Add First Home Insurance Co. to the roster of property insurers seeking a hefty rate hike this year.
If First Home has its way, its average homeowners' premium will jump 39.3 percent.
The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation will consider the request in a hearing at 1 p.m. Tuesday in Tallahassee. Those unable to attend have until Dec. 14 to forward their comments and concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org; The subject line of the e-mail should read "First Home."
Despite a lack of hurricane damage claims, Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty has been besieged by insurers seeking double-digit rate hikes this year. Insurers say they need more money to pay for a surge in sinkhole claims and other non-hurricane cases, among other reasons.
During the first eight months of 2010, McCarty's office approved 45 property insurance rate increases with the average hike at nearly 13 percent, based on a St. Petersburg Times review of "all-peril" policies, the most common type of homeowners policy.
First Home has 17,472 policies statewide, including about 3,000 in the Tampa Bay area.