Did you know that a hurricane or tropical storm that is not even forecasted to impact Florida could stop your closing dead in its tracks? Yup! Don’t let your closings get unnecessarily delayed. Make sure you are up to speed on the “no-bind” box that encompasses 16,000 square miles around Florida and how it could impact your closings!
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Every year from June one St through November 30 th, our attention turns towards the warm waters off our Coast for the development of tropical depressions, tropical storms, and Hurricanes. And that’s for good reason. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Noah tropical cyclones have cost the United States $1.75 trillion since 1989. Impacts from landfalling storms can disrupt lies for weeks, months, and years.
One of the hardest-hit industries as it relates to tropical cyclones is the insurance industry. Take, for example, Hurricane Michael, which may landfall as a category five storm in 2018. When Michael made landfall and the Florida Panhandle, it has sustained winds of 160 miles per hour, caused over $25-billion in property damage, and claimed the lives of over 70 people.
The insurance industry had to come up with a way to help mitigate their loss from property owners who were waiting until the storm had formed and it was on the way to get their insurance. Their solution was the no-bind box covering an estimated 16,000 square miles around Florida.
The no-bind box is something that every real estate agent and broker should be familiar with as it has the potential to delay and derail closings whenever a tropical storm or hurricane watch or warning is issued within the no-bind box indicated by the red line on the map in the video above, the state Citizen’s Property Insurance Corporation will not accept applications for new coverage or any endorsements for increased coverage, regardless of the effective date. Most private insurance companies will also follow the same policy, however, there are some that make exceptions with homeowners insurance being required for the vast majority of financed real estate closings.
It is important that real estate agents keep a watchful eye on the weather during hurricane season. If it looks as if there may be tropical development within 36 to 72 hours anywhere within the no-bind box, agents should strongly encourage buyers to bind their policies before the issuance of any watches or warnings. Be sure to keep in constant contact with the lender, the buyer, and the buyer’s insurance company so that you’re aware of any specific deadlines for your closing.