Los Angeles homeowners are well aware of the looming threat of seismic activity. However, there has been some debate over the best choice for securing your LA property. When it comes to earthquake safety, most homeowners consider two main options.
Discover the pros and cons of seismic retrofit versus earthquake insurance when it comes to fortifying your home against seismic activity.
Related: Earthquake Retrofit Overview
Doing Nothing Is Not An Option
When it comes to owning a home in the greater Los Angeles area, doing nothing to protect your property against earthquakes is the worst option.
Seismic retrofits strengthen the home in the event of seismic activity, while earthquake insurance ensures that your finances won’t be wiped out by the next big earthquake. However, failing to act is not a valid option.
When it comes to earthquakes in LA, it’s not a question of “if” but “when.” The next big quake could occur at any time, which means homeowners need to take steps to secure their property whether through retrofitting or insurance.
Any situation that involves the ground moving can damage a building and its foundation. That means that even a seemingly minor earthquake can disrupt the structural stability of your LA property.
Related: Earthquake Retrofit In Summer
Exploring Earthquake Insurance
Many home insurance policies don’t include coverage for earthquake damage. That’s where earthquake insurance comes in. Earthquake insurance covers the damages caused by seismic activity, which means that assistance is provided after issues arise. Some insurance companies will only provide earthquake insurance if a seismic retrofit occurs, while other homeowners only turn to earthquake insurance.
Earthquake insurance often has high premiums and high deductibles, which can make it an expensive option. Deductibles are typically 15% of the value of the building, while premiums can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars annually. It’s essential to keep in mind that earthquake insurance often excludes damages caused after earthquakes, such as shocks, tsunamis, explosions, and flooding.
Seismic Retrofitting 101
While earthquake insurance helps after damage occurs, earthquake retrofits aim to prevent damage in the first place. These highly beneficial retrofitting services secure the home so that it will not slide, buckle, or warp due to seismic activity. Seismic retrofits can have dramatic effects when it comes to preventing a home from buckling or collapsing during an earthquake. They can significantly minimize earthquake damage for homeowners.
Earthquake retrofitting is a preventative process that secures the structural stability of the home. Cripple wall bracing keeps the structure intact while foundation bolting secures the building safely in place. Contractors will assess the property for weak spots to ensure that the building is fully up to current earthquake codes. Many buildings in Los Angeles and the greater area require retrofits due to the prevalence of earthquakes and the destruction they cause.
Related: Soft Story Retrofit
Making The Right Choice
When it comes down to it, the homeowner can decide what is best for their property. However, the benefits of an earthquake retrofit are unparalleled. Though having earthquake insurance avoids financial ruin in the case of building destruction, earthquake retrofits often prevent the damage from occurring in the first place. This can both save lives and avoid extensive repair work.
Earthquake insurance is likely to be costly, but it will involve financial assistance for damage that occurs. On the other hand, earthquake retrofits prevent damage from occurring but can also be expensive.
Homeowners will ultimately have to decide if they are willing to rebuild their property if an earthquake destroys their structure. In many instances, preventative action is preferred when it comes to earthquake safety.
Related: Earthquake Retrofit Timing
Earthquake Safety in LA
Since earthquakes are a reality that Los Angeles homeowners must contend with, many turn to both seismic retrofits and earthquake insurance. Though either of these options is available on their own, purchasing both insurance and booking a retrofit is the best way to protect residents and guard assets. Earthquakes are an unfortunate reality for LA property owners, which means action must be taken.
Properties that are not adequately fortified against seismic activity run the risk of serious damage and even structural collapse. Additionally, residents in buildings that are not up to code have their safety jeopardized. Earthquake retrofitting is the best way to guarantee the protection of people and property value.
At California Foundation Works, we’re dedicated to making your home safe. Our experienced team services homes in the greater Los Angeles area to provide efficient, reliable, and thorough renovation, retrofit, and remodeling services. We value client communication so that we can help you achieve your dream home without ever compromising on quality.
Are you interested in booking home contracting work? Call today to get the conversation started!
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