Much of the time here on the coast, the weather is great.
But sometimes, and without much warning, we get wind able to damage even the sturdiest buildings.
It’s why insuring against that damage can get costly.
Wiley Blankenship with the Coastal Alabama Partnership says he moved to the Gulf Coast two years ago.
“I was shocked to find out just how much wind insurance was to us all…and I was thinking, this is nearly as much as my mortgage.”
Blankenship says that has changed, as recent amendments to state regulations have allowed homeowners to pay less. He says state law requires insurance companies to give you discounts if you alter or build your home to Fortified standards.
It’s all part of an awareness campaign involving the Partnership and the non-profit organization Smart Home America.
“It’s as simple as when you’re re-roofing your home, you can bring it to a certain standard using Fortification. If you’re building a home, you’re starting from scratch so you can definitely add fortification to it. It allows up to a 60% discount in what you’re paying.”
Those steps include having your home evaluated by a specialist who will make suggestions for improvements.
Savings could average around $300 a year and could increase with more fortification.
Blankenship says a number of meetings will be held in Baldwin County over the next few months regarding the regulations.
The first one is Tuesday, February 11 at 7:30 a.m. at the Bay Minette Civic Center.
“It’s all about economics. The faster you can recover, the faster you get back to work and repair your home. It makes for a stronger economy.”
Officials with the Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) outlines six simple steps that you can follow to strengthen your homes against wind damage. As a result, you also benefit from reduced insurance premium rates. More information is available on these six steps here.
Other town hall meetings are scheduled from 6-7:30 p.m. for the following dates: March 13 at Foley Civic Center; March 25, Loxley Civic Center; April 22, Baldwin County EMC Training Facility, Orange Beach; and May 1, Daphne High School’s Trojan Hall.