Monday, October 17, 2022 – For the better part of a decade, New Orleans residents have debated the need for an insurance program that is affordable and reliable. Now is the time to act!
Our failure to prioritize housing in this state makes all of our other issues worse, so we’re urging community members and supporters of affordable housing to contact the insurance commissioner. We need to work together to push this issue forward. An affordable insurance plan is necessary to ensure that this crucial resource is available for all New Orleanians in need.
What you can do to address the problems that are driving up your insurance rates:
- The Louisiana State Legislature passed a law in 2022 that provides funds for the Louisiana Fortify Homes Program, with revenues generated by the Louisiana Department of Insurance, not to exceed $10,000,000 in any fiscal year, beginning January 2023. The program will provide up to $10K grants to homeowners with homestead exemptions for the purposes of fortifying roofs. This law provides that the commissioner of insurance may make financial grants to retrofit insurable property with a homestead exemption to resist loss and meet or exceed the fortified home standards of the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety. Funds not expended in the fiscal year for which appropriated shall remain in the fund for distribution in subsequent fiscal years. Call your legislator!
- On last Monday, October 10th, 2022, the Louisiana Department of Insurance (LDI) approved a 63% rate increase on Louisiana Citizens’ residential property insurance policies beginning January 1, 2023. The rate increase will supposedly not affect citizens’ current policyholders until they renew their policy after that date. Call your legislator!
As an advocate for affordable housing, we encourage you to contact your local legislators by calling or emailing using the link here Legislators on the Insurance Committee.
- “An increase of 63% is untenable because it will surely make insurance ridiculously expensive for many homeowners. Rates for a standard policy will jump from $848 to $3366 in the next year. That’s more than four times as much!”
- “Due to increased property taxes and insurance premiums, homeowners are finding it difficult to make ends meet. A win-win situation would look to be expanding access to more affordable small-scale housing options for renters while also stabilizing long-time homeowners through greater income.”
- “Communities and the economy as a whole depend on stable, decent-quality, affordable housing. People are forced to spend more of their income on housing and are less likely to use it on local businesses and other necessities that support a thriving local economy and the creation of jobs. This is because there is a lack of an easily accessible supply of high-quality, secure homes to rent or buy.”
- “The FORTIFIED Homes program should be a collaboration between the National Institute of Building Sciences and the insurance industry to assist homeowners in evaluating and improving their home’s resilience against wind and water hazards, thereby reducing the impact of future natural disasters.”