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The Best Time for Retrofitting a California Building

The Best Time for Retrofitting a California Building

Most California residents are aware of the many seismic disturbances that happen regularly throughout the state, small tremors that occur at any time of the day or night.  Even though we feel the earth moving and shaking, it’s easy to pretend that “the BIG ONE won’t happen here.”  This attitude is common even along the major fault lines in California and in areas that frequently experience seismic tremors.  Experts predict that the next “BIG ONE” is likely to occur sometime in the next twenty to thirty years, yet the majority of commercial building owners do not to carry earthquake insurance for their properties.  Earthquake insurance may just be too expensive.  In fact, many commercial property owners couldn’t get insurance even if they wanted to because their building’s PML rating is too high.  Often, the overall condition of their building, or even just the roof, does not meet the insurance company’s standards.  Sadly, the reality is that the catastrophic damage experienced in other countries in recent years could very easily happen here in the United States, especially along the fault lines in California.

Scheduling an inspection and completing a seismic retrofit on any commercial building located in California is a great way to strengthen the structural integrity of a property before a major disaster happens. “There’s no time like the present” rings true when it comes to responsible safety preparations.  In most cases, commercial property owners and property managers prefer to wait and choose the best time to schedule major maintenance and retrofitting projects.  Of course, scheduling a seismic retrofit when a property is vacant would be the ideal setting for major renovation and building improvement, but in most cases, that is the exception, not the rule. The next best solution is to do it as soon as possible.  By choosing a company that is experienced and systematic with working in occupied spaces, you can protect your building from many thousands of dollars of potentially devastating damages, while providing a safer environment for your tenants.  Unless you know when the “BIG ONE” will happen, it makes sense to consider a seismic retrofit in the very near future.

Commercial property owners should replace the roof of their building on a regular basis (usually every 15-20 years), although the roof should be inspected for damage more frequently.  If your building needs a new roof or extensive roof repair, it is typically a great time as well to undergo a more thorough seismic retrofitting process.  Access to complete the seismic retrofit work is performed above the roof deck, therefore combining these two building improvements can provide a major cost savings.

When property owners decide to combine a roof replacement with a seismic retrofit, they will need to hire a team of specialized contractors who can work together efficiently and effectively. It goes without saying that without proper coordination between the contractors, the property management and the tenants, an open roof could be exposed to the elements longer than necessary and the day-to-day business could be negatively impacted.  Hiring an experienced seismic retrofit contractor is a critical component to the successful completion of this type of capital improvement/maintenance project.

Saunders Commercial Seismic Retrofit can provide a thorough and multi-faceted inspection of any commercial building. Their team of experienced professionals understand that property owners have a responsibility to promote the safety and security of their commercial property, including its occupants, machinery and inventory. Saunders Commercial Seismic Retrofit provides a retrofit insurance quote based on present and after-retrofitting values so you can quickly calculate your Return on Investment.  If you have questions about seismic retrofitting or want to know more about strengthening commercial buildings in California against potential damages from future earthquakes, call Saunders Commercial Seismic Retrofit today!

Southern California Office

(949) 646-0034

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