Orlando - The latest release of ISO HomeValue, a residential replacement cost estimator, now allows personal lines insurers to assess catastrophe risk for individual properties using Boston-based AIR Worldwide Corp.'s (AIR) industry standard catastrophe models. The goal, says the companies, is to provide access to essential catastrophe risk data from a single web-based application, ISO HomeValue enables improved underwriting decisions.   "After the large hurricane losses of 2004 and 2005, companies were reminded of the importance of assessing a property's catastrophe risk as part of the underwriting process," says George Davis, vice president at AIR. "However, most personal lines insurers have historically had very limited and inefficient ways to assess the catastrophe risk for individual properties. Now, ISO HomeValue provides residential underwriters with immediate catastrophe risk information at the individual property level in a seamless manner."   By accessing AIR's catastrophe models from within ISO HomeValue, underwriters can generate real-time estimates of catastrophe risk, as characterized by the estimated average annual loss. Insurers can use this assessment of the catastrophe risk to automate, for example, simple issue/decline decisions, rating plan selection, and price adjustment under consent-to-rate procedures.   ISO HomeValue captures a variety of property characteristics necessary for catastrophe modeling, including location, construction, building type, and year built. Additional property characteristics that may mitigate damage-such as storm shutters for hurricane risk-can also be entered to assess rate credits for such structures.   In many cases, basic property data can be automatically pre-filled using the ISO PushPin database. ISO PushPin contains specific and detailed data on key building features for more than 50 million residential properties in the United States. Agents, underwriters, and inspectors can enter additional property information into ISO HomeValue to enhance the completeness of the data.   "By employing ISO HomeValue to gather and maintain high quality property data, insurers can obtain more reliable estimates of an individual property's catastrophe loss potential, in addition to its replacement cost," continued Mr. Davis.   Source: AIR Worldwide Corp.

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