Florida Windstorm Inspection – Windstorm Inspection Online
Opening Protection Deficiency Reports
Most people, when they get a Florida Windstorm Inspection, are not completely sure whether every opening on their home is protected by tested and approved products that will enable them to obtain a valid discount on their insurance.
This makes perfect sense. There are a bewildering number of different kinds of opening protection, such as shutters, panel, hurricane fabric, and many types of impact-tested glass. There are many different types of tests that various products may (or may not) have passed, such as those of the Florida Building Code and those of Miami-Dade County. And there are a full array of stickers, stamps, and reams of paper documentation that can all help explain how each product was tested, and which must be documented or photographed to provide the proof needed to the insurance company.
“Did I Pass?”
So when a windstorm inspector inspects the openings on your home, there are some important things to consider besides the standard question: “Did I pass?”
Firstly, the answer to that question depends on a lot on your particular insurance carrier. Your insurance company’s rules, and how it treats homes built in the county and area that you live, can make a big difference. For instance, some insurance companies are only concerned with the openings in your home that contain glass. These carriers ignore the openings, such as solid doors or garage doors, which do not contain glass. Others are only concerned with the glass openings in some Florida counties, while in other counties such as Miami-Dade and Broward, they require all openings to be protected, even those without glass. Finally, some insurance companies, regardless of where the home is in Florida, require every single opening to be completely protected, regardless of whether glass is present.
So as you can see, “Did I pass?” really is asking “Did I meet the requirements of my current insurance company to receive the Opening Protection discount?”. Often at the time of the inspection, the inspector, the homeowner, or even the insurance agent will not yet know which insurance company the homeowner is going to select for their insurance needs. Without a carefully written deficiency report to assist, there will be no way to properly shop for the policy that’s right for you.
Didn’t Receive the Opening Protection Discount? Make Sure You Received an Accurate Opening Deficiency Report
As a result of the complexity described above, it’s extremely important that the inspector provides a very clear written report of the opening protection deficiencies on the home.
The Florida Windstorm Inspection and or Inspector needs to document what would be needed to fully protect all the glass on the home (in case that is the standard to which the insurance company will hold the home) and also what would be needed to protect every opening on the home (in case that is the standard required). Fail to receive this, and you may end up with a report that basically indicates that you won’t be getting this discount, but doesn’t tell you how to harden your home to receive it.
Don’t Settle for Less
The only way to properly give this kind of advice to the homeowner is for the inspector to take a detailed inventory of every opening on the home, and document the type of protection present if any. That way a clear roadmap can be provided to help the homeowner and insurance agent understand what needs to be done to meet whatever standard the insurance company is requiring.
Many inspectors will simply fill out the windstorm inspection form and hand it over. In these cases, no written Opening Deficiency Report is produced. Without a roadmap, the consumer can’t be sure what is needed to make sure that the next time they obtain the inspection, they will obtain the discount.
Don’t let this happen to you.
There are a lot of inspectors out there who are happy to fill out and hand over the Florida Windstorm Inspection form issued by Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation. Only use an inspection company that will both 1) provide you with a written deficiency report and 2) provide you with detailed post-inspection customer service, in case you or your agent need to discuss the report and the openings that need to be upgraded or protected. That way you’ll