Wind Mitigation Inspections for Residential Properties
A wind mitigation inspection is an inspection that identifies all of the wind resistant features employed in the construction of a building (house, condo, apartment, commercial building, etc.).
What qualifies for a Windstorm Insurance Discount?
Existing houses have one or more of these wind resistive construction features and may qualify for some windstorm insurance mitigation discounts. In addition, houses built after 1994 in Miami-Dade or Broward Counties and houses built after 2002 in the rest of the state generally have many wind resistive construction features and will likely qualify for significant credits. A wind mitigation inspection will certify your homes existing construction features. We will provide you with a wind mitigation certification inspection report. The following items are building features that reduce wind damage for which many wind insurance companies offer wind premium discounts.
Natural variables include wind speed, wind height, ground surface features, and the properties of the air. WHAT WE LOOK FOR.......
Coverings, such as shingles that meet the FBC Requirements.
Roof decks that have been installed with large nails and close spacing.
Hurricane clips/straps that hold the roof structure to the walls
Secondary Water Resistance that prevents the roof from leaking if the roof covering is blown off in a windstorm.
Newly Constructed Homes built to the Florida Building Code since March 1, 2002
Homes built to the South Florida Building Code in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties after 1994.
Windstorm Insurance rates are reduced substancially with a Wind Mitigation Wind Inspection. A wind mitigation inspection verifies construction methods that create wind mitigation discounts based on those methods providing greater protection from wind hurricane damage. The inspection usually takes less than an hour and the savings is usually in the form of a check direct from your insurance company within 3-6 weeks.
With the "My Safe Home" program discontinued by the State of Florida, wind mitigation inspections should only be conducted by Licensed Building Contractors or Architects Certified by the State of Florida. Buyer should beware of prices that are simply too cheap for a licensed professional to conduct. The "My Safe Home" program was terminated in August of 2008.
All of the following structure types qualify for Wind Mitigation Inspections:
Single Family Homes
Discounts Occur when Dwelling Structures have Elements that Minimize Damage from High Wind Events like Tropical Storms and Hurricanes. They include:
Actual Roof Shape
Reinforced Roof Decking
Roof Shingle, metal Attachment Method
(tile and flat roof products are not included on the wind mitigation form due to question 2 option A.
(This does not mean you will not get a discount, it is up to your carrier)
Shutter Protection Over Your Windows
Hurricane Straps and/or Hurricane Clips
Full or Partial Impact Resistant Glazing on Windows
Other Wind Resilient Construction Techniques...
According to Florida Statute 627.0629, ALL insurance companies are required to offer Florida homeowners "discounts, credits, or other rate differentials..." for particular construction techniques that help to reduce wind damage caused by hurricanes, tropical storms and other windstorms related claims. A Better Choice Home Inspection is a State Certified Inspector for Wind Mitigation anaylsis for all property owners in the State of Florida. We provide this valuable service in an effort to reduce the cost of your homeowners insurance rates. Additionally, we are pleased to have the opportunity to educate you about the potential strengths and weaknesses of your properties wind resistive features and how to best protect your investment.
Wind Mitigation Discounts
Wind Mitigation discounts are applied towards the windstorm portion of your total insurance premium. Depending on where you are located in Florida, the windstorm portion is between 15% and 70% of the total premium. Premium determination is very complex and actual dollar discounts are not calculated here. For exact quotes, you must contact your insurance agent or the individual insurance company in question. The three main factors for wind mitigation discounts include: The number of wind resistive construction features present on your condo or home - The more wind resistive features you have, the higher the total discount will be for your property. The discounts can be as high as 30% or more of the wind portion of the insurance premium.
The location of your condo or home - Discounted wind insurance rates are adjusted according to where your property is located within the state. If your wind insurance rates are high, then the percentage discounts will be greater for a condo or house in a high rate area versus the same condo or house in a lower rate area. The value of your condo or home - High value condos or homes have higher premiums. Therefore, the value of the discounts will increase with the value of the condo or home.
Will I Qualify For Wind Mitigation Discounts?
Wind mitigation discounts are justified because stronger, more wind-resistive houses have lower windstorm losses. Lower windstorm losses equal reduced costs to insurance companies that are then passed on to the consumer. Many homeowners have taken advantage of the insurance discount incentive and strengthened their existing condo or home using the strongest options in the Florida Building Code. The discounted insurance rates in Florida apply to both existing construction (condos and homes built prior to 2002) and new construction built to the new statewide Florida Building Code (FBC).
The Following Items are Building Features that Reduce Wind Damage:
Shingles or other roof coverings that meet the Florida Building Code requirements
Roof decking that has been installed with larger nails or screws with closer spacing
Hurricane clips and/or straps that secure the roof structure to the supporting walls
Full or partial protection of windows and glass doors with impact resistant glazing or other protection methods.
Secondary water resistance barrier that prevents the roof from leaking if the shingles are blown off in a windstorm
Newer homes and condominiums built since the new code requiring these features have been enacted.