Friday, February 10, 2006

With "Good Hands" like these who needs enemies?

From the Sun-Sentinel today - link .
"Only months after declaring that Allstate Floridian Insurance Co.'s proposed rate increase could be denied, state regulators have reversed course and granted the company permission to raise homeowner premiums 20 to 30 percent in Broward and Palm Beach counties."

I found this next part especially interesting..........

"Now the company has the state's blessing to collect the additional premium. If regulators had not reached an agreement with Allstate Floridian and an arbitration panel agreed increased rates weren't justified, Allstate Floridian would have been forced to return the additional money they collected. An arbitration hearing had been scheduled for mid-January but was canceled because both sides "felt that enough progress was being made, that there was a potential to reach an agreement" on Allstate's request, said company spokesman Ryan Priest. "

"The company started charging higher rates to its 663,000 customers Oct. 3. Allstate Floridian is the third largest insurer in Florida; its highest concentration of policies is in Broward County and its third largest is in Palm Beach County.The average statewide increase is 16.3 percent for Allstate Floridian Insurance customers, and 24.4 percent for the company's Allstate Floridian Indemnity subsidiary."

"The company disclosed the increase in a conference call with investors Jan. 31. State officials had not announced the increase was approved but typically don't make such announcements. They(the state of Fl) had announced in October that they intended to deny Allstate Floridian's higher rates, unless the company provided more information."

That upset state Sen. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton, who has advocated returning the state system to an elected insurance commissioner.

"Apparently this is how an appointed insurance commissioner does business," Klein said in written statement. "Disapprove a rate increase with great fanfare in a very public way, wait until the public isn't looking and then grant an increase without disclosing it."

Wow, let's all hurry and buy a house. Prices have doubled, taxes have doubled, insurance has doubled. This year those I/O's and ARMS are going to reset, so the payments will double. But, after all, it's going to only appreciate in value so you'd be crazy not to.


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