The Fire Safe Council of Nevada County has been working to establish Firewise Communities/USA since 2007 and have assisted 11 communities in the process. They are currently working with three new communities to become certified in 2014.
While educating the community on the Firewise Communities/USA program residents often ask if they will receive a discount from their homeowner’s insurance company.
Up until today, the answer was “no” with a few anecdotal, site-specific exceptions. California Insurance Commissioner, Dave Jones, announced the approval of a set of rate changes submitted by the United Services Automobile Association that will provide anywhere from 12 to 16 percent savings on homeowner insurance premiums for the typical USAA customer in California. If that customer also happens to live in a recognized Firewise Community/USA, they will get an additional 5 percent break on their premium.
“This is very exciting news and validation that the Firewise Community/USA program is effective in mitigating wildfire. Offering a premium discount will likely drive more communities to attain the national Firewise certification.
“We also have hopes that other insurance carriers will recognize the value of the Firewise program.” said Joanne Drummond, Executive Director of the Fire Safe Council of Nevada County.