Florida’s real estate industry worries on soaring insurance costs
Tuesday, 19 September 2006
The crisis on property insurance threatens Florida’s commercial real estate market and its economy.  Soaring insurance prices are the top issue now.  The cost of insurance has gone from a minor operating expense to the largest one.  The pressure on property owners would eventually translate into the broader economy and into higher consumer prices. 

"If it continues on the trend it is on now, it could have a substantial impact," said Dick Donnellean, chief executive officer of Apartment Realty Advisors in Boca Raton.

William Stander, assistant vice president of the Property and Casualty Insurers Association of America, said insurance was simply taking the blame for a cooling real estate market.

"It's no secret insurance rates are going up," he said. "They're going up because the cost of paying insurance claims is going up. We've paid out $40 billion in the last two years."

The survey showed a majority of industry executives also expect a condominium slowdown, both in the number of apartment-to-condo conversions and in prices. Fully 69 percent of those polled expect condo prices to go up at a rate lower than inflation or to decline.


Edwina Baniqued