Hurricane is perhaps one of the most destructive natural disasters so far. Every year, it causes billions of dollars in damage. Thousands of people causalities occur every year and destroy hundreds of homes, altering the lives of thousands of people forever. The coastal cities are more prone to the damage being posed by the hurricane. This has compelled intelligent minds to develop an effective solution to protect their homes and lives against hurricanes. As a result, architects and home builders focus on creating hurricane-resistant home designs.
Hurricane resistant home
The latest advancement in the construction industry has produced buildings that can withstand life-threatening events like a hurricane, fire outbreaks, flooding from rain, and flying debris. Generally, materials used in constructing such homes are similar, but the technique to build the homes is different. In order to make the building hurricane-proof, one of the first things professionals do is design the structures that withstand the natural force created by the hurricane. Architects use an aerodynamic design that helps to disperse the force and instantly divert the pressure created by the hurricane. At the same time, a strong network of connectors, straps, reinforced trusses, reinforcements, and mold-resistant components secure the entire building, preventing penetration from rain, wind, and storm debris.
Following are the essential features of hurricane-resistant homes;
Raise it up
In hurricane-prone areas, homes are supposed to build above expected stormwater levels. This is one of the lessons learned from the past hurricane events. It is indeed too challenging to raise the level of the existing home. Because along with it, the entire HVAC, electrical, and telecommunication system need to be raised above flood-plain level. But if you are looking forward to constructing a newly hurricane-resistant home, then it is a smart move. All you need to do is approach the reputed architects having expertise in creating a hurricane-resistant home design.
Tie it down
It is the second most essential feature the ideal hurricane-resistant homes have. Protecting a building roof is a crucial step in hurricane events. It is a critical step not because it protects occupants and belongings but it is may create upward stress by pressure created by the hurricane around the building. This is why architects need to design the roof in such a way to divert the wind’s pressure away from the roofs and walls, and toward the foundation of the home. Various products are used to make the roofs and walls stronger to withstand high winds, including steel, metal tie-down straps, hurricane roof chips, and plates. These upgrades are inexpensive and considered stronger enough to protect the walls and roofs from the hurricane. Plus, they prevent any wind, water, and debris penetration.
Secure the sides
The ultimate goal is to build walls that prove to be resilient to extreme weather conditions without shattering and keeping the moisture and debris out. This also results in energy efficiency. Insulated concrete forms are among the most popular building materials used for hurricane-resistant homes in hurricane-prone areas. These are basically interlocking blocks of plastic insulating panels filled with concrete on-site. These blocks form a solid and water-resistant structure, providing insulation and fire resistance. At some places, home builders use structural insulated panels used in many homes successfully.
Protects the openings
The strong walls make any home resistant to rain and wind, but what about windows. Remember, without a window, your home is not inviting, enjoyable, and ventilated. However, windows are vulnerable to extreme weather events. Protecting the windows against debris and wind should be your first step. High-quality shutters are recommended to have as they capable enough to resist winds.
How Much Do Hurricane-Proof Homes Cost?
The price for hurricane-resistant homes is higher than conventional homes because of the impact-resistant doors, windows and other important upgrades we discussed above. However, hurricane-resistant homes are well-insulated, leading to lower energy bills.
Since hurricane-resistant homes are proved to be highly effective against the hurricane, the demand for such homes has significantly increased. Even though today, the cost for hurricane-resistant homes is higher, some construction companies are working on low-cost hurricane-resistant homes so that people can easily afford and get a good home that protects them against extreme weather events like a hurricane. Hence, one of the first things you need to approach a trusted and experienced architect to create a perfect hurricane resistant home design.