BOMA International polled members nationwide on their experiences with terrorism insurance coverage. The survey showed that more than one quarter of those who responded were unable to obtain terrorism insurance at any cost. While 74% were able to secure coverage, most incurred higher premiums, caps on coverage, higher deductibles, cancellation clauses of 60 days or less, and/or exclusions for chemical, biological, or radiological acts. Premium increases ranged from about 20% up to 200%, BOMA officials said. The survey also showed that a large majority of building owners (80%) are planning to pass at least some of the cost on to their tenants.
As is often true in real estate, location proved to be a major factor: 69% of those surveyed said that where the building was located made purchasing terrorism insurance difficult.
Getting a reduction in insurance rates or terms also proved a challenge. Half of all survey respondents cited that they were unable to get a break on their premiums, while 28% cited that providing insurers with detailed building data and insurance history did result in a reduction in the price of the policy. Another 24% said that increasing building security helped somewhat. Other factors that helped reduce premiums included having the same insurance company for many years and the timing of policy renewals.
"This survey clearly confirms that insurance coverage for terrorism events is largely unavailable at any price, and the product that is available is faulty and does not meet the needs of building owners and managers," said BOMA President Larry F. Soehren. "As we continue to address these issues on Capitol Hill, it is absolutely necessary for Congress to step forward swiftly to provide a federal backstop in the events of future _terrorist attacks."
For more information, go to www.boma.org.