Retrofits are considered to be all encompassing. It will tie the roof to the wall, the foundation to the wall. The mid floor and subsequent floors will be anchored to the walls. Attic reinforcements will also be implemented. Bracing to the gable walls and chimneys. The chimneys are wrapped in steel bands and then anchored to bracing in the attic. Most times, additional shear walls will be added, in instances, shear walls will be made to the exterior or interior of the home. Most retrofits are done at the same time as a major remodel.

The Goal

The goal of any whole house Retrofit is to give the: 

  • best possible outcome, 
  • to protect life and property, 
  • provide the highest chance of survival and the 
  • least degree of injury and damage. 
  • the most time to escape if necessary

Plans are drawn by a professional structural engineer, experienced in seismic reinforcing in accordance with FEMA recommendations. We have worked with the best! Using tested methods, we will make the building much more resistant to destructive lateral and lift forces such as an earthquake or destructive wind scenario.

Instead of just hiding under the kitchen table, let’s make your house stronger than the table!

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Modern Knowledge

We apply modern knowledge to historic homes with new, stronger techniques and materials. 

We promise to faithfully implement the re-engineering and to carefully strengthen, anchor, brace, block and tie components together so that there is complete integrity throughout the structure from foundation to walls and floors, to roof and chimneys. We will utilize steel brackets, fasteners, straps and ties that were not available and were not installed during original construction prior to about 1979.

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(Steel Beam Insertion)

Modern Knowledge Cont.

We may also install high tech carbon fiber reinforcements and epoxies below the surface when needed. Shear walls may be added to gables in the attic and possibly to either the interior or exterior of the home. Because of the scope of the work, it is most economical to retrofit in conjunction with additions, major remodeling or reroofing projects. 

In an earthquake, houses don’t fall down until they fall apart!  Each component strengthens the other. The comprehensive, full house, seismic update or Retrofit is the best way to protect the loved ones within your home.

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Do you have bedrooms over the garage?

Soft story failure was responsible for nearly half of all homes that became uninhabitable in California’s Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989”… These homes are so dangerous that some other areas passed ordinances requiring all owners to retrofit but what reason more is there than the people living in those bedrooms over the ‘soft story’? We can install a special frame, ground bar and shear walls to avoid potential collapse during earth movement. It is an affordable retrofit especially compared to the potential damage and injuries.

For those who are interested, watch this video: Ross Stein at TEDx Bermuda calls soft story the most dangerous type of building.

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(Soft Story Homes)

Do you have questions about our services? Check out our frequently asked questions page for additional information!

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    Masonry is the most used material in the historical buildings of the European architectural heritage. The mechanical properties of these structures are often low, due to both the texture of the masonry and the poor quality of the mortar.

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