Property State of the Market at a Glance

Want to know more about what to expect in the insurance marketplace but don’t have time to read a 10+ page State of the Market? Interested in emerging trends and market or capacity changes? Gain the key marketplace insights you need at just a glance with our easy-to-read 2024 guides.




2024 will see capacity and structure similar to that of 2023. For Western states, especially CA, brush-exposed areas limit available market capacity and drive higher rates as well as tighter terms. The cost of lumber, building materials, and labor has tempered since the start of 2024.


The market appears healthy with capacity from MGAs increasing their treaty holdings. Frame non-CAT Builder’s Risk, while still relatively expensive, has plateaued/stabilized primarily because most projects with values of $25M or above require multiple participants to complete due to underwriting discipline. The industry has experienced enough “CAT fires” in this class to stay content with smaller line sizes. Put simply, smaller line sizes and minimum premium requirements based on capital structure will still result in a disciplined market in 2024. It is not anticipated that the non-traditional Builder’s Risk markets that considered projects within the $25M - $125M range at opportunistic premium levels will be as active on placements during 2024. Builder’s Risk projects above $25M are drawing the interest of new entrants, but high-density projects will remain disciplined in terms and conditions. Projects with less than $25M in TIV should be able to secure coverage through a sole carrier whether an MGA or certain single carriers.

Garden style, multiple building frame projects started to see rates soften in 2023. How carriers will react to the trend in 2024 – whether they continue to push growth goals or start to pull back capacity as the rates tick down, remains to be seen. Tougher projects including modular construction, less experienced contractors, or natural CAT-driven risks will continue to remain disciplined in underwriting.


Engineered or superior concrete/steel construction projects have ample capacity; however, carriers are reverting to quota share much more frequently rather than relying entirely on single market solutions. Smaller line sizes and smaller shares will continue to be prominent in 2024 as carriers look to remove outlier losses. Capacity is available even in CAT prone areas. High density frame will be more costly. M&C and fire-resistant construction will see more muted pricing.


Projects where it is required to insure an existing building along with the portion undergoing structural renovations are still challenging, especially if the building is a landmark or older building. These placements require strong underwriting review to understand how the proposed renovations will impact the existing structure. Also, the market for structural renovations, including existing building coverage is limited. Generally, if the building values are greater than the renovation, most Builder’s Risk carriers will insure the renovations and ask that the property market continue to cover the existing building. Alternatively, if the renovation values exceed the value of an existing building, the Builder’s Risk carrier may be more willing to include coverage for the existing property.

While non-structural renovation sees some activity in the E&S market, it remains a standard market play.


It is becoming more difficult to maintain insurance on large homes during the construction process. Homes are taking longer to build due to the settling of the prolonged supply chain and workforce challenges post COVID. Several standard Builder’s Risk markets will not extend beyond 2 years. Other markets are not willing to offer coverage on a mid-term project. Brokers and underwriters must get creative to find ways to insure ongoing construction risks.

Specifically, the market for wood frame high-value homes in CAT regions is firm. There are a handful of markets willing to consider coverage, but the market gets especially difficult above $10M in value. Coastal frame is still challenging in some areas (i.e. barrier islands). The market for better construction on coastal Builder’s Risk is very robust and supply remains adequate as pricing is stabilizing.


Natural CAT will continue to be a firm market around frame construction, especially wildfire and named storm. With three sizeable frame habitational fires each with over $50M in damage in 2023, the market for wood frame construction within CAT regions will continue to tighten throughout 2024. In short, carriers are hedging their exposures with smaller line sizes making virtually every placement shared and layered.


  • A focus on site security and risk controls to mitigate fire, theft, and water damage claims remain key for larger projects.
  • With lingering supply chain issues and potential labor shortages for some areas, project terms may be longer and current in-force projects are likely to require extensions.
  • Project extensions typically see higher rates and depending on original start date may require market replacement. When requesting a project extension, it’s important to have a good explanation to share. Insureds are likely to receive the first extension and even a second one if needed, but it’s very difficult to obtain any additional extension beyond that. This means if a second extension is required, it’s important to overshoot on the timeline.
  • Builder’s Risk rates are reviewed monthly for adjustments and underwriters have established a quoting cadence that aligns 30 days before the “true” project start date. Retail producers still require budgetary numbers on future projects and based on our data and knowledge, brokers are providing indication ranges.
  • Construction in catastrophe-prone areas adds to flood risk and in wildfire-prone areas increases the risk of wildfires not just through human activity, but also utilities risk.


