Hardening Your Home Pays Off
“Mitigation” can generally be defined as “lessening the severity of something” and “construction mitigation” refers to actions that reduce the risk to property from hazards. The good news is that the cost of protecting your property can now be shared by your insurer.For example, under Florida law, property insurers are required to offer Florida homeowners discounts for construction techniques that reduce damage and loss.
Products and techniques that allow for discounted property insurance premiums include:
- enhanced roof strength such as stronger roof decks that are attached with closely spaced, longer nails, as well as the use of stronger roof coverings that include water barriers.
- improved roof to wall connections such as metal hurricane straps and other anchoring fasteners
- improved protect openings through the installation of impact resistant products at windows, doors, and garage door penetrations.
- Each home is evaluated on an individual basis and premium reductions are based on an inspection
- The inspection is performed by an individual approved by the insurance company
- The insurer may require you to pay the costs associated with the inspection
California is also working with insurers to incentivize fortified rebuilding. In this case, protecting against earthquake and wildfire damage is emphasized. Visit CEA for information. FLASH and IBHSare good sources of information.
Although a reduction in the cost of your property insurance is a good incentive to build (or re-build) stronger and better, the best reason will always be for the protection of you, your family, and your valuables. So contact your insurer or agent for an estimate of the cost savings that are tied to hardening your home against natural disasters. And make sure you hire a competent and qualified contractor to perform your work because although products such as windows and doors may be designed to resist hurricane winds, when improperly installed, they will fail. Check your Florida contractors credentials here.