.

Employees who drive during the course of their work may also drive up their employer’s risk factors if they fall prey to distractions behind the wheel. The 2017 Travelers Risk Index indicates that 30% of all businesses worry “a great deal” or “some” about distracted driving putting their company at risk. Yet, the data provides that 27% of employees who drive in the course of their work say their boss has called and/or texted even though their boss knew they were driving.1

Considering the potential dangers and costs associated with vehicle accidents, distraction caused by mobile device use is a key problem for employers to address. However, according to the Travelers Risk Index, only 27% of employers reported having a formal policy on distracted driving that was strictly enforced.

A clear distracted driving policy can help to improve driver safety and the safety of anyone that may be involved in a distracted driving accident. Here are four steps to help make your distracted driving policy more effective:

  1. Create – Create a formal, written policy stating your organization’s position on mobile device use while driving. Consider other distractions as well. A formal policy is the foundation of your distracted driving prevention program. It should apply to everyone in your organization who drives a vehicle on company business, whether they drive a delivery truck, a sales vehicle, or use a personal vehicle to run office errands.
  2. Communicate – To be most effective, safety policies should be communicated on a regular basis. Have every employee who drives on company business acknowledge in writing that he or she has read, understands and will follow the policy. But don’t stop there. Use emails, newsletters, bulletin board postings, driver training and signage in vehicles to communicate your policy in various ways throughout the year.
  3. Follow – Managers and office staff should lead by example. Let employees know that while they are on the road, no phone call or email is more important than their safety. To further prove that point, managers and other staff need to refrain from calling or texting employees until they are safely parked.
  4. Promote – Managers are in the best position to promote safe driving practices and the expected behaviors of those that drive for any business purpose. They can take steps to understand who is following these policies, and actively reinforce the desired behavior.

11 Why Is Florida Homeowners Insurance Going Up?

The perfect storm that has been brewing in Florida’s property insurance marketplace has finally made landfall—and it’s wreaking havoc on homeowners insurance rates.

The three leading causes of premium spikes include Assignment of Benefits fraud, Hurricane Irma, and reinsurance claims. Let’s look at the impact of these three factors to answer the question: why is Florida homeowners insurance going up?

Cause No. 1: Assignment of Benefits Fraud

What is an AOB?

An Assignment of Benefits (AOB) is an agreement that transfers a homeowner’s insurance claims rights to a third party. Signing an AOB form gives someone else the power to file claims, make repair decisions, and collect insurance payments on the homeowner’s behalf.

For example, if a home is damaged, a homeowner calls a repair contractor, like a roofer or plumber. The contractor then gets the homeowner to sign an AOB. That contractor is now free to file a claim on the homeowner’s behalf and directly collect a check from the insurance company.

Entering into an AOB agreement seems like a tempting offer since most homeowners prefer not to be involved in the claims process. However, handing over insurance claims rights to a contractor is hardly ever a good idea.

How AOB Scams Work

Many things can go wrong when a contractor works directly with an insurance company. Without the homeowner’s oversight, they can easily overestimate the value of their work to pocket more money. When an insurance company recognizes an amount has been inflated and refuses to pay the padded bill, the contractor may hire a lawyer and sue the insurance company. And without realizing it, the homeowner becomes embroiled in a messy, pricy lawsuit.

How does AOB fraud impact homeowners insurance ?

Both insurance companies and homeowners pay a steep price for AOB abuse. Insurance companies are forced to either pay inflated repair bills or sue contractors and pay for the cost of defense, whether they fight, or settle, that lawsuit. As a result, many carriers must petition for higher rates or stop issuing policies in Florida. Homeowners, on the other hand, get stuck with costly and substandard repairs, hefty lawyer’s fees, and, consequently, higher insurance premiums.

Every Florida homeowner with an insurance policy—even those who play by the rules—ends up paying the price for AOB abuse. That’s why it is crucial homeowners be able to spot home repair insurance scams.

Cause No.2: Hurricane Irma

The storm’s statewide devastation

Hurricane Irma struck Florida twice on September 10, 2017, first as a Category 4 at Cudjoe Key and then again as a Category 3 on Marco Island. The storm unleashed 130 mph winds, spawned 23 tornadoes, and produced heavy rain across the state. By the time Irma crossed the border into Georgia as a tropical storm on September 11, it had caused close to $50 billion in damages, making it the costliest hurricane in Florida’s history.

