Before you apply for property insurance, you may want to check your credit score. Florida’s fourth-largest homeowner’s insurance carrier, Heritage Property & Casualty Insurance Company, is making plans to check credit scores in an alleged effort to provide lower rates to its customers.

Heritage’s president admitted that rates could be increased for an existing customer if the company discovers bad credit in addition to a history of filing excessive claims. According to the Sun Sentinel, in states where this practice is more common, “the effects on pricing can be dramatic” even raising premiums by 100 percent for a drop in credit. The full Sun Sentinel article can be viewed at http://www.sun-sentinel.com/business/realestate/fl-heritage-insurance-credit-checks-20150924-story.html.

Florida’s policyholders already pay some of the highest insurance premiums in the country due, in part, to an increased risk of loss from the threat of hurricanes. Now, Florida consumers have to remain even more vigilant when applying for property insurance. It is important to review your policy application and all correspondence from your insurance company to make sure you understand whether you are opting into a credit check, as well as other issues, such as agreeing to the assignment of your policy to another insurance carrier or waiving your right to important policy coverages.