The 2023 Atlantic hurricane season ranks 4th for most-named storms in a year, witnessing 20 named storms, six more than the average pre-season forecasts expected. The impact of 2023 hurricanes, specifically storm surge and floods, highlights the need to accurately model and incorporate secondary perils into CAT models. The increasing impact of such perils due to climate change requires additional research and more advanced development in secondary peril modeling to fully evaluate and mitigate disaster risks. While current modeling advancements have been substantial, accurately capturing the complicated potential impact of secondary perils remains challenging.

In summary, these events and their anticipated results will continue the trend of a disciplined underwriting environment with regards to the appetite for CAT Wind in the U.S. and Caribbean. MGAs that have seen their capacity either pulled or growth limited for 2023 are now hunting for more capacity in 2024 to regain market share.

The early part of 2024 suggests the year will continue in alignment with marketplace trends established in years past. Singlecarrier MGA placements will now require multiple participants and limits available may be short in some cases. It’s expected that loss-free CAT Wind accounts will see rate trends from plus 5% to flat due to underwriters’ desire to expand market share in 2024. Severely loss impacted accounts could see double-digit increases. Markets continue to focus on underwriting discipline; however, increased appetite to gain market share has introduced renewed competition on many accounts.* As of February 2024, the Southeastern CAT market remains in a state of change and increasing appetite.

* These comments can be widely applicable across all risks in these geographies or segments.


Some excess layers once contested may see flat premiums or in some cases, reductions.* This region will continue to soften during 2024.


This region is starting to slow the rate of increases and reflects a desire by many underwriters to increase market share. The introduction of new markets along with a renewed appetite from the Lloyds market has enhanced the available CAT capacity and is slowing the rate of increases while creating competition on programs that was absent over the previous few years.


See Convective Storm Segment


Following the 2023 Lahaina fire stoked by offshore hurricane winds, Hawaii’s local markets are further tightening underwriting standards, non-renewing older construction or loss-driven accounts, and reducing hurricane capacity. Particularly hard-hit areas are post-1980s construction with little information on updates and improvements. Unlike the Southeast, the region is experiencing greater capacity reduction with fewer E&S markets to replace the lost capacity due to its Island location and volatility associated with replacing materials and labor costs.


  • Carriers continue to request increased amounts of data. Utilizing that data and modeling is helping to drive insureds’ purchasing habits, enabling them to buy smarter and negotiate with carriers.
  • Capturing information about building updates and improvements to wiring, plumbing, HVAC, and roofing as well as reserve studies for residential associations are critical for maximizing capacity and optimizing pricing.
  • Terms are stable for smaller middle-market accounts.
  • Larger accounts are overlining due to pressure on pricing. New capacity is also pushing rate downward and displacing the last-minute opportunistic capacity that signed on to previous year renewals.*
  • Larger, clean accounts that have developed relationships with markets through the years should be able to negotiate a single-digit decrease by incumbents remaining flat and new markets replacing higher program participants.*
  • Insureds that have gone without coverage will be looking to resume coverage in 2024.

* These comments can be widely applicable across all risks in these geographies or segments.



After a year of pricing volatility and tight carrier capacity in 2023, the earthquake insurance market is expected to stabilize in 2024. Inflation rocked property insurance markets throughout last year, and the earthquake coverage market was no exception. Reinsurers scrutinized insurance-to-values (ITVs) to ensure that premium aligned with potential reconstruction costs and risk profiles. In 2024, most insurance carriers have adjusted to align with market expectations. However, this stabilization does not imply that prices will return to the levels seen before inflation. Agents and policyholders should anticipate +5% to flat upon renewal. The market for earthquake insurance varies significantly by region and is tailored to the unique needs and objectives of property owners.


California is the epicenter of earthquake risk in the United States. This is still a firm market and there isn’t a lot of increased capacity.


The New Madrid fault line, which covers portions of Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, and Illinois, has been assigned the highest level of hazard risk by the United States Geological Survey. The agency estimates the fault line has a 25% - 40% chance of experiencing a magnitude 6.0 or higher earthquake in the next 50 years. This market remains guarded but competitive.


For newer construction, more MGAs are offering competitive terms where they were significantly higher in prior years. While rate increases are noticeably less compared to 2023 (down to single digit and flat in some cases) several markets are reducing enhancements (i.e. ensuing water damage, ordinance and flood that was previously included at same as earthquake limit). Older construction continues to be problematic with fewer markets and demand for return on equity driving rates higher.