Irma’s impact on the insurance market

While Hurricane Irma hit Florida in 2017, insurance companies saw claims from the storm steadily increase through 2019—two years after the storm’s initial impact. That’s because a statewide law gives Florida homeowners up to three years from the date a hurricane makes landfall to report a hurricane claim.

Irma’s cost to homeowners today

The high number of re-opened claims over three years, combined with AOBs, led to claims inflation and steady loss creep, which factored into this year’s reinsurance renewals. As a result, Florida homeowners faced significant insurance rate hikes in 2020.

According to Reinsurance News’ directory of major insurance and reinsurance loss events, Hurricane Irma resulted in an overall economic loss of $67 billion, including a reinsurance industry loss of $32 billion. But what is reinsurance, and how does it factor into homeowners insurance cost?

Cause No. 3: Reinsurance Claims

What is reinsurance?

Dubbed “insurance for insurance companies” by the Reinsurance Association of America, reinsurance is a form of insurance purchased by carriers to lower their risk.

The goal is to make sure no single insurance company is exposed to a significantly massive disaster—like a hurricane.

Because in the insurance business, it’s a matter of when (not if) disaster strikes. Reinsurance limits the amount of loss an insurance company can potentially suffer, which protects them from financial ruin and policyholders from uncovered losses.

Why reinsurance matters to policyholders

Reinsurance protects carriers from bearing the entire financial toll of a catastrophic event, like Hurricane Irma. And by transferring portions of their risks, insurance companies can make their premiums more affordable for homeowners. That’s a good thing for policyholders.

How reinsurance factors into homeowners insurance costs

Between 2005 and 2016, not a single hurricane made landfall in Florida. But the tides changed after a slew of hurricanes, including Harvey, Irma and Maria, made landfall in 2017, costing close to $283 billion in damages and resulting in one of the costliest loss years on record for the insurance industry. Meanwhile, the estimated insured losses for 2018’s Hurricane Michael in Florida reached $7.4 billion, according to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation.

For insurance carriers, the increase in the intensity and frequency of extreme weather events, such as major hurricanes, has drastically changed the cost of doing business in Florida. When factored into reinsurance renewals, the costs of the 2017-2018 hurricane season alone caused significant rate hikes for Florida homeowners in 2019 and 2020.

What’s on the Horizon

Rising cost of Florida Homeowner Insurance

AOB fraud, Hurricane Irma, and reinsurance costs have all contributed to rising homeowner insurance rates for Floridians. However, there has been some reform, especially regarding AOB scams.

In May 2019, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed House Bill 7065: Insurance Assignment Agreements, which addressed AOB abuse. The reform bill aimed to curb AOB fraud which has resulted in rising insurance costs for Floridians. (Download our quick guide on how to avoid falling victim to AOB fraud and abuse).

“I thank the Florida Legislature for passing meaningful AOB reform, which has become a racket in recent years,” DeSantis said. “This legislation will protect Florida consumers from predatory insurance practices.”

While reforms for Florida’s AOB crisis helps address some of the costs, there will always be hurricane-related losses, especially since homeowners have three years from the date a hurricane makes landfall to file for loss or damages. And that means demands for rate increases from reinsurers aren’t likely to drop anytime soon, forcing insurance companies to increase premiums for homeowners.

11 Does Your Homeowners Insurance Cover Water Damage?

Water damage is one of the leading claims filed by homeowners and accounts for billions of dollars in losses annually in the U.S. Yet many homeowners are unaware of what types of water perils are—and are not—covered by their home insurance policy. Unfortunately, this can put homeowners in a slippery and stressful situation. Imagine having to file a water-related claim, and then discovering the damage is only partially covered—or worse, not covered at all by your home insurance policy. Does your homeowners insurance cover water damage and common water perils? Let’s find out…

Does Home Insurance Cover Broken or Burst Pipes?

Whether caused by clogs, water pressure spikes, or even frozen water, burst pipes are one of the top causes of water damage in homes. Excessive water force may cause pipes to swell and eventually break, spouting water everywhere and damaging floors, carpeting, drywall, and insulation.

