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Satellites and Insurance - A Good Partnership

Starry night sky over residential neighborhood with a satellite flying overhead

According to a recent report by Deloitte, innovative insurance companies (like Mutual Assurance) are using satellite imagery to better manage risk with improved data collection, analysis, and actionable insights. They are also using it to reduce operational costs through improved efficiency.

Advantages of Using Satellite Imagery

When most insurance companies want updated information on the condition of a home or business, they send an inspector or loss control technician out to look over the property.  The average cost of one of these inspections is over $100, so they are used sparingly.  Innovative insurance companies, however, are turning to Satellite imagery to identify changes in the condition of the property from year to year, or even season to season, at a much lower cost. 

Companies can look for hazards like trampolines, diving boards, the presence of yard debris, and even review the condition of the roof on a building or see if an addition has been built.  This technology doesn’t eliminate the need for inspections, but it helps companies more accurately identify properties needing an onsite visit.  The bottom line is that companies can pass along the lower costs to their policyholders and eliminate the hassle of frequent and sometimes needless inspections.   


Mutual Assurance uses a satellite imagery provider called Betterview to help in three areas:

  • Identify and mitigate property risk

  • Improve underwriting and inspection efficiency

  • Build a more transparent member experience

By compiling up-to-date information on any hazards or improvements to a property, Mutual Assurance can be proactive in reducing the number of claims, ultimately impacting the annual assessment rate.

Worth Noting

Mutual Assurance will use this technology to make the underwriting process more transparent to everyone and ensure our members have adequate coverage. We will never take an underwriting action on a policy without first verifying it with the member directly. 

Satellite imagery is used by thousands of local governments and federal agencies to help identify property locations and more. While the images are clear, they are not intrusive. The FAA has guidelines that prevent the use of aerial imagery from intruding on an individual's right to privacy, and as such, Betterview does not provide "granular" imagery. Imagine what you can see when you are on a plane making its approach to an airport, and that is the level of detail Betterview provides. For example, we can make out a trampoline, but we can't see individuals.

Our ongoing mission is to ensure our policyholders benefit from all the actions we take to give them the best coverage at the most affordable rate.



Sources: Deloitte, Betterview, MSN



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