If you live in the greater Los Angeles area, your home and your life could be at risk of severe damage from a devastating earthquake. The city is one of the most prone areas in California to major earthquakes and small, but frequent tremors. This is why it is crucial for your home to be able to withstand an earthquake.
Seismic Retrofitting in Los Angeles is an effective way to strengthen your home against the devastating effects of a major earthquake. It can save you tens of thousands of dollars in repair costs and help you protect your home and family from an expensive total loss.
Identify your House Type and Vulnerabilities
The first step in seismic retrofit Los Angeles is to determine what kind of home you have and what it needs. There are many different types of homes in the city and each may have its own unique risks that can be addressed with a proper retrofit.
For example, some older homes have a raised foundation that makes them vulnerable to shift off of their foundations in the event of a severe earthquake. These homes can be strengthened by adding steel plates or bolting the house to its foundation in order to reduce the risks of a serious earthquake.
Other older homes have a crawl space underneath the ground floor that is vulnerable to shifting off of its foundation during a major earthquake. These are called “cripple walls.”
If your home has a crawl space, it’s time to call a structural engineer or architect for advice on the best type of retrofitting. The experts at Alpha Structural will be able to assist you with this important task and provide you with a free estimate on your project.
Aside from the safety benefits, a seismic retrofit will also make your home more attractive to potential buyers. It can also reduce your insurance costs.
What You Need to Know About the Los Angeles City Ordinance for Soft Story Buildings
In 2015, the city of Los Angeles passed a new ordinance that requires the seismic retrofitting of buildings with soft-story construction that were built before 1980. The goal of the mandatory retrofit program is to reduce structural deficiencies by the most economical and feasible method.
This retrofit is necessary because multi-story buildings that have open front wall lines and a ground floor for tuck under parking have been known to perform poorly in past earthquakes. This type of structure is a common problem across the country and it should be addressed before the next major earthquake strikes.
What You Need to Know About CRMP
The California Earthquake Authority and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services formed a joint powers authority known as CRMP to administer mitigation programs. These include the Empowering Better Built (EBB) program that helps homeowners who have been selected to participate in a seismic retrofit program.
The EBB program is the first of its kind in the state, and it was created to offer incentives and grants for home owners who wish to undergo a seismic retrofit. It is designed to be a win-win for the property owner and the government. The EBB program also provides the homeowner with cost recovery options for the work done to the home. The homeowner is able to recover up to 50% of the cost of the work through a pass-through.