Facts about Leaky and Burst Pipes

The average home loses 14 percent of its water to leaks.

  • Water-damage claims, mostly from leaky or burst pipes, are the leading cause of increased home insurance rates.
  • Water damage caused by plumbing failures and frozen pipes is the second leading cause of property loss.

What Type of Insurance Do I Need?

Water damage from a burst pipe is typically covered under a standard HO3 homeowner’s insurance policy. However, damage caused by sewer and drain backups is not usually covered. For complete protection in case of a backup-related incident, you can add sewer backup coverage to your policy.

What’s Covered?

Most HO3 homeowners policies cover water damage caused by a burst pipe as long as the incident is sudden and accidental. If water damage occurs outside of your home, you’ll need to be able to demonstrate that a burst pipe was the culprit. Keep in mind that water damage resulting from unresolved maintenance issues, such as ongoing leaking near a sink faucet or washing machine, will probably not be covered, and your claim may be denied.

Does Home Insurance Cover Floods?

A flood is any overflow of water caused by storm surge or rising water from heavy rain—something you see a lot of in Florida. Remember, you don’t need to live near a lake, river or the coast to experience a flood.

Facts about Floods:

  • Floods are the leading natural disaster in the U.S.
  • 25 percent of flood losses come from low- to moderate-risk areas in Florida.
  • On average, as little as two inches of water in your home can cause $7,800 or more in damage.

What Type of Insurance Do I Need?

Losses due to flooding are not typically covered under your home insurance policy, so we recommend purchasing a supplementary Florida Flood Insurance policy for complete protection. Flood insurance policies are issued by First Community Insurance Company, which is authorized by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to sell flood insurance. In some flood zones, you can purchase flood insurance for about $1.40 per day, and it’s 100 percent guaranteed by the U.S. government. Remember, flood insurance requires a 30-day waiting period before it’s activated, so don’t delay.

What’s Covered?

Flood insurance covers damage caused by overflow of inland or tidal waters that have inundated two or more properties, at least one of which is yours. Keep in mind that flood damage from wind-driven rain is not covered under flood insurance. When rain enters your home through a wind-damaged window, door, wall, or roof, the National Flood Insurance Program considers the resulting damage to be windstorm-related, not flood-related.

Does Home Insurance Cover Wind-Driven Rain?

Windstorms are weather events that produce winds and violent gusts strong enough to cause significant property damage, such as hurricanes and tornadoes.

Facts about Windstorms:

  • Windstorms can have wind speeds exceeding 200 miles per hour.
  • Heavy winds cause about $1 billion in damages in the U.S. every year.
  • Approximately 85 percent of all windstorm-related insurance claims result from roof damage.

What Type of Insurance Do I Need?

Windstorm insurance covers damages caused by hurricane-force winds, tornados, hail, and other weather events with wind gusts exceeding 35 miles per hour. In hurricane-prone states like Florida, you may be required to purchase a separate windstorm policy to provide complete protection of your home.

What’s Covered?

Windstorm insurance typically covers damages to the structure of your home and the personal belongings inside of it. Most policies also include coverage for detached structures such as garages, sheds, and swimming pools. Windstorm events like hurricanes are often followed by storm surge and flooding, which are not covered. A flood insurance policy must be purchased separately to cover any damages related to flooding, even if the flooding was caused by a windstorm.

Does Home Insurance Cover Mold?

One common and gross side effect of water damage is mold. In addition to being hazardous to your health, mold can depreciate the value of your home by discoloring walls and ceilings, rotting wooden floorboards and siding, destroying insulation, or emitting a musty odor.

Facts about Mold:

  • The most common indoor molds are Cladosporium, Penicillium, Alternaria, and Aspergillus.
  • Mold can cause nose stuffiness, coughing or wheezing, and irritation of the throat, eyes and skin.

What Type of Insurance Do I Need?

Most home insurance companies cover mold growth resulting from a covered water peril. While some companies have begun taking steps to avoid or limit their exposure to mold claims , People’s Trust understands that mold must be promptly remediated in order to prevent further damage.

What’s Covered?

