Wind mitigation is the application of the recommendations that result from a wind mitigation inspection report. It is the process of adding features to a home to increase its resistance to damage from wind storms. A wind mitigation inspection, sometimes called a windstorm inspection, is a visual inspection of your home, its features, and the surrounding area to estimate how much damage your home could experience during an intense windstorm. The resulting report can have multiple benefits for a homeowner.

The most important benefit is safety preparedness for wind storms like cyclones, hurricanes, and tornadoes, so let’s discuss wind.

A tropical cyclone is a low-pressure rotating weather system that occurs on water and can move onto land. When it exceeds 39 mph, it becomes a tropical storm. When the cyclone’s maximum sustained winds exceed 74 mph, it is considered a (category 1) hurricane. A Category 5 hurricane exceeds 155 mph. The states most commonly impacted by hurricanes are Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and South and North Carolina.

Damaging winds are also known as straight-line winds. They exceed 50 – 60 mph and are the result of downdraft thunderstorms. Tornados are rotating, violently windy columns of air that descend from thunderstorms to the ground. States that see the most tornadoes each year are Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, Alabama, Mississippi, Illinois, and Iowa, but they can occur anywhere, any time of year. A home that can withstand a natural disaster like a hurricane or storm can help any homeowner sleep better.

A wind mitigation inspection can also give you an idea of what cost to protect your home and your investment with insurance. Generally, a standard home insurance policy will cover some loss due to natural disasters like tornadoes and hurricanes, but not always. This is especially true in high-risk coastal regions. In Florida, wind-damage risk accounts for 15-70 percent of the premiums. Deductibles can be as high as $20,000 – wind mitigation can decrease insurance premiums.

If you are looking at purchasing a home in a high-risk area, your lender will require an additional, specialized policy known as Windstorm Insurance.

Wind mitigation can also increase your home’s value. Real estate has historically been a strong market to invest in and diversify your portfolio but to maximize the returns, you need to be sure the investment is sound. Sound house equals sound investment.

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