The value of a stable roof is only increased when strong hurricane winds hit your home. In areas located along the coast, the wind speeds can get intense and easily blow off your roof, especially during the hurricane season. Florida is one of the states prone to hurricanes, and most homeowners like to stay prepared.
However, getting your home ready for hurricane season is easier than it sounds. You can start by scheduling a simple wind mitigation inspection in Florida to ensure your home can withstand strong winds during a hurricane and keep your loved ones safe under its roof. Aside from protecting you, a wind mitigation inspection report is also one of the most effective ways to lower a homeowner’s insurance premium. Although most Florida homeowners already know what a wind mitigation inspection is, we are here to help you understand what it comprises with the 8 (eight) key elements of a Wind Mitigation Inspection.
What is a Wind Mitigation Inspection?
A wind mitigation inspection determines whether a home’s interior, exterior, and landscape can resist strong winds. A licensed wind mitigation inspector visually assesses various factors of a house that determine its overall wind resistance.
Getting a wind mitigation inspection helps you reveal the key point of a home that can determine whether your house can withstand a storm or get damaged during it. Typically, these inspectors also take photographs of the features that help contribute to the wind mitigation of a house. Contrary to popular belief, a wind mitigation inspection is about more than just how hurricane-proof a home is. Instead, it is more about the inspection findings, like roof contour, roof-house attachment, rafters, truss, roof materials, and water resistance of the overall house. They also help determine whether your home is up to the current building code or not.
Why You Should Get a Wind Mitigation Inspection in Florida.
Besides the general benefits of getting a wind mitigation inspection, like discovering issues with your home and potential upgrade opportunities that help you avoid significant damage to your home during a hurricane, they offer an added advantage that can help your finances significantly.
With an ideal wind mitigation inspection report, you can receive substantial discounts on your homeowner’s insurance premiums. After 2006, Florida law mandates that every insurance provider must offer a discount or price reduction for homeowner’s insurance premiums if the homeowner can produce a wind mitigation report that a qualified or certified inspector has approved. However, that is not all. You can also make critical upgrades to your home, based on your wind mitigation inspection report findings, allowing you to save further on your premiums.
If you are worried about the cost of a wind mitigation inspection, the average savings on insurance far outweigh the cost of an inspection. Florida has seen cases where homeowners have saved more than 40% on their homeowner’s insurance premiums by using their wind mitigation inspection reports.
8 (Eight) Key Elements of a Wind Mitigation Inspection in Florida.
The roof’s condition.
When strong winds hit a home, the first line of defense is usually the roof covering. The roof covering of a home includes features like roof shingles and material of the roof. A certified inspector wants to know the age of the roof and the wind-resistance rating of the material used. They also check if the roof is up to code and the attachment to the roof deck.
Roof deck – roof structure attachment.
The roof deck and the roof structure are two separate structures attached together. An inspector examines the quality of this attachment as the plywood roof deck is usually attached to the roof with the help of nails or staples. Typically, the inspector looks for the length of the nails used and the spacing between each nail.
Roof – wall attachment.
The attachment between the roof truss and rafters to the walls of your home is extremely vital in determining the wind worthiness of a home. Hurricanes are notorious for blowing off roofs, which is why an inspector will check whether the roof is secured using hurricane clips instead of double or single wraps or not.
The shape, contours, height, and pitch of the roof play a vital role, depending on the wind patterns of your location. Hip roofs garner a different score compared to gabled roofs.
The walls of your home are just as important as the roof when strong winds hit. An inspector checks whether the walls are made from reinforced materials like steel and concrete or not. Using reinforced materials to build your walls can substantially raise your wind mitigation score.
The type of doors, windows, and other openings can determine how wind-resistant a home is. Typically, having hurricane-resistant shutters and hurricane-rated doors and windows can improve your wind mitigation scores significantly.
Secondary water barriers.
Modern homes make use of a secondary water barrier to protect you from any wind-driven rain that can easily make its way through the primary water barrier. Having a secondary water barrier can improve your home’s weather resistance as well as your wind mitigation scores.
Wind mitigation upgrades.
Your inspector may recommend a few upgrades in key areas of your home to improve its wind resistance. By adding these wind mitigation upgrades, your score can go up, offering greater benefits and discounts on your insurance premiums.
If you are still on the fence about whether to get a wind mitigation inspection in Florida, you must understand that a wind mitigation inspection report remains valid for three years. This means you can get a discount on your insurance premiums for three years in a row following one wind mitigation inspection. Furthermore, you recover the cost of an inspection by getting discounts on your insurance, which leads to a win-win situation for you and your home on both safety and financial fronts.