SilverBlog

Wisdom from our industry experts and our SilverLink magazine.

 
 

Author: Chuck Eckert

Owning and renting out real estate can be a lucrative business, but certain property management issues can spell trouble. Whether you own a single unit or several housing communities, you face a long list of exposures.

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Life can change in an instant. Residents, business owners, ranchers and farmers across Nebraska, Iowa and surrounding states are currently coping with this reality. Historic flooding has devastated our region, sweeping away homes, buildings, roads and pastures. The destruction is unlike anything we’ve seen and it has directly affected our family, friends, clients and colleagues. As I write this, my own home is sitting in water up to its roofline – and there’s nothing I can do but watch and wait.

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While 2017 was mostly a buyers’ market for commercial property insurance, rates are currently on the rise. From hospitality and storage to development and habitational, the commercial real estate insurance market is firming up. Carriers are responding to natural disasters, including hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and Florence, as well as recent California wildfires. Events like these have significantly affected the insurance industry, with global insured losses totaling well over $100 billion in 2017 alone.

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When running a business, it can be difficult to keep tabs on your commercial property value because your attention is often pulled in other directions. Losing focus on this number, however, can spell big trouble for your commercial property insurance policy. If you experience a loss and file a claim, your insured property value will be the number that either gets you back to business or forces you to shut your doors – so you better be sure that number is right!

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Senior care risk management is becoming increasingly complex. Our growing elderly population has created a greater demand for in-home care and assisted living facilities. As this demographic grows and becomes more diverse, so do the risks and challenges facing senior care providers. To remain successful, care providers must assess current and emerging trends, and understand the challenges that insurance companies must solve in this evolving industry.

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The first half of 2017 was marked by significant loss – not only in dollars, but, more tragically, lives as well. Three tornado outbreaks ripped through various parts of the country, resulting in over $3 billion of damage. Parts of California experienced severe flooding after a massive rainfall that caused a $1 billion loss. Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria triggered one of the most destructive hurricane seasons in history. Needless to say, 2017 has not been good to the insurance industry from a global perspective. The U.S. property and casualty industry has recorded a net underwriting loss of $5.1 billion for the first six months of 2017, compared to only $2 billion for the same period in 2016.¹

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Try to imagine that you’re stranded in the ocean, struggling to keep your head above water. Someone finally throws you a life preserver, but you find out it’s full of holes and isn’t going to keep you afloat. It’s a devastating feeling to be thrown a lifeline, only to discover it isn’t strong enough to provide the help you need. This could be the unfortunate reality for many people who count on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for financial protection in the event of a flood.

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You don’t have to watch the news for long to know that gun violence is a serious problem in the United States. What many people aren’t aware of is that nearly half of all active shooter events occur in a place of business. This alarming statistic should serve as a wake-up call for business owners. Does your business have terrorism insurance in the event of workplace violence?

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Terrorism looks quite different than it did 15 or 20 years ago. In the 1990s and 2000s, terrorist acts were typically carried out by large groups against high-profile targets. However, recent attacks have mostly been carried out by small cells or lone attackers seeking maximum casualties in crowded venues. This shift in terrorism trends has insurers and business owners evaluating new risks as attackers go after “soft targets” (people who are relatively unprotected or vulnerable) in events that result in significant loss of life and business interruption, but minimal property damage. There are a number of basic questions business owners should ask to begin reassessing their terrorism risk management programs and determine if new or altered coverage is needed.

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