Farmers Insurance Asks for Rate Hike

Rate hike could hit 370,000 Texas homeowners

By Omar Villafranca
|  Friday, Nov 7, 2008  |  Updated 10:21 PM CDT
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Farmers Insurance Asks for Rate Hike

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Insurance rates could go up by 10 percent for thousands of Texas homeowners.

Farmers Insurance asked the state for the rate hike. If approved, it will go into effect early next year.

"It's a pretty bold move, with the economy the way it is," Frisco resident Jim Miller said. "People are going to have to start saving as much money as they can, and money's going to be tight."

Michelle Levy, a spokesperson for the insurance giant, said increased costs in labor and materials prompted the request. The company said request for a hike is not connected to the devastation caused by Hurricanes Dolly and Ike.

Farmers Insurance has policies on more than 370,000 homes in Texas.

"I'm getting squeezed, and I'm sitting here thinking, 'Where is it going to come from?'" business owner Ron Battaglia said.

Some policy holders said a rate hike will force them to find cheaper insurance.

"That's a lot of money," Frisco resident Maureen Gutierrez said. "I'm going to have to investigate other options and shop around, because it's a huge increase."

But the company said it is dropping rates on condos in Texas by an average of 10 percent.

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