Wind Mitigation Inspections

 

Windstorm inspections are extremely important for home buyers and homeowners alike.  Wind Certifications from Silverman Inspections will save you substantial money and lower your insurance premium.  Florida Law qualifies wind-certified homeowners for credit, discounts, and differential rates on premiums.

Find out how much you can save on your wind insurance by doing a Wind Mitigation.

Inspection: Calculate Your Savings

Every home is covered with structures that are designed to shield it from elements and wind.  Good structures and roofing can protect the home and keep it intact for a lifetime.  Poor structures and roofing make the home vulnerable to powerful winds.

Safety for Your Family

Silverman Inspections will look at how certain areas of your home were designed and constructed.  Our inspectors will examine the reinforcements and exterior shell and determine whether or not it will withstand uplift and lateral force winds besides that, they will look at roof decks, roof design, tie-downs, and protection systems for doors and windows as well by carrying out a thorough inspection we'll be able to determine vulnerable areas and recommend the kinds of changes or reinforcements you should make to protect your home.

During the Wind Mitigation inspection, we will check the year that the roof was built and determine the structural integrity of the roof.

Our inspectors will look at several aspects such as roof shape, structure, decking type, and nailing pattern among others.

Preparing for a Wind Mitigation Inspection

One of our schedulers will contact you to arrange a time to perform the inspection. On average the inspection will take about one hour. We require that someone meet the inspector who is at least 18 years of age. The operator will have to ask about the attic access, shutters, impact-rated windows, and the roof.

Where is your attic entrance? The inspector will need to get into your attic. If the attic is in a closet then it is important to move any items and clothing out of the way. The inspector will make his best effort to keep the area clean but sometimes the attic access is covered with insulation and when the access is opened some insulation may fall down.  We ask that you move any items that could be damaged if this were to happen.  Also, we want to make sure the inspector is able to perform a complete inspection so that he may find every possible wind mitigation feature.  If you have a two-story house he needs to get into the attic on the second floor, not the first.

Do you have hurricane shutters or impact rated windows?  We need to document that you have them by taking photos.  In addition, we need to prove the make and model as well as the testing standards for the devices.  In order to get the maximum credit, we must be able to prove that every door, window, garage door, skylight, and glass block is either impact rated or has an impact-rated device that protects it.  If even one item is not protected the home will not qualify for credit.

How old is the roof?  If the roof was installed on or after March 1, 2002, and we can prove it by finding a building permit or documentation to prove what material was put on the roof, it will qualify for a mitigation credit.  Sometimes we can tell that the roof has been replaced but are unable to find any records to back up what we can see.  If that happens the home will not qualify for the credit.

The On-Site Inspection Process

During the wind mitigation inspection, an expert will evaluate the property’s mitigation features.  The visual inspection consists of two parts. Inspecting the exterior of the home and inspecting the attic.  The inspection can be performed in any order but typically our inspectors will follow the order listed here.

Starting at the front left corner of the house and working in a counterclockwise fashion the inspector will look at each window and door opening to determine if it is protected and if so determine the rating of protection.  Common protection ratings are Hurricane, Not Rated, and None.  Hurricane is the best rating and the only rating recognized for mitigation discounts currently.  Not rated typically would be a rating for a window that has a shutter but the shutter has not been tested.  The older clamshell awning shutters are a good example of a not rated protection device.

Also as the inspector walks around the property he is looking to see the shape of the roof.  If the roof qualifies as a hip roof it can receive a credit.  A hip roof must be 90% or more hip based upon the perimeter of the roof. Usually, we see homes almost receive credit as hip except for a connected flat roof on the back of the home.  We have to count any roof that covers living space or ties into the main roof.   While looking at the roof from the ground the inspector will note any skylight.  Skylights are also considered openings and must be protected as well.  When an inspector sees that the home has hurricane shutters usually the next step is to verify the rating.  

The hard part of the inspection starts when the inspector goes into your attic.  We like to say this is where he earns his paycheck.  In the attic, the inspector will use his tools to photograph the roof to wall connections and the roof deck attachment.

The roof structure attaches to the walls of the home thanks to the roof to wall connection.  A properly installed roof to wall connection can prevent the roof from separating from the home in a high wind situation.  Common names for these are hurricane clips, single wrap straps, and hurricane straps.  There are a couple of requirements that your home must have to get the credit.  They must be on every single truss, they cannot be corroded, they must have at least three nails in the truss and they cannot have more than a ½" gap.

The roof itself is usually installed on some type of decking, either plywood or planking.  The way this roof decking attaches to the trusses is the roof deck attachment.  The inspector will determine what type of decking the home has, the type of fasteners used to attach the decking, and the spacing between the fasteners.  The longer the nails are and the closer they are to each other, the more likely the decking is to stay attached during high winds.  In order to get credit for this, the home has to be able to resist certain amounts of wind pressure.