This is reportedly the first-ever admitted green insurance available to homeowners in the United States. Fireman’s Fund (www.firemansfund.com/green) is offering this product to homeowners who currently own green homes or who want to upgrade their residences with green features after a loss using environmental safety and efficiency standards. If a home is completely destroyed, it can be rebuilt to green standards, certified as having Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design status (LEED , www.usgbc.org/leed).“We believe this is a trend-setting insurance solution for homeowners who are interested in the many benefits of ‘going green’ at home,” said Donald Soss, chief underwriting officer for Fireman’s Fund Personal Insurance.
Homeowners whose residences are already green will be offered a five percent discount on this coverage, applied to the homeowner premium.
According to the National Center for Healthy Housing (www.centerforhealthyhousing.org), homeowners can expect substantial health gains by building green.
With this new coverage, homeowners will be able to rebuild and replace with green alternatives such as:
The green homeowners insurance is now approved for homeowners in 26 states (Arizona, District of Columbia, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming), with most other states expected to offer the coverage by year-end. The Coverage will be available in California as part of the Prestige® Home Premier Policy on Aug. 1.
Fireman’s Fund first offered green insurance to the U.S. commercial marketplace in fall 2006. It gave the first financial incentive for green building owners – a five percent discount on the policy premium – for LEED-certified buildings. Vegetated roofs, plumbing and electrical systems, commissioning and the costs for green recertification fees for previously certified buildings are all included coverages that fill the gaps in traditional insurance policies.
The company’s Commercial insurance division has expanded its green offerings to include historic buildings, hotels, restaurants, manufacturing facilities and commercial auto. Its Specialty insurance division also offers green coverage for commercial buildings that are under construction.