Forget what you thought you knew about obtaining flood insurance. TypTap Insurance Company, a newly-formed HCI Group, Inc. subsidiary, is now Florida’s first licensed insurer to focus solely on flood insurance. This online platform for quoting and binding flood insurance policies promises to have you completely insured in mere minutes. TypTap was created in order to be an alternative to the National Flood Insurance Program. With many Floridians facing routine price increases and surcharges from the NFIP, HCI Group knew they had to find a solution to rising costs. TypTap is one of the few competitively priced flood insurance companies that provides such an alternative. Wally Wagoner, Vice President of Operations for TypTap, explained, “When the federal government re-drew the flood maps several years ago, there was some angst because many lenders will not give you a mortgage if you are in a designated flood zone and do not have flood insurance. Our program allows you to get insurance in a timely fashion with no hassle.” HCI Group made a conscious decision to base the TypTap offices here in Ocala because of its central location. With the company’s main offices based in Tampa, there is the possibility it could one day get hit by a hurricane. The office in Ocala, ideally located inland, would serve as the disaster recovery area for the company if their main headquarters were to suffer damage. Karin Coleman, vice president of corporate services at HCI Group, explained, “We look forward to growing our operation here, and becoming a greater part of the Ocala community as TypTap continues to grow and our staff continues to expand.”
The company held a soft opening on March 1st, and have since written over 70 policies with little marketing done to promote the product. TypTap bills itself as “Not Your Typical Insurance Company” and promises a flood insurance quote in seconds and a policy in minutes. The product’s ease of use is the most exciting part about it. While most insurance companies require elevation certificates and ask pages of questions before providing an insurance quote, TypTap only asks three questions of its users. Users are prompted to enter their home address and then answer three simple questions. Within seconds, a quote is delivered to them. They then have the option to save this quote and shop around at other places before coming back to their saved quote, or they can purchase the policy right there. All of this can be done in minutes. If you are stuck on a question or need more information, a licensed insurance customer service representative is only a phone call away. These representatives have the ability to see what you are viewing on your computer and can guide you in the right direction to obtain your quote. The entire process is done digitally, complete with an e-signature and ereceipt. Eventually, TypTap plans to have an app that customers can download and all of their flood insurance information would then be stored on there in the event of an emergency.
Another unique feature of TypTap is the proprietary Insurance Geographical Database they utilize. This program allows users to simply type in their address and then all of the information (elevation, flood zone, property type, et cetera) is given to TypTap through all of the data that the program has already collected. This allows TypTap to deliver the quote to you immediately. “Our program does the heavy lifting for our customer, so they don’t have to worry about things like elevation certificates, et cetera. We are continuously gathering data in order to be able to provide a quick turnaround for our customers,” explained Coleman. Due to customer demand, TypTap has extended their hours to now include 7-9 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m.-noon on Saturdays. As the company continues to grow, the plan is to become a full-service, 24/7 operation. The future is a bright one for TypTap as its convenient, online features continue to gain popularity amongst Floridians. It is clear that HCI Group, Inc. has “tapped” into a great idea.
By Sadie Fitzpatrick
Questions or comments about your current insurance policy? Please contact Dimmitt Insurance at (727) 475-5345 or visit www.dimmittinsurance.com