In the aftermath of the tornado in Gaylord that destroyed so many homes killing two and injuring 44 people, you can’t help but wonder if it could have been avoided. Along with not having any local tornado warning siren it is coming to light that many homes do not have hurricane straps. Hurricane straps are a connector that is used to strengthen framed homes. They are a steel connectors that attaches the sidewall framing to the roof framing to help protect roofs from winter storms and tornados. Construction codes now require it in Northern Michigan but it is not uncommon to find them missing in homes over 20-30 years old. It can be an easy and affordable fix if you don’t have it with material costs averaging between $100-$500.
How To Verify You Have Hurricane Straps?
While verifying that you have hurricane straps it is recommended to hire an inspector or a licensed builder. They will be familiar with the local construction codes and be able to identify if you have the right straps that are weighted for Northern Michigan winters and tornados. From Traverse City to any other local township it could vary on what they require to meet code.
Make Sure You Verify The Type Needed, Brand, and Quality of Steel.
There are many varieties of straps and clips so making sure the you get the right type can be critical. The good thing is the material costs for these supplies are minimal compared with just about any other project. We have found the materials to add them to be between $100-$500 based on the size of your house.
How to add Hurrican Straps?
Even though it is recommended to have a professional install your hurricane straps or clips it is something that could be completed by a well researched homeowner. The most difficult part of the task is the ability to access it. Many times with low pitched roofs it can be very hard to reach. In conclusion though this is a fix that could possibly save your life or that of a family member. Many times with weather related disasters if the roof does not stay intact it can destroy the home beyond repair if it is exposed to flooding or winter elements. Even considering the just the wait time on contractors during a natural disaster like what happened in Gaylord can be life altering. “Also it is an item that could be flagged during a home inspection so it maybe worth adding to avoid a prolonged closing if you plan to sell at any point.” Says Amber Cyman a local Traverse City Area Realtor.