First of all, don’t panic! There are options available for you so call your agent and see what those options are. We are an independent agency and can re-shop the market for you to find the proper coverage at a fair value.
Check to see (or ask your agent) if your homeowner’s policy contains a guaranteed renewal provision. Most companies don’t contain this provision. We do have some policies with The Hartford AARP Program that are grandfathered into a lifetime continuation program.
Check with your agent to see if there are steps you can take to change the company’s decision. It’s a long shot but worth a try.
Inform your agent about the non-renewal right away and don’t wait until the last minute! If your agent is worth his salt, he or she will already know about the non-renewal and already be working on a solution for you.
Make sure that you are not underinsured. There are agents out there that have no problem cutting coverage in order to “win” the business. This is a very dangerous ploy that puts you at risk. Look at Coverage A on your current policy and compare it to Coverage A on the proposed new policy. If this is lower, try not to let the agent discount the importance of this as much of the other coverage on a home policy is a percentage of the Coverage A amount (Coverage A is the amount deemed necessary to completely rebuild your home and in the aftermath of wildfires, the costs of labor and materials often skyrocket because both become high in demand).
This one seems like a no-brainer but don’t be afraid to ask your agent questions! The agent is supposed to be the authority and should be able to go over each of the coverage options with you including telling you which coverage is better or less than what you had on your prior policy.
If no other options are available in the voluntary market, ask your agent about the California Fair Plan and a corresponding wrap-around policy called a Difference in Conditions policy. The Fair Plan is California’s program of last resort so you always have a protection option available to you.
As an independent insurance agency, Ken May Insurance Services has access to many of the top property insurance companies in California. We can explore the market and come up with proper solutions for you. We would rather not place you into the California Fair Plan and a corresponding Difference in Conditions policy if we can avoid it because as the program of last resort, it can be a bit pricey but, if necessary, we have that option. But we will do our best to create a solution that properly covers your home while providing value.