Homes that Withstand the Storm:

Your home is your haven, and when it comes to protecting it from the forces of nature, a fortified home stands as a beacon of resilience. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the fortified roof designation, exploring what it entails and how homeowners, especially those in high-wind or hurricane-prone zones, can benefit from the fortified program when installing a new roof or building a new home. 

Decoding the Fortified Roof Designation:

What Does “Fortified” Mean?

The fortified designation is a certification program developed by the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS). It sets rigorous construction standards to ensure that homes, especially in high-risk areas, are equipped with roofs capable of withstanding severe weather conditions.

A Three-Tier System:

The fortified program operates on a three-tier system – Fortified Roof, Fortified Silver, and Fortified Gold. Each tier represents an increasing level of resilience against natural elements.  To achieve a Fortified Silver status, you must complete both Fortified Roof and Fortified Silver requirements. To achieve a Fortified Gold status, you must complete all three fortified tiers (roof, silver, gold) by meeting specific criteria related to roofing materials, installation techniques, and overall structural integrity.

The Benefits of a Fortified Roof, Especially in High-Wind and Hurricane Zones:

Unrivaled Wind Resistance:

For homeowners in high-wind or hurricane-prone zones, a fortified roof provides unparalleled wind resistance. The use of advanced roofing materials, reinforced attachment methods, and continuous load path connections significantly reduce the risk of wind-induced damage, ensuring your roof stays put even in the fiercest storms.

Enhanced Water Intrusion Prevention:

Hurricanes often bring heavy rains, and a fortified roof is designed to keep your home dry. With improved underlayment, flashing, and sealing techniques, water intrusion risks are minimized, providing an extra layer of defense against leaks and water damage.

Impact Resistance Against Hail:

High-wind areas are often accompanied by hail, posing a threat to traditional roofs. Fortified roofs, however, are engineered to withstand hail impact, reducing the likelihood of structural damage and the need for costly repairs. 

Insurance Premium Reductions:

One of the tangible benefits of having a fortified roof is potential insurance premium reductions. Many insurance providers recognize the reduced risk of damage associated with fortified roofs, offering financial incentives to homeowners who invest in these resilient structures. Many insurance companies will 

Real-Life Resilience: A Story from Mexico Beach, FL

In the aftermath of Hurricane Michael in 2018, a testament to the strength of fortified roofs emerged in the community of Mexico Beach, FL. Homes that had achieved the coveted Fortified Gold Standard not only weathered the storm but stood tall amidst the devastation. While surrounding structures succumbed to the hurricane’s ferocity, these Fortified Gold homes remained standing, their overall structure, including their roofs we undisturbed by the powerful winds and relentless rain.

Residents of these homes shared stories of gratitude, emphasizing that their decision to invest in a fortified roof and the other structural requirements to achieve a fortified gold status. This decision safeguarded not only their property but also gave them peace of mind as hurricane Michael barreled toward the Florida coast. The resilience demonstrated by these gold standard, fortified homes underscored the effectiveness of the Fortified program in creating structures that can withstand the most challenging natural disasters.

How to Benefit from the Fortified Program:

Consult with Fortified Professionals:

Engage with roofing professionals certified by the IBHS Fortified program. These experts are well-versed in the stringent standards required for each tier and can guide you through the process, ensuring your new roof aligns with the fortified designation. 

Choose Fortified Materials:

Select roofing materials that meet or exceed the fortified program requirements. This may include impact-resistant shingles, reinforced underlayment, and enhanced flashing details.

Structural Reinforcement:

Work with contractors who understand the importance of structural reinforcement. A fortified roof is not just about the surface; it’s about ensuring every component of your roof system is built to withstand the rigors of severe weather.

Conclusion:

Investing in a fortified roof is an investment in the resilience and longevity of your home, particularly in high-wind or hurricane-prone zones. By adhering to the fortified program’s rigorous standards, homeowners can enjoy a heightened level of protection against the elements, potentially reducing the risk of damage and associated repair costs. When it’s time for a new roof, consider fortifying your home – because when the storm comes, your fortified roof will be well prepared, providing a shelter that endures nature’s toughest challenges. The stories from Mexico Beach, FL, serve as a powerful reminder that a fortified home isn’t just a feature; it’s a safeguard for your home and your peace of mind. At Abram Homes and Abram Roofing we are an IBHS Fortified Professional and can help you navigate the requirements and costs associated with each tier of the fortified building system.