The chances of an earthquake happening in California is very high. Seismologists say that the stress along the San Andreas fault has been building up since the mid-1800’s. What can you do to prepare yourself so that you can minimize any damage that occurs?
Benefits of a Retrofit
It’s true that a retrofit is an investment. However, that investment will pay off in numerous ways, both in safety and in personal property. Here are some of the most important benefits that you’ll experience:
- Retrofitting your apartment building will save lives.
- The buyer of your property will discount the cost of the retrofit from the purchase price at an unfavorable rate.
- Retrofitting can help reduce owners’ liability for injuries or death because of an earthquake.
- Some insurance companies will offer more favorable options for those people that have decided to get an apartment building retrofit.
- Construction costs will rise with the demand for retrofits.
- You can get special property financing for your retrofit.
The New Frontier
In 2017 the LA Times wrote an article about earthquake safety and retrofitting, calling it the New Frontier. The frontier was led by the city council and they talked about approving an ordinance that would require vulnerable buildings to be improved.
All of these buildings would go through an evaluation and then would be told if they needed an apartment building retrofit or not. In 2017 this was simply a proposal, but now it’s actually become a law that soft story, steel moment frame concrete tilt-ups, non-ductile concrete, and unreinforced masonry buildings would ALL have to go through the evaluation and do a retrofit if deemed necessary.
Steps to Getting a Retrofit for Your Apartment Building
Obviously, if you’ve never been involved in an apartment building retrofit you might have questions about how this process works. It’s really intended to make it as simple as possible for a building owner.
- Consultation: When you first call a retrofit company, they will assign their experts to the project, talk about the different retrofit options available, and of course give you an estimate for this project.
- Engineer Evaluation: Next you will receive an engineer report for the existing structure OR a blueprint and drawings to use for a building that will be constructed in the near future.
- Drawing Approvals and Permits: Next, they will provide drawings for the permit to submit all the necessary documents and get approval for the build.
- Construction: The last step in an apartment building retrofit is the construction. Within a pretty short period of time, your plans will be implemented for the retrofit of the building.
If you need an apartment building retrofit contact Saunders Seismic today for more information.