  • Age of structures on the property and building type are key factors. Older buildings are often viewed as higher risk. Masonry structures are sometimes seen as a greater risk because there is less give and flexibility.
  • Outlining proactive steps taken to prevent quake damage such as retrofitting or foundation bolting to prevent damage can help underwriters better assess a risk. Accuracy of the application regarding square footage, construction details, and other details is also key.
  • Outlining potential for ancillary risks such as flooding, fire, and more in the aftermath of an earthquake can also give a more comprehensive view of a property’s overall risk profile.


Flood lines in high-risk zones or in areas with prior flood history such as New Orleans, Houston, and many coastal areas will remain short. Flood insurance renewals are seeing rates climb 5% to flat. Securing elevation certificates and development of flood PML’s can be helpful in securing better terms. Additionally, including flood in All Risk coverage may help mitigate increases because premium allocated for flood is generally lower than stand-alone flood coverage. Capacity remains available for smaller flood carve outs. When it comes to smaller flood risks, there is greater competition in both primary and excess markets. Private primary flood markets can often offer competitive rates as well as improved coverage over the NFIP, including replacement cost valuation and business income as well as coverage for multiple locations within a single policy. When it comes to open market flood coverage, the more difficult occupancies still include beverage distributors, condos over water, heavy machinery & equipment schedules, and accounts with significant BI exposure. Capacity for accounts with negative elevation or a history of flood claims remains limited and more expensive. Carriers are typically holding line size to $2.5M - $5M and prefer to utilize quota share. It will continue to require up to 6-7 carriers to achieve a $25M limit. Large flood renewals usually require new capacity.


  • Flood certificates and risk management mitigation plans are critical for high hazard exposures.


Historically, habitational business has fallen victim to Insurance-to-Value (ITV) fluctuations, and underwriting discipline is working to correct the market. Property capacity is scarce. Carriers struggling with profitability in this segment are exiting the market, and underwriting guidelines are tighter across the board. However, the habitational property market - worth $22 billion - needs to be serviced, presenting opportunity for brokers and agents to thrive in the sector. With the advent of sophisticated modeling tools, there is no hiding for habitational risks. Today, minimum ITVs of $125 - $150 per sq. ft. are needed on Statements of Value (SOVs). Refusing to adhere to this discipline will earn silence or a declination from underwriters. As admitted carriers’ habitational appetites shrink, non- admitted excess and surplus (E&S) line markets have become an increasingly attractive coverage option - not only for challenging risks but also as an alternative for traditional accounts. In other words, non-admitted coverage is no longer a last resort. It’s a viable option offering greater flexibility compared to standard markets.


This segment remains extremely challenged. Very few carriers are willing to review pre-1990 construction and many have instituted hard stops. Remaining markets are charging much higher premiums and deductibles while continuing to scrutinize valuation. There is reduced appetite nationwide for older frame and joisted masonry (JM) construction. Structures with older electrical panels, aluminum wiring, or older roofs will also have fewer market options. Previously, 15 – 20 carriers quoted this class/construction, generating robust competition. Only a handful of markets remain to dictate both terms and pricing. Insureds need to brace for what could be upwards of triple-digit increases if a traditional standard market is non-renewing on older real estate (pre-1990) due to the performance of older construction, which has limited the number of carriers willing to provide terms for older property.


On newer frame habitational accounts, including sprinklered podiums, there is able capacity. Regarding sprinklered podium exposures, admitted and program markets may seek confirmation of NFPA 13 as opposed to NFPA 13R sprinklers. Virtually any habitational account that has a modicum level of CAT exposure will require a shared approach. This requires a transition to layered policies that tend to drive premium up due to carrier minimum premiums and maximum capacity guidelines as well as perceived fire risk.


  • The need for more data holds true for all habitational exposures, but because of its market share it also requires proper coding of all key metrics in modeling.
  • Capturing information about building updates and improvements to wiring, plumbing, HVAC, and roofing as well as reserve studies for residential associations are critical for maximizing capacity and optimizing pricing.
  • There continues to be a strong underwriting focus on valuation adequacy.
  • AOP and CAT deductibles are increasing, and standard markets continue to exit the space.


High hazard manufacturing / food processing is still a firm market, especially for heavy manufacturing, and creativity continues to drive placements. Utilizing London and re-evaluating how the primary is structured are paramount.* On food classes, many underwriters have restricted line sizes. Manufacturing accounts continue to be pushed out of the admitted market and into the wholesale channel. Accounts coming from the admitted market typically see significant increases in cost. It’s common for a manufacturing risk coming from a single carrier admitted placement to require multiple carriers to achieve required limits. The need for comprehensive engineering data is imperative for these placements.


