Citizens backs off pricey replacement costs

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Jan. 23, 2012 – An issue discussed at the recent Florida Realtors Mid-Winter Meetings appears resolved, at least for now. Citizen’s Property Insurance Corp. – the state-owned insurer of last resort – relied on a single vendor, 360Value, to estimate a building’s replacement costs that, in turn, impact the amount of property insurance an owner had to buy.

A number of Realtors and homeowners, however, felt that 360Value overestimated replacement costs, forcing owners to overpay for insurance. Consequently – and in response to criticism from Florida Realtors, homeowners, the media and others – Citizens says it will now consider other sources when calculating replacement cost, including other software firms, appraisers, contractors and more.

“Florida Realtors has followed Citizens’ actions closely, and we discussed replacement costs at the recent Mid-Winter Business Meetings,” says Florida Realtors Senior Vice President of Public Policy John Sebree. “This issue is important to Realtors, homeowners and buyers, and we’re pleased with Citizens’ decision to expand replacement cost appraisals.”

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