Florida’s hurricane season is coming to a close for this year, but that doesn’t mean we’ve seen the last of the inclement weather. Damaging winds and rainfall continue to be possible long after the official season ends.
Constantly berated by the elements, a roof needs to be properly maintained and protected from winter weather, so it doesn’t get added to a list of repair projects.
As winter approaches, a licensed home inspection professional could figure out where the weak points are for a property, and offer proactive advice for preparing for any upcoming storms. In addition to spotting any damage, homeowners should take this step so their houses are in the best possible shape as the seasons shift.
No matter where your home is located, winter weather can take on a variety of forms, and the smartest homeowners take steps to get ready. Even if your home is right here in Florida, and snow is all but out of the question, rain, hail and winds can all wreak havoc on your roof, and the rest of your home for that matter, leaving you wishing you’d had some idea as to what could have been done to protect your property.
Any home that isn’t properly prepared when severe weather does strike could get badly damaged, and for owners, it might feel like they are never as ready as they could be – especially living in a relatively warm climate where the problems are seemingly few and far between. This sense of false security could lead you down a primrose path, subject you and your family to injury and leave your wallet empty.
Just this week, gale force winds pummeled the coastline, caused by an unforeseen drop in the jet stream, and without warning, homes were damaged across the area. Some of these damaged properties could have been better protected with a simple roof inspection from Home Inspections by Neil.
The average homeowner has no idea how the geometry of your roof can affect its ability to withstand high winds. Flat roofs don’t create a lot of uplift. Gable roofs can be a week point if not properly braced. Hip roofs provide a shape with no gables that many find more visually pleasing.
Armed with this knowledge, homeowners can be primed when the storms come and danger is most likely to strike.
But, preparedness is only one of the benefits to having your home inspected before the storm season and cold weather arrives. The other major benefit to having your roof checked out is SAVING MONEY ON YOUR HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE.
In recent years the insurance companies have re-evaluated how they approach the process of determining the premiums they charge for your insurance. Basically they look at your homes location and assume the worst case scenario regarding the structural features of your home that protect it from being damaged by high winds, thus resulting in high premiums.
But you have the right to have a Wind Mitigation Inspection to determine if the structural features of your home will decrease the assumed risk of the insurance company. For each mitigation feature that makes your home stronger the insurance company must reduce your premium by certain percentages.
Just a few of the features Neil Olshefski and his crew of professionals inspect and document on your behalf are:
The Age and Building Code of Roof Covering Installation
An examination is done of available permits and material documentation. Proper permitting of the installation will help reduce your costs.
The Type and Size Fasteners Used to Attach Roof Decking
While in the attic we look to find samples of the nails or staples used to attach the roof decking to the trusses.
Roof to Wall Attachment
There are several types of hardware and methods typically used to attach the roof to the walls. The stronger the method, the better for you.
Roof Geometry (see above)
Secondary Water Resistance
The insurance companies give tremendous discounts for the SWR feature. It is well worth the investment.
Storm panels or shutters help to protect against wind borne debris breaking through windows, skylights and doors. It is not as much the rain but the internal pressure created by a broken window that causes the greatest damage.
For more information about these and other inspection packages that can save you money and peace of mind, contact Home Inspections by Neil through the email form located here or call them directly at (386) 795-1843.