California to require insurance discounts for property owners who reduce wildfire risk

October 17, 2022

Los Angeles Times- Hayley Smith

California will become the first state in the nation to require insurance premium discounts for owners of homes and businesses that are made safer from wildfires.

New rules mandate that insurance companies reward consumers who take wildfire safety and mitigation actions under the state’s Safer From Wildfires framework, the Department of Insurance announced Monday. The framework includes a list of expert-recommended actions that home and business owners can take to better protect themselves from fires.

The regulation is largely a response to skyrocketing insurance costs for residents in wildfire-prone areas, Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara said. Currently, fewer than half of the insurance companies doing business in California provide such discounts.

“Protecting Californians from deadly wildfires means everyone doing their part, including insurance companies by rewarding consumers for being safer from wildfires,” Lara said in a statement.

October 17, 2022

The Sacramento Bee – Dale Kasler

California can’t force insurance companies to offer coverage in areas of the state prone to wildfires. But when they do sell policies in wildfire zones, the state can require them to offer discounts to homeowners who install fire-resilient roofs and double-pane windows, and take other steps to reduce the hazards.