“Our operational and financial preparedness have enabled Centauri to weather Ian, providing its insureds with the best possible service in claims and a host of related matters in the more than 2,000 homeowners and commercial claims received to date – 90% in Florida, the balance in South Carolina,” Sahara said.
Sahara said that Centauri was responding to Ian-related claims 24/7 from its Omaha service center without any outsourced surge resources. The company answered more than 4,000 calls initially received with an average wait time of only 10 seconds, he said. Centauri has completed approximately 80% of claims inspections to date, all within an average of 5.5 days of taking the claim.
“We have seen the strains that disasters like Hurricane Ian can cause, and we did our utmost to prepare, especially in our financial claims-paying ability – often lacking in this market, and causing some volatility and availability problems,” Sahara said. “While there needs to be long-term legislative reforms affecting the runaway claims environment in Florida, all insurers need to do their part in this market if we are to be committed to it under all circumstances.
“The number of insolvencies and the precarious financial state of so many insurers is not entirely attributable to an over-licensed bar trail – the responsibility is shared. Floriday’s citizens were brave and resilient, and they deserve our loyalty.”
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Rick Espino, CEO of Centauri, said that Applied Underwriters’ policy of dedicated resources, as opposed to outsourcing, enabled Centauri’s effectiveness in rapidly responding to its customers.
“We felt the effects face to face, as our staff manned our place at the insurance village set up in Fort Myers to aid communities and individuals,” Espino said. “Centauri professionals were there two days, and while there were long lines at other carriers and at FEMA, not a single customer or agent came seeking us out, validating the dedication and well-orchestrated hard work of our service center and field personnel. The yearly hurricanes alone are a daunting experience, even before one considers regulations and problematic laws, so we are especially gratified that our clients were well-served at a difficult time, in a difficult region.”
Sahara said that with about a month remaining in the 2022 hurricane season, Centauri has run less than halfway up its catastrophe reinsurance tower, and that the company’s successes are driving new plans.
“We are looking presently at expanding our commitment of capital and resources to the Gulf Coast homeowners markets next year,” he said. “Expect that whatever we do to seem contrarian – we’re usually going when everyone else is coming and coming when everyone else is going.”