From Want Shared Risk On Wildfires

Wildires and Homes in the WUI-A recipe for an insurance loss…

By Jim Kalvelage, Ruidoso News, N.M.
McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

April 03–Insurance companies want homeowners living inside wildland-urban interface communities to “share the risk” with them. The bottom line, according to a presentation prepared by the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, was insurers are less willing to insure and renew any high-risk customers.

“Why should homeowners be interested in protecting their property when it comes to wildfires?” asked Matt Brenner, an official with State Farm Fire and Casualty Insurance Company in New Mexico. “The bottom line is giving the availability and affordability of insurance to people who want to live in those areas,” he said of homes in wildland-urban interfaces. “Insurance is about risk and companies are less willing to insure people who are a bad risk.”

Brenner, who was to have been one of two people to talk about wildfire and insurance matters before the New Mexico Wildland-Urban Interface Summit inRuidoso, filled in Tuesday for Carol Walker, the executive director of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association. He ran through the association's presentation because Walker was assisting homeowners impacted by the 4,140-acre Lower North Fork Fire that broke out last week southwest ofDenver.

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