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Best Time of Year to Undergo Earthquake Retrofitting

Best Time of Year to Undergo Earthquake Retrofitting

Most people are aware that earthquake tremors are on the rise, especially on the West Coast. Even though we have all heard the prediction that the next Big One will happen within the next 20-30 years, it is very easy to believe that “the Big One won’t happen here.” This attitude is even widespread along the major fault lines in California, and in other areas that often experience more frequent seismic tremors. Many commercial property owners actively make the decision not to purchase earthquake insurance for their properties, however many owners couldn’t get the insurance even if they wanted it. In many cases, the overall condition of their building or the roof does not meet the insurance company’s standards. For those who live in areas that experience regular earthquake activity, especially near those fault lines in California, the idea that many buildings are not safe enough to meet insurance standards should cause great concern. The catastrophic damage experienced in other countries, that we have seen several times in the news in recent years, could very easily happen here in the United States.

Earthquake retrofitting buildings on the West Coast, especially on California, is one of the best ways to strengthen the structural integrity of a property before an earthquake disaster occurs. When it comes to responsible safety preparations, the sooner you schedule an earthquake retrofit evaluation and the necessary work to be done, the better chance your building will stand up to the stress of a major earthquake. Understandably, most commercial building owners and property managers would like to be able to choose the best time to undergo major structural work, preferably waiting until their property is in between tenants and vacant. While a vacant building is certainly the best setting for completing major renovation and building improvement, you really should not wait until when that time comes. The best case scenario is to get the evaluation and work completed as soon as possible. If you choose a company that is experienced with working in occupied spaces, you can begin the work fairly quickly, thus protecting your building from thousands of dollar of potential damages.

When was the last time anyone inspected your property’s roof? Re-roofing may only be necessary once every 10-20 years. However, if your building needs a new roof or extensive roof repair, including an earthquake retrofit into the property maintenance project will ensure that the time and money spent is effective in creating a safer work environment for your tenants and lessens the possibility of extensive damage when the “Big One” strikes. This is because access to complete the retrofit work is performed above the roof deck. Combining these two building improvements can provide a substantial cost savings. Many property managers and building owners choose to do this work in the summer; it makes sense to tackle capital improvement and maintenance projects when the chance of rain is typically less and the the days are longer.

If you decide to combine a roof replacement with an earthquake retrofit, you will want to put together a strong team of experienced contractors who can work together effectively and efficiently. Coordination is key on such a large project and communication between the property manager, tenants and the contractors is critical. Hiring an experienced retrofit contractor is absolutely essential.

In order to save money, it may be tempting to hire a general contractor to complete an earthquake retrofitting of your building, including any necessary roof repair or maintenance. Many general contractors do not have much, if any, specific earthquake retrofitting experience. Be sure to look for experienced, professional contractors specializing in commercial earthquake retrofitting to handle the important job of protecting your property from an earthquake.

As a property owner or manager, you have the responsibility to promote the safety and security of your commercial property, including the tenants, machinery and inventory. Saunders Commercial Seismic Retrofit can provide a comprehensive and multifaceted evaluation of your building. In addition, Saunders will provide a retrofit insurance quote based on present and after-retrofitting values so you can easily calculate your Return on Investment. If you have questions about earthquake preparedness or want to know what is the best time to retrofit your building from earthquakes, call Saunders Commercial Seismic Retrofit today!

Southern California Office

(949) 646-0034

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