Seismic Retrofitting Your LA Home

Retrofitting your LA home is a great way to help prevent expensive earthquake damage. It can also give you peace of mind, knowing that your house will be stronger if an earthquake strikes.

Seismic Retrofitting for Older Homes

Many older Los Angeles homes were built before building codes were in place, so these structures are often more susceptible to quake damage. This is because they were not properly bolted to their foundations with anchor bolts, which are necessary for the foundation to resist the force of a big earthquake.

The risk of shaking is also higher for houses with raised or “post and pier” foundations, hillside houses, and houses with living space over garages. These buildings tend to shift off their foundations, shifting the entire structure from the ground up and causing serious structural problems.

There are other risks associated with these types of older homes as well, and those can be addressed by retrofitting them. We offer foundation bolting, house bolting, and foundation bracing to strengthen these buildings and keep them from falling off their foundations during an earthquake.

We can do foundation bolting and house bolting on homes with retrofitt your LA home raised, post and pier, and hillside foundations. We also do a type of retrofitting called crawl space wall bracing, which is especially important for homes with raised foundations that have a crawl space (which is essentially an area underneath the first floor) and can shift off their foundation from shaking.

Our expert team has completed hundreds of structural projects and can handle yours, too!

Getting Started with a Seismic Retrofit

One of the first things you need to do is determine whether your house needs to be retrofitted or not. It is best to contact a structural engineer or licensed contractor who can identify your home’s vulnerabilities and recommend the appropriate type of retrofit. They can also guide you through the process.

You can even apply for a grant from the CEA’s EBB program to get part of the cost of your seismic retrofit covered!

The CEA will pay up to 50% of the total retrofit costs, and then pass those funds along to the owner for their rent increase. The program is for multi-family (5-10 units), soft-story apartment and condominium buildings that have not been previously retrofitted.

If you own a single-family home in a high hazard zone, then the law requires that you have your house retrofitted to protect it from earthquakes. This is known as a Certificate of Compliance and it usually costs a few hundred dollars, but you can also ask the seller to pay for it.

It is a good idea to get a couple of bids from different contractors and find a contractor that you can trust. This will ensure that your job gets done right, and you don’t end up with a contractor that is unqualified to do the work.

Depending on the type of retrofit, it can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $100,000. The more complicated the work is, the more money you may need to pay for it.

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