The Case for Florida: Is it Worth it to Write Business in the Sunshine State?

By Pathpoint



Lightning rarely strikes the same place twice...unless you're in Florida. With a booming population - 674,740 people moved to the state in the last four years - the demand for property insurance is higher than ever. But here's the catch: Florida's challenging property market poses a significant hurdle. The perfect storm - no pun intended - of physical and economic factors is leaving millions of Floridians with limited options and the state on the brink of an insurance disaster. Buckle up as we delve into how Florida ended up in this situation and determine if the potential business is worth it, and how you can weather the storm to increase your book.

Natural Disasters: Florida's Battle with Mother Nature

Florida has become a natural disaster hub, with floods, wildfires, tornadoes, and tropical storms. Climate change and rising sea temperatures have intensified these storms, leading insurers to tighten coverage or increase premiums for storm damage claims. Some insurers have even stopped insuring Florida properties altogether. In the past year, seven insurers went bankrupt, and fifteen stopped accepting new business in Florida, with Farmers being the latest casualty (WUSF, 2023).

Given these circumstances, experienced agents rely on Citizen's Insurance, the state's designated last resort. Citizens offers affordable coverage and insures high-risk properties. However, it's important to note that this solution has drawbacks. Citizens is meant for worst-case scenarios, not the norm. Therefore, when agents skip right to Citizens instead of trying other options first, they are sent back to square one, often wasting time shopping multiple markets with expensive premiums.

Facing Rising Costs: Staying Afloat

Insurance is cyclical, so let's circle back to the insurers who haven't fled Florida and discuss their insurance policy - reinsurance. As you may know, insurers use reinsurance to protect themselves and cover costs associated with claims and litigation. But here's the thing: in Florida, these admitted carriers are struggling to find reinsurance markets or facing higher rates themselves. We're talking about increases ranging from 30% to 40% across the board! And guess what? The operational costs for insurers are going up, which means higher premiums for the insureds. Sometimes, these premiums are skyrocketing, up to 300%! Now landlords are feeling the pinch too. They're increasing rents to pay for these sky-high premiums. And let us tell you, this has caused tenant rent to double or even triple. And to make matters worse, there's no inventory. So, let's get hypothetical. You have a small studio, a 600-square-foot apartment, going for a steep $2,000 price tag. Will you pay for that? Maybe in Aruba, but many renters are saying no thanks, and that's leaving vacant properties on the market. It's a mess. No matter how you shake it, the economic aftermath is raining down on all parties involved.

Higher Rates & Litigation: A Legal Thunderstorm

When finances are tight, it's no surprise that people can become agitated. Insurance costs have skyrocketed in today's litigious environment, particularly in Florida. In 2022, a staggering 79% of all U.S. homeowners' lawsuits originated from Florida, despite it representing only 9% of the country's claims (Bankrate, 2022). Fraudulent claims further exacerbate the situation, with roofing contractors pressuring property owners to sign away their rights (assignment of benefits) based on false property statements. When adjusters uncover the truth, insurers face costly litigation or false claim payouts. Despite attempts at legislation, Floridians continue to feel the repercussions. The increasing number of claims and defense costs drive up policy premiums, affecting the average insured individual. Additionally, inflation compounds the problem by driving up repair costs and premiums due to the scarcity of raw materials like wood. Insurers struggle to accurately price policies, resulting in non-renewals and market withdrawals, similar to the current state of affairs in Florida.

Enter Pathpoint: A Silver Living for Agents

Wondering if property writing in Florida is worth it? Rest assured; it definitely is! Resourceful agents turn to Excess and Surplus (E&S) when markets are slim. E&S offers advantages like more markets and coverage options, but there are a few drawbacks. The biggest challenge used to be the time-consuming and effort-intensive nature of the process. That changed with Pathpoint. Pathpoint has revolutionized E&S writing, making it fast and efficient. Instead of dealing with multiple ACORDs, simply upload your application in the portal and receive multiple quotes within minutes. While your competition spends its week searching for markets and dealing with paperwork, you can quote, bind, collect payments, and obtain signatures in under two hours. And it gets better. This year, Pathpoint partnered with Vave, a cutting-edge MGA specializing in commercial property solutions, to bridge the gap in property coverage. This strategic alliance aims to meet the growing demand for coverage in coastal areas, including Florida. Add another tool to your toolbox with a reliable A-rated carrier, comprehensive property coverages, competitive premiums, and access to the fastest and most efficient quoting tool in the industry. Leverage Pathpoint’s services to write vacant to occupied commercial property across Florida and the United States.

In conclusion: Embrace the Wave

Despite the challenges posed by nature or economics, conducting business in Florida presents an immense opportunity that cannot be ignored. With the knowledge of an efficient method to swiftly obtain quotes, the struggle of writing property accounts in Florida becomes a thing of the past. So, the next time you receive an inquiry for a Florida property, remember that Pathpoint is ready to support you in navigating the ever-changing landscape.


  • Deventer, C. (2023, August 4). Can lawmakers save the collapsing Florida home insurance market? Banrate.
  • Kelley, E. (2023, July 13). Brace yourself Floridians, the promised insurance relief isn't expected soon and could get worse. WUSF.