Mercury Insurance is now using FireLine
It’s always exciting when the insurance company in which you place the most business with opens up their homeowner’s insurance program to allow even more clients!
Mercury Insurance is now using the FireLine Risk Evaluation Tool when assessing the potential risk of a wildfire striking your home. In the past, Mercury would not accept any risk where the home was within 2000 feet of brush but this had the effect of turning away some perfectly good homeowner’s risks. With FireLine, Mercury is using technology and science to determine whether a home risk is acceptable or not.
So how does FireLine work? It uses three key elements to determine a FireLine score; fuel, slope, and access.
· Fuel – Grass, trees, or dense brush feed a wildfire. That’s why some companies insist that trees get trimmed so they aren’t touching the house. Certain trees such as eucalyptus trees are like pouring gasoline onto a fire.
· Slope – The FireLine tool measures slope surrounding a home. Steep slopes can intensify a wildfire. Generally, fire travels up a slope much faster than down a slope.
· Access – This is simply a review of the access roads to your home. Limited access and dead-end roads can impede firefighting equipment.
Using a scientific approach, Mercury Insurance now accepts more property risks that were turned away in the past. Why are they doing this? They want more quality property business and they want to write more auto and home packages.
We’ve added the American Strategic Insurance Company (ASI)
ASI has teamed up with the Progressive Insurance Company. In California, Progressive has historically accepted hard to place auto risks due to the type of vehicle or the driver’s driving record. They are in the process of amending their auto program to be able to capture preferred good driver risks as well. But, to do this effectively, they really needed a strong, well-known homeowner’s product to offer to consumers as well.
We can write a standalone ASI homeowner’s policy as well as packaging the home and auto to generate a multi-policy discount. Progressive chose ASI to team up with because they are able to provide customer service, technology, and claims service that Progressive customers have gotten used to over the years.
Since we just received the ASI appointment, we haven’t had a chance to write a lot of business with them yet so I cannot pass along an assessment of the program but I’m confident that a program that passed muster with Progressive should be of a like quality and benefit many.
It’s an exciting time at Ken May Insurance Services because of these changes. We’ve found that many homeowners’ risks that did not qualify for Mercury are now acceptable. Adding ASI, Mercury Insurance wanting to write more homeowner’s insurance, and having our other fine auto and property products at our disposal is like having Christmas in September.