Insurance Journal

FL - Home Insurance as a Work Benefit? Recoop Says It’s Bringing it to Florida and All States

Health insurance. Dental insurance. Accidental death and dismemberment. Why not homeowners insurance as an employee benefit?

Wood is the founder and chief product officer at Recoop Disaster Insurance, which is now in 42 states and offers a type of parametric homeowners coverage, up $25,000 per policy. Recoop, based in Iowa, announced this month that it is now doing business in Florida and most states, underwritten by Professional Solutions Insurance Co. (PSIC). Recoop’s entrance into the Florida market, along with four new carriers in recent weeks, has given some hope to a state that has been battered by insurer insolvencies, limits on new business, and soaring premiums.

Recoop is, at this point, a general agent of PSIC, a wholly owned subsidiary of NCMIC Insurance Co. which began as a malpractice insurer for chiropractors but now offers personal lines and business coverage.

To find out more about the company and the product, which is designed to cover even some of the losses from storm surge, Insurance Journal sat down for an interview with Wood. Previously with Marsh and with Holmes Murphy & Associates, Wood said he has been working on the parametric idea for a number of years, as a product that major U.S. employers can offer their remote workers, especially those in disaster-prone states where HO premiums and deductibles have risen dramatically in the last half-decade.

Wood’s comments have been lightly edited for brevity and clarity.

IJ: Why is Recoop moving into Florida now?

One of the things goes back to our overall distribution approach. With the top 15 carriers spending roughly $1 billion a year on advertising, that is not something we could compete with. So we made the decision early on, due in large part to my past work experience, that the focus was going to be on distributing the product through the employee benefits space and through associations.

Wood (Linkedin)

I spent nine years with Marsh Consumer, which is now under the Mercer umbrella. Our primary customers were Fortune 1000 employers, and we brought voluntary benefits programs to the table for them as well as the large associations out there, offering the product as a member benefit. From that standpoint, the brokers and distributors in those spaces are the ones responsible for distributing and marketing the program.

Why Florida, why now? Well, given the brokers we deal with and their customers, most of them, the employers have national employee bases. So it’s really a must for them that we have to be in all 50 states. And that’s more on the association side. We have a lot of large associations queued up but we can’t roll out to them at all until we get all 50 states, plus DC.

IJ: So brokers are actually offering Recoop as an employee benefit now?

They are. Predominantly on a voluntary basis. But also, we have seen a couple of firms realize, in today’s environment, that it had appeal and they were going to buy it for their employees as an employer-paid product. Again, we’re just kind of on the tip of that. We have two that have adopted that and we have several others, much larger, that are considering doing that. One of the primary drivers there is the workforce moving to a hybrid work environment. Really, working from home, that’s their office, so if a family is displaced from their home, they can’t get up and running, so it’s not a viable employee contributing to the workforce.

So, this gives them ability to help out with their disaster risk-mitigation plan.

I can’t give names now. But one is a smaller employer, under 500 employees. The other is offering it just to hybrid employees. One association is very large, transportation-related.

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