Advisors whose high-net-worth clients have trouble getting coverage for their homes in coastal and other hard-to-insure areas might want to take a look at PURE. While not yet available everywhere, Privilege Underwriters Reciprocal Exchange (PURE) has moved into the coastal and mid-Atlantic markets in a big way, offering coverage for “high-value, well-built homes,” as well as watercraft, collectibles, and personal excess liability.
The HNW market, according to PURE founder and president Ross Buchmueller, is underserved, with “lots of signs of inefficiencies.” The companies serving this market, he says, were “very large commercial insurers that had a personal insurance division,” rather than companies dedicated exclusively to that demographic, and he felt that there was a “tremendous opportunity” to focus solely on the HNW market. In addition, customer satisfaction surveys showed that policyholder-owned companies dominated the top levels. He also cites the “post-Hurricane Katrina insurance reaction. If you could get it, affordability was quite challenging.”
Founded in 2006, PURE began offering coverage in Florida, reasoning that the high-net-worth, with houses built to higher standards than those of the general public, would be better risks than the average individual.
The company began offering policies a few hundred at a time, in communities such as Palm Beach and Naples; then it began to move into other states. Currently PURE offers coverage not only in Florida but also in South Carolina, New York, and New Jersey, enrolling “a few hundred or a few thousand families,” with the lure not only of coverage in a tough market but also substantial savings on premiums–something that in today’s economic conditions tempts even the HNW.