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Friday, February 6, 2015

Flood Flood Flood - URGENT!!! More Insurance Changes On the Way!! Here's What YOU Need To Do:

April 1 is fast approaching!  and no, it's not an April Fool's joke - the Flood Insurance rules are changing again!  If you want a good summary, click HERE, but if you would like just the highlights - here you go!

TO DO:    You MUST verify your Primary Residence, or you will be changed to non-primary status.  To verify your primary residence, you must submit documentation such as a copy of your Driver's License two months ahead of your renewal.  Non-primary residences will be surcharged $250.


TO DO:    Check into higher deductibles to reduce the cost of insurance coverage.  A $10,000 option will now be available - but remember that it applies to EACH coverage (structure and contents), so if you choose the highest deductibles available, you will have to pay $10,000 deductible for the structure AND $10,000 deductible for the contents.


TO DO:     Don't let your policy lapse.  Rewrites may be more costly to you.


TO DO:      Buy Flood Insurance NOW if you do not have it yet.  It's your last chance, if you do not have flood insurance, and your zone was re-mapped in 2008 or more recently, to purchase insurance at a reduced rate.  Make your purchase BEFORE April 1, 2016.




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You may note an increase in the Total Amount Due on your flood policy renewal.

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is in the process of implementing Congressionally-mandated reforms required by the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 (HFIAA), that repeals certain sections of the Biggert Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012. As a result beginning on April 1, 2015 Flood Insurance Rates, Surcharges and Fees will affect the total amount all policyholders pay for a flood insurance policy. 











Changes taking place in April include "Rate Increases" for most policies, the implementation of an "Annual Surcharge" on all new and renewed policies, an increase in the "Policy Fee" and an increase in "Reserve Fund Assessment".



  1. NFIP annual policy rate increases, with some exceptions*, will be between 5% and 15% with individual policy premiums to be capped at 18% before applying the Annual Surcharge and Federal Policy Fee; which may increase the Total Amount Due on your flood policy, even if your rates went down.

  2. The NFIP Reserve Fund is now being applied to Preferred Risk Policies at 10% and has been increased to 15% on all other policies. (The Reserve Fund is calculated into the 18% HFIAA annual per policy premium cap.)

  3. Federal Policy fees are increased slightly this year. (The Policy Fee is not included in the calculation of the 18% HFIAA annual per policy premium increase cap.)

  4. The new HFIAA Surcharge is federally mandated and has been newly initiated at $250 for all policies unless it is your verified primary residence*. Primary residences verified through your agent are eligible for a $25 HFIAA Surcharge. (The surcharge is not included in calculation of the 18% HFIAA annual per policy premium cap.) 



There is also an additional deductible option being introduced that may lower the premium you pay.


  1. A new deductible of $10,000 for both building and contents is now available for 1-4 residential policyholders. The deductible is selected separately to reduce claim payments for both building and contents separately.  If flood insurance was required by your lender, please check if they will accept the higher deductible.  If you are interested in this higher deductible, be aware that high deductible amounts reduce the amount of any claim payment at time of loss.








 


In summary, NFIP Flood Reform Implementation continues:


  • April 1, 2015 annual premium increases move the NFIP one step closer to full risk rates

    • Generally, highest increases on high risk policies, non-primary with subsidized rates (No EC applied)

    • Encourage subsidized policyholders to get EC to determine actual risk

  • Primary residences see less impact-

    • Complete the Percentage of residency transaction prior to 60 days before renewal billing is mailed to avoid unnecessary sticker shock.

  • Assessment, Fees and Surcharges are applied and are increasing

    • Reserve Fund  (included in 18% premium cap)

    • Federal Policy Fees (not included in premium cap)

    • New HFIAA Surcharges   (not subject to premium cap)

  • Prepare for policyholder questions

    • Get staff up to date on steps to retain policies.

    • Review policies for primary residence, raise deductible, lower coverage but don't lapse.



To help you swim through all of the Flood Insurance Changes, contact your Trusted Choice Agent!
We are your LOCAL Trusted Choice Advisors, SouthGroup-Gulf Coast http://www.southgroupgulfcoast.com ,  SALES AND SERVICE AGENTS: Angelyn Treutel Zeringue, Tammy Garfield, Tammy Hogue, Brittany Jones, Denise Russell, Melissa Moran, Alex Treutel, Anne Gillam, Ashlie Moody, Mark Strickland, and Whitney Zimmerman at SouthGroup Gulf Coast. You can reach us by snail-mail or in person: 412 Hwy 90, Suite 6, Bay St Louis MS 39520, email: info@southgropugulfcoast.com , phone: 228-466-4498 fax:888-415-8922,  FaceBook www.facebook.com/southgroup.gulfcoast, or Twitter www.twitter.com/atreutel !

We have 3 Gulf Coast locations to serve you - 2505 Pass Road - Biloxi, 5400 Indian Hill-Diamondhead, and 412 Hwy 90 Suite 6-Bay Saint Louis, MS. We write coverage in 40 different states and can assist you with Mississippi insurance, Louisiana insurance, and Alabama insurance and many other states.

Insurance is stressful, but we make saving easy.  We help you save money on insurance!

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