Some 7,000 homeowners in San Diego dropped by latest insurer to pull out of California

American National says severe weather, lack of profitability behind decision
New homes
Posted at 7:35 PM, Apr 05, 2024

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Roughly 7,000 homeowners in San Diego County are soon going to have to find another insurance company.

American National confirmed it’s pulling out of the California home insurance business citing severe weather events in recent years and a lack of profitability as reasons behind the exit.

“Inflationary pressures have also increased the cost of claims payments, which has compounded the lack of profitability,” said American National spokesman Scott Campbell.

Campbell confirmed of the 36,475 homeowner policies the company has in California, roughly 7,000 are in San Diego County.

The company joins a growing list of insurers who are leaving the Golden State. Two weeks ago, State Farm, a major insurer, announced it wouldn’t renew 72,000 policies.

“It's difficult enough today and it's only getting more difficult from here,” said Karl Susman, an insurance broker, who’s been sounding the alarm about companies leaving the state.

Susman is advising anyone who’s gotten a non-renewal notice to start shopping for a new provider right away.

“The market is very, very tight. So, something that you might be able to find today literally may not be available tomorrow or the next day."

Customers who can’t find an insurer to take them on can turn to the California Fair Plan, which is meant as a last resort.

Susman said consumers going to the plan need to be prepared to pay high premiums and know it’s basic fire insurance only.

“There's no liability. There's no (coverage) for water, which we've seen quite a bit of recently. There's no theft coverage. There's no workers comp if you have a housekeeper or a gardener (who gets injured).

Campbell described American National as a very small-scale home insurer in California with a roughly 0.4% share of the California homeowner’s market.

“We are supporting our agents as they explore alternative options for our clients,” he said.