By law, insurance providers have to offer credits off of a homeowner’s insurance premium for guarding their home against wind damage. These credits are referred to as Wind Mitigation Credits. Florida wind mitigation requirements must be fulfilled during a certified inspection prior to discounts being applied.
Florida Wind Mitigation Requirements
In the state of Florida, a single hurricane can cause billions of dollars in damage. Hurricane Irma generated wind speeds up to 90 mph in Miami and 142 mph in Naples, with estimated damages of more than $100 billion. Florida wind mitigation requirements have improved since the damage caused by Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Developers modified the structural design of homes to better withstand high winds caused by strong storms or hurricanes.
Unlike other standard inspections, this one is entirely optional. However, it is highly recommended. The savings received as a result of the wind mitigation inspection are typically worth the expense. Often, some homeowners don’t have to make any additional changes and still receive a credit.
Inspectors typically check for wind-related construction features that could possibly reduce a portion of the homeowner’s insurance premium. These include:
- Roof covering
- Roof-to-wall connections (areas where the exterior walls of home connect to roof)
- Roof-deck attachments (underside of the roof that is visible in the attic)
- Roof geometry (shape of the roof)
- Secondary water resistance (SWR)
- Opening protection (windows and other openings)
- Building construction
- Year built (homes build after 2002 are built to meet updated safety codes)
It’s a good idea to prepare your home to meet the Florida wind mitigation requirements because it can save you money in the long-term. In addition, by outfitting your home against strong winds from severe storms, you significantly reduce the risk of danger and damage.
The roof deck should be sealed to prevent water intrusion that could occur if the roof shingles blow away in a severe storm or hurricane. Water should not be able to penetrate the layer between the structure and insulating layer of the roof.
Roof to Wall Anchoring
It is essential to ensure the home’s outer structure can withstand the force of strong winds. Secure the home’s walls to the roof and foundation to strengthen the structure.
Window and Door Coverings
It is recommended to install hurricane-rated doors and garage doors. These are designed to withstand dangerous flying debris that might otherwise cause significant damage. Homeowners can also install bracing on current garage doors.
To protect your home’s windows from strong wind and debris, there are a few available options. High impact, shatterproof windows are an effective option. Storm shutters vary in type, style, and even color. It’s an investment in your home, so it’s important to pick the type that protects it from wind damage the best.
Do I Qualify for Wind Mitigation Discounts?
E&L Insurance can recommend a certified inspector to determine if your home qualifies for any wind mitigation discounts. If you require more information about Florida wind mitigation requirements, contact our E&L Insurance by calling (888) 700-4049, today!