Your standard HO3 homeowner’s insurance policy will most likely cover the costs of eliminating mold caused by a burst pipe or other covered water peril. However, your policy will not cover the cost to remove mold caused by neglected maintenance issues, such as ongoing water leaks, humidity problems, or landscaping and drainage issues. Additionally, mold that develops from flooding will not be covered under your standard homeowner’s policy.

Does Home Insurance Cover Roof Leaks?

There’s nothing more comforting than knowing you have a safe roof over your head. Your home’s roof is the first line of defense in protecting you and your belongings from earth, wind, and fire (and more)! But even roofs have their weaknesses…

Facts about Roof Leaks:

  • Roofs, on average, last only half of their designed lifetime.
  • Moisture from leaking roofs causes more damage to homes than termites, fires, and storms combined.
  • 40 percent of all building-related problems are caused by water entering through the roof.

What Type of Insurance Do I Need?

A standard HO3 homeowner’s insurance policy typically covers water damage caused by a roof leak. Whether or not it’s covered depends on the cause of the leak.

What’s Covered?

If the roof leak was caused by Mother Nature (e.g. rain, hurricanes or tornadoes) or other sudden, uncontrollable events, your home insurance policy will likely cover the cost of the associated water damage. On the other hand, roof leaks resulting from failure to maintain your roof as it ages will not be covered. That’s why it’s so important to have your roof inspected and repair or replace it as needed. Because carrier rules and regulations differ among home insurance companies, it’s important to review your policy to make sure you have the insurance you need so you can enjoy peace of mind knowing your home is covered in the event of a water loss.

11 Vacation and Second Home Insurance: What You Need to Know

How to Insure Your Second Home

Many people consider buying a second home for several reasons, including:

  • Vacation home
  • Rental property
  • Tax benefits
  • Long-term profits
  • Flexibility in where you live

No matter what reason you choose to buy a second home, it’s important to protect your large investments with insurance. Just like your primary home, you should obtain homeowners insurance with coverage appropriate to the location of your second dwelling. However, it is essential to understand that there are special considerations for your second home that you may not be aware of.

Check Your Primary Homeowners Insurance Policy

First, check your current homeowners insurance policy to see if it will cover a second home. Some policies may extend coverage, which could make insuring your second place a breeze. However, many insurance companies only cover one home because every home is unique and comes with its own coverage needs. For instance, your vacation home may be in a high-risk area for floods or earthquakes.

Another example could be that your new property is in an area that is prone to vandalism or theft. No matter the reason, it’s important to consult with a homeowners insurance company in your area to assess the needs of your second home.

Insurance Considerations for Your Second Home

Buying an insurance policy for your second home is a lot like buying a policy for your primary home. However, there are some risk factors associated with second homes that may change your insurance rate. Before purchasing a new insurance policy, you should determine the coverage needs for your second home. Many factors will play a significant role in the home’s coverage, including:

  • How often the home is lived in
  • The location of the second home
  • The features included with the second home
  • Any natural hazards near the second home (such as a 100-year floodplain)

How Often the Home Is Occupied

Second homes may not be used or occupied as often as primary homes, especially if it’s a vacation home. The home vacancy is considered a risk for insurance companies, which can increase your rates. There are a few reasons that home vacancy is considered a higher risk:

  • The home could be more prone to theft and vandalism
  • Second homes could have more hazards that go unnoticed
  • Accidents could occur that you would be liable for even if you weren’t there

For instance, if someone uses your pool and has an accident, you could be held liable for their medical bills and legal expenses, even though you weren’t at your home.


Homeowners insurance can vary by location. Insurance companies look at the region you live in, the type of neighborhood, and even the street you live on to determine how much you should pay in premiums. Factors that increase home insurance rates include:

  • Whether your primary insurance company provides coverage in that area
  • The local crime rate
  • The home value
  • The replacement costs

While it’s always a good idea to check with your primary insurance company first, it may not provide coverage outside the region where your first home is. Having to go with a different company may eliminate the possibility of bundling policies or enjoying other discounts.

Many people use their second homes as vacation homes, which are often located in unique places like mountains or beaches. These environments may need specific coverage to protect against natural disasters like floods, hurricanes, and earthquakes.

