Insurance premiums slashed up to 25 percent after Holly Springs FD receives highest state rating

HOLLY SPRINGS, N.C. (WTVD) -- Some Holly Springs business owners will soon see their insurance premiums slashed more than 25 percent, thanks to the fire department ranking among the top 1 percent in the nation.

"We're in the top half of one percent of all departments nationwide," said Holly Springs Fire Chief LeRoy Smith.

The town just improved its class rating to 1.

There are only 11 towns in North Carolina that have a rating that high.

Three places in Wake County made the list.

Raleigh and Cary also have a rating of 1.

The North Carolina Department of Insurance estimates in Holly Springs, on average, homeowners will now be seeing their insurance premiums decrease by 8.5 percent and the really big savings will be for business owners.

Prices should be cut by a whopping 25 percent.

Vicki Harry opened Thanks A Latte seven years ago.

Harry has seen sales slowly drip in. She's built up her business one cup at a time into the popular place it is today.

"Every dollar counts," she said. "25 percent is really an amazing number."

The fire department was able to drastically improve its ISO rating.

Insurance companies will look to this when quantifying risk in a community.

Staffing levels, response time, population and road infrastructure are taken into account.

Officials credit hard work and a little help from a dog named Cinder.

He's cute, cuddly, and came with tons of bonus points for the rating.

"We have him trained to help us teach fire safety education and he's really taken off," said Smith.

The department also hosts several events and there is an Open House on Saturday, Oct. 12 at Station 1.

Smith hopes to maintain the new standing, which will keep premiums down and let like business owners like Harry sustain their spot in the neighborhood.

"Over the years, you just incur so many expenses," she said. "To finally be able rest a little bit knowing that we'll be able to get a little bit of that money back, or save a little at the end of the year, that's really great. We're going to be very excited about that."

A state official said people should see the rate change either when they sign a new policy or renew.

The takeaway is this kind of savings is something folks in every community can enjoy.

You can reach out to your local fire department and push for a better rating to bring your insurance down.
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