If you are someone new to Florida or just have not been aware of the steps recommended to reduce damage from Hurricanes - then this link below is a great website to help one understand why insurance companies are interested in the Wind Mitigation reports you have paid me to produce. This web site also goes beyond the basics to discuss how to guard against hour after hour of wind blow water. Generally homes built before 2002 need a Uniform Wind Mitigation Verification Form - filled out by a qualified inspector such as myself
A older home, if it was built or retrofitted to higher standards, can get an insurance rate reduction for such upgrades as the following:
1. Decreasing the nail spacing from 12" to 6" for the nails that fasten the roof sheathing panels to the framing. The new nails are also upgraded to better holding #8 ring shank. Roof should be upgraded when you re-roof a house - and most insurance companies will not insure your home if you have an asphalt shingle roof that is over 20 years old unless you re-roof. Newer homes usually have the 6" nail spacing and use 2 1/2" long #8 nails to fasten the roof sheathing to the framing.
2. Upgrading the metal clips that connect the roof framing to the wall framing. Most roofs are connected with clips that have 3 nails - the upgrade would be changing to a metal strap that wraps over the top of the roof framing member and is attached on both sides with 3 nails on each side of the member.
3. Roof Geometry can help reduce your premiums - If the house you are interested in purchasing has a Hip roof you will get an insurance reduction, gables are very popular right now and if only 10% of your roof is a gable, and the rest of the roof is hipped - insurance companies will rate this as a hipped roof.
4. Secondary Water Resistance Protection - this is nicknamed SWR and is a stick on membrane, or foam that is attached to the roof sheathing and will be under the roofing. This is a supplemental means to protect the house from water intrusion in the event of roof covering loss, and also a way to reduce your insurance bill.
5. We have seen homes and condos with shutters over their windows and doors, this is what the insurance companies call Opening Protection. All openings in the house - that is all doors, all garage doors, all windows, all glass block, and all skylights - are protected from wind blow debris damage. Impact resistant coverings vary in their protection but the top of the line are designed to resist what the testers of these systems call a 9 pound missile.