Home Amenities

Some amenities can increase your insurance rates due to liability risks. If you are looking to outfit your second home with luxuries, there are a few things to consider:

  • Pools and hot tubs: These amenities can increase the replacement value of your home as well as increase your liability risk. The increased risk of accidents, like drowning, for example, can increase your premium.
  • Finished basements: Damage to a finished basement from flooding or burst pipes is more likely to result in a claim than an unfinished basement. These claims could raise your insurance premiums down the line.
  • Expensive items: Homeowners insurance can cover luxury items inside the home but only up to a certain amount. You may need to obtain additional insurance if you would like your possessions protected.
  • Wood-burning stove or fireplace: This amenity is more at risk of fires and smoke damage than gas stoves and fireplaces.

Natural Hazard Risk

Depending on where your second home is located, you may be at higher risk for sustaining damage due to a natural disaster. Typically, major disasters like earthquakes and floods are not covered under a standard homeowners policy, and you would have to purchase additional coverage to protect your second home. Depending on the area, you may need to inquire about add-ons to protect against:

  • Flood: This is usually indicated if your property sits within a 100-year flood zone and if it is near a major body of water like a lake or the ocean.
  • Hurricane: Hurricane paths can be unpredictable, but generally, your state or local government will either strongly encourage or require coverage for hurricanes if you are in a high-risk area.
  • Ground Movement: Most people are familiar with earthquakes, but this type of coverage also protects against damage due to sinkholes. Both types of disasters can be devastating to homeowners, and neither is typically included in standard policies. You’ll want to investigate the area where your second home is located to learn about any fault lines or risk factors that may indicate sinkholes to determine if this coverage is necessary.
  • Hail: This is less a regional risk and has more to do with the age and condition of your roof. Hail damage can occur virtually anywhere, and roofs more than 10 years old may be more expensive to insure—or simply won’t be included in a basic policy.

Ultimately, the coverage add-ons you need will depend heavily on where you opt to purchase a second home, and the research you do into local risk factors and weather trends.

Purchase a Second Home Insurance Policy

Since second homes are typically deemed riskier than primary homes, the home insurance premium tends to be more expensive. Consider bundling your home insurance policy with another kind of insurance coverage to keep premiums as low as possible. Some companies will discount your insurance premiums if you choose to bundle. The most common bundling scenario is home and auto insurance; however, depending on your provider, you may be able to bundle more.

Another option is to upgrade the security at the second home. This upgrade can help lower the risk of loss from burglary and accidents. Additionally, some insurance companies may give discounts to customers who install smart home security features since home security typically falls under protective device discounts.

Protect Your Second Home

To further protect your second home, there are additional steps you can take, including:

  • Obtaining additional coverage, including contents coverage which further protects your possessions in your home
  • Asking friends and neighbors to keep an eye on the house
  • Hiring a seasonal caretaker
  • Putting lamps on timers to turn on and off, creating the illusion that someone is home
  • Installing risk-prevention systems, like water leak sensors
  • Buying a home that is part of a homeowner’s association

A second home may be part of your financial goals. However, there is a lot to consider when it comes to protecting your investment. By understanding the insurance considerations and knowing how much coverage is needed, you can make more informed decisions on your insurance policy for your second home.

11 Hazard vs. Homeowners Insurance: What’s the Difference?

By Guylaine Cadorette | Mar 09, 2021

Shopping for a new home is an exciting time for many Floridians, but few know that the home they choose could make or break their home insurance rates.

Whether you’re searching for an already built home or planning to construct one from the ground up, there are some important factors to consider before you purchase your dream home.

Is Hazard Insurance the Same as Homeowners Insurance?

If you are applying for a mortgage or shopping around for homeowners insurance, you may encounter a variety of terms defining the types of insurance you can purchase and what is included in your policy. Hazard insurance is not a separate policy from homeowners insurance. Instead, it is a specific coverage included in most homeowner’s insurance policies.

Hazard insurance provides specific coverage related to the structure of the dwelling. Besides covering hazard insurance, most home insurance policies will provide additional coverage for other types of damages, such as casualty insurance and liability coverage if someone sustains an injury on the property. Typically, homeowners insurance will contain the following coverages:

  • Hazard coverage
  • Dwelling coverage
  • Additional structure coverage
  • Personal property coverage
  • Loss of use coverage
  • Personal liability coverage
  • Medical payments coverage

What Is Hazard Insurance?