  • Risk engineering is critical - Delivery of timely loss control inspections and engineering reports are vital to gaining underwriting interest or to enable carriers to maximize carrier capacity.
  • Client / underwriting meetings are highly encouraged with agendas that focus on operations and capital expenditure discussions.*

* These comments can be widely applicable across all risks in these geographies or segments.



In recent years, severe convective storms—including severe thunderstorms, hailstorms, tornadoes, and derechos—have become a greater peril to insurers. With a season that peaks from March through June, severe convective storms are among the most common and most damaging natural catastrophes in the U.S. Severe convective storms were the largest contributor to global insurance and reinsurance market losses due to catastrophe events in the first quarter of 2023, generating more than $10 billion in insured losses. The most recent convective storms that spread through Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi hit the Gulf Coast and nearby states, adding to the potential perils that can impair the results of property writers in those states. For all four states, the loss ratios among concentrated insurers have been rising, with a moderate degree of recent volatility attributed to storm severity. That these storms occurred during hurricane season added to the hazards insurers face during these months and lessens the degree of risk diversification in the portfolios of property insurers.


  • The increasing severity and breadth of convective storms are hampering the efforts of insurers to effectively diversify their portfolios.
  • Secondary perils continue to have a more significant impact on the underwriting results of property insurers, in addition to affecting their policyholders’ surplus.
  • Reinsurance market conditions have varied depending on the region and the level of catastrophic activity over the past few years, but terms and conditions have tightened while retention levels and premiums have significantly increased for Severe Convective Storms.
  • Modeling techniques for these storms have not yet been fully developed (in contrast to large catastrophe events), which makes them more challenging to predict and assess. Event tails also appear to be lengthening in some instances, with storms lasting longer and causing more damage than in the past.


2023 saw a period of relative stability in the cargo market, even while many underwriters experienced some harsher reinsurance renewals with retentions, reinsurance premiums, and restrictions in cover being imposed. Most clients renewing their cargo and stock throughput policies in 2023 enjoyed flat renewals, and this situation seems to be continuing in 2024. At this stage, the outlook for 2024 is positive. Reinsurance renewals appear stable. For the most part, rates are flat and premium increases reflect either an uplift in values or attritional losses that continue to affect an individual accounts performance. Where an uplift in values is disproportionate to a previous year, there is scope and acknowledgement from the cargo market that some credit should be given. However, this is to some degree dependent on the CAT footprint within the program and the risk management profile of the account. There is also assistance from new capacity that entered the cargo market in 2023. These markets appear to be seeking to grow their income; therefore, more capacity and subsequent price adjustments are occurring. One other aspect worth noting regarding capacity is the continued movement of underwriters within the London cargo market, which in some cases, has led to a shift in underwriting philosophy from previous years. There is an ever-growing concern over conveyances moving through the volatile Red Sea area. Attacks on container vessels in the Red Sea have been wreaking havoc on one of the world’s most important trade routes for several weeks as of February 2024.


  • Fully completed and signed STP applications will receive priority service from underwriters.


Both supply and demand for terrorism coverage have remained stable YOY as coverage is readily available both domestically and through Lloyds. Pricing remains competitive as there are limited new entrants into the space. Demand for Active Assailant coverage continues to increase as risk managers utilize it to round out coverages due to ongoing security issues. Pricing for Active Assailant coverage is firm, and capacity is readily available depending on class of business.




Wildfire capacity continues to be firm. Wildfires appear to no longer adhere only to a particular season and pricing property risks based on prior experience is particularly challenging because catastrophe models do not yet fully consider population growth. In wildfire-prone areas in CA and other western states this has led to higher economic and insured losses. In summary, this has led to availability and affordability issues for consumers because of a (re)insurance crunch.


  • Modeling for secondary perils like wildfires is evolving, and insurers continue to address exposures to these risks in their portfolios through underwriting and pricing actions.
  • Secondary perils such as wildfires now account for a larger share of the losses from catastrophe events than primary perils such as hurricanes.
  • It has become more commonplace that at least one secondary peril event, such as a winter storm, a severe flood event, a wind event, or a wildfire, results in losses exceeding $10 billion. Such events in densely populated areas have proven extremely costly and are becoming a more frequent threat to homeowners and property owners, generating escalating losses for (re)insurers of personal and commercial property business.
  • Wildfires are considered independent events. As such, they are frequently not modeled and traditionally receive far less monitoring from the insurance industry than primary perils. However, over the last few years, brokers and modelers have begun modeling more consistently.

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