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Contributor

I have had USAA as my Homeowner's insurance for over 25 years, 15 in Florida.  Now it appears they do not want my insurance business.  I thought USAA supports the military, both past and present, but they what they are doing with their homeowner's insurance in Florida shows they have abandoned the military member.  The rates for their insurance is over 3 times higher than other companies.  While their customer service is better than average, in most cases, they are not the caring, military oriented organization they claim in their advertising.  They appear to want out of the homeowner's insurance market in Florida, so they are abusing loyal members.  I have called and talked to them, but was basically told there is nothing which could be done.  Slowly, USAA is losing all of my business, that's a shame, they used to support the service member, I guess that is all in the past.

12 REPLIES

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SBear, you are not alone in this.  USAA used to be a really great company---- in the past.  I am a 23 year member and I have come to the end of my rope with USAA's excuses and inaction to improve.  USAA won't even give me a quote for my Florida home.  I have honestly given them the benefit of doubt and spent hours on the phone looking for options only to be turned down time and time again.  It is not just the homeowner's insurance, I have had my share of difficulties with Auto and banking as well.  Recently, State Farm has been very helpful to me and my family's needs and Security First Florida Insurance has a competitive home policy that I am happy with.  Good luck to you, I hope you are able to find what you need.

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This has been happening for years.  USAA has basically been forced out of the Florida market due to cost because of changes in the law (both state and federal) and the higher risk.  An older article, but it has some interesting information:

 

"According to USAA, over the past 10 years, the company has paid approximately $220 million more in Florida homeowner insurance losses and expenses than it has collected in premiums. Florida property policyholders account for 49 percent of USAA’s exposure to natural disaster risk, yet make up only 9 percent of policyholders, who pay 12 percent of USAA’s property insurance premiums."

 

Unfortunately, you will probably need to find insurance with an agency that is better positioned to assume the higher risk.

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First, nobody "forced" USAA out of Florida. USAA chose to leave and abandon long, longtime customers. No gun was held to the heads of USAA to get out of town. Second, if they had a bad ten years, what about the previous forty years? Probably made a mint or they would not have continued the business. What is not known is the kind of accounting practices used to make the Florida decision. Does USAA use general ledger accounting practices? Can they can make the horrendous claims in California look profitable if they wish? Bottom line: Don't attempt to read or to believe the numbers from an insurance company until it is known how the numbers made it to the spreadsheet. The state watchdogs are usually in the pocket of the industry so there is no consumer relief there. I find it ludicrous to believe USAA's actuaries and CEO's waited year after year, for ten years. just out of the goodness of their heart to continue in Florida before they decided to pull the plug. Some of us out here are not that naive nor that ignorant.
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Insurance Journal April 13, 2007 - the paragraph preceding the one shown preceding: “We regret that we have been forced into this position, but recent legislative and regulatory actions in Florida leave no other option,” said USAA Chairman and CEO Bob Davis. “We find ourselves in an untenable insurance market, where we are not allowed to charge the appropriate amount for the risk the association bears on behalf of our Florida members. If we do not take immediate action to limit our exposure to loss, we risk jeopardizing the viability of our entire association, and the financial security of all those we serve – the men and women of the U.S. military and their families.” I was living in Florida 2003-2008 and I do recall reading about some controversy over changes in the laws, too long ago to remember enough specifics. Insurance law is written and enforced by state governments, and does vary quite a bit from one state to another. In the 1970s most life insurance companies established separate subsidiaries to write business in New York State because of difficulties that arose from the state code. That was years ago and I can not say whether that is still the case there. Long term it is prudent to expect rough seas in coastal areas, literally rough and high. Although the impact has been creeping up on us slowly (in the time scale of humans) Global Warming is well underway and unstoppable. There are many articles from many different sources that describe that evolving tragedy with maps that show regions that will be flooded at some point. If you think flood insurance is difficult now just wait until the floods are happening with only higher water in sight. Consider the political environment in Florida. As I recall recent news reports the legislature has forbidden government operations to mention Global Warming. No help from Washington D.C. is likely, so many senior people there profess they are not scientists when asked about it. Seriously, how much longer would YOU be willing to insure coastal properties against flood and storm damage? Disclosure: I have been a member since 1969, I am a retired consulting actuary with primary practice area employee benefits and compensation with little activity in insurance.
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SBear,

 

I am so sorry for your feeling of frustration. I would like to get a specialist in contact with you, to see if there is anything else we may be able to help you with. I thank you for your service, and membership. Someone will be in contact with you soon. Thanks!

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Too late, left.  I have been trying to talk with USAA for 3 years, no satisfaction.  Have pretty much the same homeowner's coverage at over $600.00 per month less.  With all the expanding USAA has been doing, I find it hard to believe they have to be 3 to 5 times higher in cost than other smaller companies.  So, have they decided to get out ot the New Jersey and New York markets also with the losses they have suffered there?

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Based on some other complaints, they are not writing new policy (with the exception of some active duty members on orders) in high risk coastal areas.  

 

I definitely don't want them to pass the cost on to me, and from what I understand, those in the high risk that are currently covered are complaining because of increase cost.   USAA limited insurance pool, makes it more difficult to spread that risk than other larger insurers with no membership restrictions.

 

I'm sure if there was a way they could do it, they would.   Until then, you'll just have to find the insurance somewhere else.

 

If you read the report to members, you'll note that the insurance side of USAA isn't the big money maker.

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I am a 25+ year USAA member -  same issue as I just moved to florida to find out that they dont offer Homeowners.  I am disappointed in USAA as well.  Long time customers and those that meet the profile of the "exlusive group" should have some privilages.  It is a dissappointement that you can not figure this out....

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I want USAA to be profitable and make decisions for long term.   Not serving Florida in home insurance might be a very smart business reason that benefits the rest of the members.