Understanding the Importance of Risk in Underwriting

Understanding the Importance of Risk in Underwriting
Understanding insurance means understanding risk. As an insurer, your job is to accurately determine the level of insurance risk represented by each of your potential policyholders. The risk is the chance that something unexpected and harmful may occur to cause a financial loss covered by the policy. In property insurance, this may be the loss or damage of property or possessions or an incident that causes someone to become injured and which the policyholder may be held liable.
Understanding risk is an essential part of accurate insurance policy underwriting. As an insurer, you are accepting a transfer of risk from each policyholder in exchange for their payment of premium dollars of a sufficient amount to, hopefully, more than cover your costs of doing business. You must assess and price various potential risks to determine what amount of premium you need to collect in order to offset any claims for items covered within the policy. As a rule, the higher the perceived risk, the higher the premium required for coverage.

Insurance Risk Value
Putting a financial value on a specific risk means calculating the probability that a property loss may occur through theft, damage or destruction. It also involves determining how often these things could happen and the cost of repair or replacement. You must also take into account potential liability costs that may occur in conjunction with the property being covered.

By accurately pricing risk, you’ll be able to more accurately know how much money you need to have in reserve in order to pay future claims. Effective risk management strategies incorporate accurate, comprehensive property inspections as part of the underwriting process to ensure you have a realistic idea of the level of risk you’re considering insuring. These property inspections, such as those conducted by Insurance Risk Services, can be an impactful part of your overall risk and loss control programs.

Not All Risk Can Be Accurately Factored In
With the large data pool available to insurance underwriters, certain common risks such as housefires can fairly accurately be predicted when writing a homeowner’s policy. In the past few years, however, a combination of catastrophic events including floods, hurricanes and wildfires have hit the country with devastating effects.

These events have caused insurers to not only raise rates, but also to take a closer look at each policy account to make sure that the coverage being offered is correct and that the rates being charged represent a true reflection of the risk.

A complete and thorough property inspection is the best way to accurately access the insurance risk represented by any individual property. While we offer a variety of levels of property inspection here at Insurance Risk Services, the high-value interior inspection is the one capable of uncovering the most risks a property may have. Give us a call to discuss all your insurance inspection options.