While the holiday season usually brings good tidings and cheer, condominium associations and residents insured by Citizens Property Insurance Corporation can expect coal in their stockings this year. Once again, the state’s largest insurer plans to increase rates to Florida condominium residents between 19 and 20.6 percent on average leaving many dismayed, especially since it has been over 5 years since the last major hurricane.

Beginning in March for new policies and April for renewals, rates for all of the commercial residential multi-peril risks will increase by 19 percent on average. For those associations and residents in higher risk areas like Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, Indian River, and St. Lucie counties, however, an average increase of 20.6 percent is planned. This will create a huge influx of premiums to the state-run insurance carrier, especially since the high risk counties alone account for more than $71 million in premiums.

If you or your association see a rate increase, I suggest you contact your state representative or senator. With re-elections looming, your input may have more of an impact than ever before.