Lenders have changed their practices in the wake of major storms. Do insurance rules need to change also?
Owners and buyers of multifamily housing are experiencing sticker shock when they refinance, sell or purchase properties. Insurance premiums have jumped as much as 25% because of the broadened insurance requirements set forth by lenders.
GlobeSt.com caught up with Ryan Cassidy and Evan Seacat, both senior directors at Franklin Street Insurance Services, to get some insight into how multifamily owners and buyers should adapt in this new environment.
GlobeSt.com: Do the insurance rules need to be relaxed or eliminated?
Cassidy: We do not see that happening. Investors in securities backed by multifamily housing and the lenders themselves do not want a repeat of what happened last decade.
Owners and buyers must adapt to this new environment. They can find lenders who have fewer insurance requirements for mortgages, but those banks will have lower loan-to-value ratios than Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
GlobeSt.com: What should multifamily property owners and buyers do in this new environment?
Seacat: The same thing the banks did: get smarter about the market. It has not dried up the way it did after Hurricane Katrina and 9/11.
Borrowers can find coverage, but it is often too expensive. Before buying or refinancing, owners and buyers should explore their options and ask for references.
Their mortgage and real estate brokers can point them in the right direction. With a little work, they can find the right coverage and stay within budget.