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Address: 700 N. Devilliers, Pensacola, FL 32501 - Phone: (850) 696-7656 - info@pars-co.net - License #: CGC1512307

ParsCo Inspections and the Fortified Home Program

Posted on by ParsCo Construction

The Fortified Homes program was created by the Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS). The IBHS is an initiative of the insurance industry to reduce deaths, injuries, property damage, economic losses, and human suffering caused by natural disasters.

The Fortified program specifies construction and design guidelines to enable homes to increase their resistance to high winds, and flooding. The program heralds a new way to build and sell homes in disaster-prone areas, as safety-conscious consumers drive the market for hazard-resistant residences.

If you are considering building a home or looking for insurance rate incentives while remodeling a home, considering the Fortified Home criteria is a must.  Not only does it protect your home from natural disasters, it provides you a financial incentive when it comes to insurance rates. 

In order to qualify as a Fortified Home, a ParsCo inspector must determine whether your home meets the following criteria:

Windstorm Protection Checklist

Building Envelope Protection:

All entry doors, windows, skylights, patio doors and garage doors must be tested and certified to meet impact resistance and pressure standards. If the units themselves are not tested, then they must be protected by a protection system (storm shutter) that meets the impact resistance standards. Systems must be compliant with at least one of the following:

·                 ASTM E1996

·                 SSTD-12

·                 Miami-Dade County protocol A 201

Adequate Load Path:

The load path from the roof to the foundation of the home must be readily verifiable. This includes:

·                 Hurricane straps or other hardware that connect the roof to the walls installed per manufacturer’s recommendations, and connecting every rafter or truss to its support wall.

·                 Concrete block walls must be vertically reinforced (tie column) every four feet and at all corners and ends of openings. Horizontal reinforcement is required at the top of each masonry wall segment (bond beam).

·                 Inter-story details must be strapped to provide a load path from the upper story to the lower story.

·                 Wall-to-foundation connection a minimum of once every four feet and at all corners and wall openings.

·                 Securely anchored connections for exterior structures such as carports and porches that attach to the main structure of your home.

Roof Construction:

The roof framing, sheathing, and covering all must be constructed to resist wind loads and wind effects. This includes:

·                 Gable end roof framing must be braced back to the interior portions of the roof and ceiling structure (both top and bottom of trusses)

·                 Roof deck must be at least 19/32" thick and fastened to roof frame with minimum 8d ring shank nails @ 6" on center throughout the panels and 4" on center on the last truss or rafter at the gable end of a home.

·                 All roof deck joints must be sealed by a self-adhering polymer modified bitumen-roofing tape to provide a secondary moisture barrier (these materials are also referred to as "flexible flashing"). Products must be installed per the manufacturer’s recommendations. Roofing felt and similar paper-based products do not qualify as joint sealant.

·                 A minimum of 30# equivalent of roofing felt must be used as underlayment for the roof covering.

·                 Roof covering must be certified for use in hurricane regions (i.e. Miami-Dade approved or similar) and installed per manufacturer’s recommendations. Only a single layer of covering is permitted.

This checklist is a summary of the inspection form. Your ParsCo Fortified inspector will have the complete version.

Flood Protection Checklist:

If your home is not in a Special Flood Hazard Area, you do not need to meet any of the flood criteria. Start by checking with your community floodplain management official, mortgage lender, or insurer to find out whether your home is located in a flood zone. If a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) indicates that your home is in flood zone A, AE, A1-A30, AH, AO, AR, V, VE, or V1-V30, then the home is in a Special Flood Hazard Area.

·                 Next, find out from your local floodplain management official the base flood elevation (BFE) for your property. For Zone AO, use the depth of flooding shown on the FIRM.

·                 Consult your community’s records or your property survey for the elevation of your home’s lowest floor. If the community records and the property survey do not indicate the elevation of the lowest floor, you will need to hire a licensed surveyor to determine it. The lowest floor is the lowest enclosed area (including basement).

·                 Provide the flood zone, the BFE, and the elevation of the lowest floor to your ParsCo inspector who will verify the information and complete the certification checklist. Before constructing or renovating your home, consult your local building and floodplain management officials regarding local codes and ordinances.

This checklist is a summary of the inspection form. Your ParsCo Fortified inspector will have the complete version.

For more information on the Fortified Home Program call ParsCo at 850-776-6265 or email us at info@pars-co.net

ParsCo, LLC

P.O. Box 12862

Pensacola, FL 32591


Visit us on the web at www.pars-co.net


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