"I know exactly what's going to happen," Carpenter said. "They'd basically create their own terms."

But Carpenter couldn't afford to add sinkhole coverage with Citizens either and instead opted for a cheaper catastrophic ground collapse policy.

Regardless, he was more comfortable with Citizens.

"If you have a claim, you have better odds of the funds being there with Citizens, whether you settle or come to an understanding on repairs," he said.

But that's not always the case, as one Miami Gardens retiree found out in recent years.

Frank Gomez, 67, battled Citizens for nearly two years before getting some satisfaction on a claims settlement.

Gomez said a sewage line burst beneath the kitchen floor in his 40-year-old, four-bedroom ranch home, and he needed a public adjuster and attorney before finally receiving a $40,000 settlement. After paying the public adjuster his 20 percent — $8,000 — Gomez said he had enough money to pay for approximately half of his loss.

"Believe me, it was terrible," Gomez said.