Levitt-Fuirst’s Personal Insurance Annual Update


Happy New Year!  
To kick off 2024, here is a quick review concerning some important aspects of your personal insurance policies.  

ANY CHANGES TO YOUR PERSONAL INSURANCE? Remember to let us know if you have:
* Transferred any of your properties into Trusts or LLCs
* Acquired new properties
* Acquired new cars, boats, motorcycles, or ATVs
* Purchased, sold or gifted any fine arts, jewelry, or collectibles
* Installed a new alarm monitoring device (e.g. water leak detector)
* Installed a new permanent generator
* Added any drivers to your household, or had any household drivers move out
* Taken a defensive driving course  
* Purchased an electric bike
* Any expectation of using any of your properties as a short-term rental or AirBnB

VACATION HOMES With the increased use of AirBnB type services, insurance companies are concerned about the rental of secondary homes to multiple different short-term tenants. If you are offering a secondary home for short-term rentals, contact us about a special insurance program for this type of exposure.  

NEW PRODUCTS Over the last few years some insurance companies have added optional coverages. Click on any of the links to learn more:  
* Personal Cyber Liability
* Equipment Breakdown Family Protection  

OPTIONAL COVERAGES Click on these links if you want to learn more about these optional coverages:  
* Earthquake / Flood
* Home Employee / Personal Directors & Officers
* Mold
* Valuable Items  


Last January we alerted you that most insurance companies were projected to raise rates 20-30% in 2023.    These increases were triggered by higher frequency and severity of weather events across the country, combined with the increased costs to repair homes and cars.   

For 2024, unfortunately, we anticipate continuation of the following unwelcomed trends:
1.    Premium Increases – We expect premium increases will continue, due to ongoing (albeit reduced) inflation, and severe weather, combined with ongoing increased reinsurance premium costs (i.e. premiums insurance companies pay reinsurers to layoff risk).  We expect premium increases will moderate, but still may exceed 10% (especially for accounts that did not incur a major increase in 2023).
2.    More Stringent Underwriting – Carriers performing appraisal inspections may require roof, siding, and other repairs, in addition to applying mandatory Dwelling Limit increases, in line with appraisal replacement cost estimates.
3.    Water Flow Alarm Requirements – Our past several annual letters have informed of new technology (see below) that helps prevent catastrophic water damage in your home due to a water leak or pipe break.  More insurance companies now require installation of these devices, especially after a water claim.
4.    Territorial restrictions – The number of carriers willing to write insurance for high catastrophic exposure areas continues to decline.  As insurance crises in Florida and California continue, other coastal areas including Long Island, areas bordering the Long Island Sound, the mid-Atlantic coast, and western wildfire prone areas are increasingly challenging to insure.


As announced last year, we no longer provide reminders in the event of past due payments. Your insurance carrier sends you an invoice – if the invoice is not paid by the due date, the carrier sends you a policy cancellation warning. If you are concerned that you might miss these two separate mailings, we recommend you sign up for automatic electronic payments from your bank account or credit card. 
If your insurance is cancelled for non-payment, we will endeavor to contact you to make sure you are aware, and then we can attempt to get your policy reinstated if desired (but, cancelled insurance can lead to uncovered claims and/or premium increases, so make sure to make timely premium payments). Recurring cancellations may lead to an inability to reinstate coverage.