If you live in Florida, which I assume you do if you've stumbled across my blog, then you are aware of the unique weather conditions we have to protect ourselves against, most notably Hurricanes.
What you may not know is there are specific construction practices and products we use in Florida to help us protect our homes against the dangers associated with those high winds, often referred to as WIND MITIGATION. Let's discuss what they are, and why this inspection is important.
What is a Wind Mitigation Inspection?
A wind mitigation inspection is an accounting, by a licensed professional, of the practices used in the construction of the roof and what, if any, protection openings like doors and windows have.
During thunderstorms, tropical storms and hurricanes a home experiences strong uplifting winds, and heavy rain that can damage the home. Your roof is the most important part of protecting the home from moisture and wind so the inspection mostly focuses on that.
When inspecting for wind mitigation we look at:
Construction Year: building codes are constantly changing so the year the home was built needs to be determined.
Roof Covering: What is the roof made out of and how old is it? Some protect better than others and the newer the better!
Roof Decking: What is the decking made out of, the type of nails used to secure the covering to it, and how far apart are those nails spaced?
Roof to Wall Attachment: How is the roof system physically secured to the exterior walls of the home?
Roof Shape: What is the roof shape and slope?
Secondary Water Resistance: What material is used between the decking and covering to protect against water intrusion?
Opening Protection: Is there additional protection for openings in the house such as shutters or impact rated glass?
Why Get a Wind Mitigation Inspection?
The most common reason for getting a wind mitigation inspection is to SAVE MONEY on your insurance premiums! Though there is no way to know exactly how much money you will save, as it varies from carrier to carrier, getting what is known as a "passing grade" requires the insurance provider to give insurance discounts.
The price of the Inspection is fairly inexpensive, roughly $100 from all inspectors, and usually pays for itself in the form of discounts on your insurance premiums.
Who does the inspection?
Though the inspection is usually done by a licensed home inspector, like Cosmos Inspections, it can be done by a licensed general contractor, building contractor, architect and engineer. The advantage of having a home inspector do the inspection is they can bundle all inspection necessary in one visit, including but not limited to:
4- point insurance inspection(Usually required for insurance purposes based age)
General inspection for the sale of the home.
What Do We, as The Inspectors, Need From You?
The inspection itself takes on average less than an hour to complete and Cosmos grantees the report same day. Since the wind mitigation inspection mostly focuses on your roof, we will need access to the exterior of the home to get photos of each side, we will need to be able to take pictures of each slope and we will need access to the interior of the attic.
Remember: without a wind mitigation inspection your insurance provider will likely assume you have the least wind resistance available and give you no credits towards discounts. Though there is no way to know what the discount will be, it is very likely you will end up saving.