One question I get a lot is “how do I pick a home that will have a good insurance rate?” In Florida this is generally an easy thing to figure out. First of all, newer homes, especially those built after 2000 in Florida are built to a minimum higher standard than older homes. This was when codes changed to emphasize the importance of protection from hurricanes. Second, insurance companies always love a roof that is in good shape. If it’s an older but still solid roof, call out a roofer to do an inspection and make some general repairs if they’re needed. I work with several providers who will insure older roofs as long as they’re in good shape. Examples of simple roof upkeep include replacing missing and/or worn-out shingles, and making sure no trees or other vegetation stand a chance at impacting the home. Third, and this one comes up a lot in this blog- hurricane shutters or impact glass. Those are what will always get you the largest discounts on your homeowner’s policy in Florida. Finally, it is important to know your flood zone, viewing flood maps and being aware of any potential risk or required flood coverage is a must when buying any new home. The fact is, some homes will simply be required to have a flood policy by a lender, or just necessity. Florida has some truly amazing places to live, and some of those, due to the natural beauty and terrain that surrounds it, will need additional flood insurance. Flood insurance is not automatically included on any homeowner’s policy, it will usually need to be purchased completely separate. Do not let purchasing a flood policy scare you away though, in fact most homes in the state that need it get great rates on that protection. Please call me today regarding any home you are interested in purchasing, and I will give my own personal assessment of its protections, and inform you of your flood rating.