South Florida homeowners are entitled to insurance discounts if their homes are able to withstand major windstorms and hurricanes. That discount is not extended, however, unless the home passes a Certified Wind Mitigation Inspection.
This inspection combines a general roof inspection with a detailed assessment of the type of roof, reinforcement techniques, and other specifics. Your inspector will also consider other wind mitigation features of your home such as impact-resistant window glazing, shutters, and hurricane straps or clips.
Wind mitigation discounts are justified for homeowners in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and other South Florida communities because stronger, more wind-resistive houses incur fewer windstorm losses. Fewer windstorm losses translate to reduced costs to insurance companies that are then passed on to the consumer.
Attic access is required to verify certain mitigation features. Ensure that your attic is accessible before the inspector arrives. If the inspector cannot access your attic, you may not be eligible for discounts for:
You can save money with a Wind Mitigation Inspection. Florida law Statute 627.0629 requires insurance companies to offer homeowners unprecedented savings on their home insurance premiums. In order to qualify, homeowners must receive a State Certified home Wind Mitigation Inspection.
When you are facing a tight deadline or rushing to close a real-estate deal, we can do same-day inspections to expedite the process.
Wind mitigation inspections are in place to evaluate a home’s construction and assess its potential resistance to forces brought by hurricanes and other categories of windstorms. The inspection verifies type of roof, roof-to-wall connections (clips, straps, toenail, single or double wraps, etc.), braced gable ends, secondary water barriers, reinforced wall construction, and openings (shutters, impact-resistant windows, and doors; including garage) protection.
In Florida, homeowners can benefit from reduced insurance premiums by passing one of these wind mitigation inspections. Following Hurricane Andrew, Florida passed a law requiring insurance companies to offer their customers discounts and credits for existing building features and home improvements that reduce damage and losses from the wind. Lenders in Florida require homeowners to carry windstorm insurance in order to be approved for a mortgage. Insurers may not provide windstorm insurance to homes that are vulnerable to wind damage.
Garage Doors: These commonly fail during windstorms because of inadequate door-track strength and mounting systems, as well as flimsy metal panels. To protect a garage door from wind damage, the following features are advised:
Home Opening Protection: Glass doors and windows should be replaced with impact-resistant glass. They should be structurally attached to the building in order to prevent the entire window from popping out of its frame. Sliding glass doors are especially vulnerable to flying debris due to their large expanse. Once an opening is created during a windstorm, the pressure within the house can rise high enough to cause the roof to fail in areas of low pressure.
Roof Covering: There are many kinds of roof covering materials, and some resist wind damage better than others. The most common roof covering materials in Florida are composition shingles and tiles. A key factor in roof covering performance is the method of attachment of the roof covering material to the roof deck. Nails, not staples, should be used to fasten these materials.
Roof Shape: The "Roof Shape" refers to the geometry of the roof, not the wear-and-tear status or type of roof covering. The end-walls of gable roofs extend vertically to the sloping roofline. These gable end-walls, if not properly built or braced, have been known to fail outward due to the negative suctions on the wall. Additionally, field testing has shown that hip roofs receive up to 40% less pressure from wind than gable roofs.
Roof Deck Attachment: According to insurance claim data, a house becomes a major loss once the roof deck fails, even partially. The most common roof deck types are plywood and OSB. The most important feature of the roof deck by far is the attachment to the framing compared to the deck’s thickness.
The following building techniques can help prevent wind damage:
Roof-to-Wall Connections: This connection is a critical safeguard that keeps the roof attached to the building and acts to transfer the uplift loads into the vertical walls. This connection is crucial to the performance of the building due to the large negative pressures acting on the roof. Proper installation is essential to connector performance.
Secondary Water Resistance: This is a layer of protection that shields the home in the event that the roof covering fails. It will reduce leakage if the shingles are blown off. A secondary water barrier is relatively rare in homes. It is usually only found in very modern custom homes. The two most common types are:
Same Day Inspection provides a comprehensive collection of inspection services, including wind mitigation inspections, for our customers throughout South Florida. Upon request, same-day inspections are available. We also provide air quality testing, formaldehyde testing, commercial inspections, home inspections, mold testing, termite inspections and more. When you need our services, give us a call at 954-908-6862 or Contact Us online.