Hazard insurance provides coverage specific to the structure of your home. When asking about the types of insurance you need, lenders will often specifically ask for a hazard insurance policy to ensure that if they issue you a loan at minimum, the structure on the property is covered. Because lenders often ask for hazard insurance specifically, the term’s everyday use has become ambiguous with its true definition.

What Does Hazard Insurance Cover?

Hazard Insurance typically provides coverage in two distinct types; named perils and open perils. Named perils will be specific to your policy and ensure coverage. In contrast, open perils are perils covered that are not explicitly named in your policy. Named perils may include:

  • Home fires and fires caused by natural disasters
  • Smoke damage
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Explosions
  • Wind and damage caused by wind storms, such as falling trees
  • Hail
  • Lightning and burn damage caused by lightning
  • Damage from vehicles
  • Damage from aircraft
  • Damage from riots or civil commotions
  • Damage from volcanic eruptions
  • Falling objects
  • Damage from freezing pipes or AC
  • Accidental damage from electrical currents
  • Damage from the weight of snow, ice, or sleet

Open perils typically cover everything except the following:

  • Earth movements, such as damage from earthquakes
  • Ordinance of law and government action
  • Some types of water damage
  • Damages from power failures
  • Damages from neglect of the property
  • War
  • Theft during active construction
  • Intentional loss
  • Mold, fungus, or wet rot
  • Smog, rust, and corrosion
  • Discharge and seepage of pollutants
  • Birds, vermin, rodents, and insects
  • Damage to the property from animals that you own
  • Normal wear and tear of the dwelling

It is vital to review your insurance policies to understand what your personal policy lists and provides coverage for. Every policy may be unique and may not cover the same types of damage as previous policies you may have had.

Hazard Insurance Claim Reimbursement

If damage occurs to the dwelling covered by hazard insurance, you will be required to first pay the amount defined by your deductible, and the insurer will cover the remaining amount. Your reimbursement will depend on the reimbursement provisions in your policy, typically boiling down to one of the two following:

  • Actual cash value. Actual cash value is typically the least expensive policy to purchase and often offers the smallest amount of reimbursement for damages. Actual cash value provides reimbursement for what your property was worth—including any wear or tear and depreciation at the time it was damaged or destroyed.
  • Replacement cost value. Replacement cost value typically comes at a higher expense but provides reimbursement for the property—regardless of depreciated value. This means that your coverage replaces the damaged or stolen property at its full cost for a brand new item—regardless of wear, tear, and depreciation.

Is Hazard Insurance Required?

Homeowners’ policies and those that include hazard insurance are generally not a legal requirement. However, if you are applying for a mortgage or purchasing your home through a loan, your lender may require you to have a homeowners insurance policy that includes hazard insurance. This lender requirement ensures the lender that if something happens to the dwelling on the property, the asset is covered and financially protected. Some lenders may require you to pay a year’s worth of premiums on the insurance policy in advance of signing a home loan.

While obtaining homeowners insurance and subsequently hazard insurance may not be a legal requirement, it is best to get as much coverage as you can to ensure that your property and valuables are protected in the event of theft, vandalism, accidental damage, or damage caused by unforeseen events such as the weather.

If you own a property that you wish to use as a second home, you may need to consider homeowners insurance for second homes and vacation properties that include hazard insurance or a landlord insurance policy. Choosing between these types of policies will depend on your personal situation and individual needs.

How Much Is Hazard Insurance?

The cost of a homeowners insurance policy that includes hazard insurance will depend upon a few factors that include:

  • The value of the property and dwelling
  • What is included in the policy
  • The policy limit
  • The deductible amount
  • If you choose reimbursement as actual cash value or replacement cost value

Considerations for selecting your insurance will depend on your personal budget and how much you can afford, as well as the type of coverage you decide is necessary to keep your property, dwelling, and personal belongings covered for reimbursement.

For example, you may choose to pay a smaller premium for an insurance policy that does not provide extensive coverage and only offers actual cash value. In the event of damage, your property may not be covered, or you may end up paying more to replace your damaged items.

If you choose a policy with more extensive coverage that includes replacement costs, you may rest assured knowing that your assets are protected; and that you will receive full reimbursement to replace your damaged items or property