Hurricane-Resistant Home Design: What You Need to Know

HomeBlogHurricane-Resistant Home Design: What You Need to Know

Hurricanes can strike devastating blows to Florida homes. If you home isn’t properly designed and constructed to withstand high winds and flooding, you might find yourself trapped underwater.

Hurricane-Resistant Home Design: What You Need to Know

Fortunately, there are numerous options available for both new construction and retrofitting existing structures that significantly boost a home’s storm resistance. Here are some key things to know about hurricane-resistant home design.

Hurricane-Resistant Roofing

The roof is the first line of defense against hurricane winds, rain, and flying debris. Installing a strong, well-sealed roof is critical. The following are good options:

  • Hip or gable roofs with additional bracing. Their sloped designs help shed water and wind loads.
  • Impact-resistant roofing materials like architectural composite shingles or metal roofing.
  • Proper sealing around flashing, vents, and roof penetrations with mastic sealant rather than cheaper sealants. Taped seams don’t hold up.
  • Reinforcing hardware like ridge caps and hip/ridge clips to minimize wind lift.
  • Avoid roof-mounted equipment and locate it on interior-braced walls instead, if possible.

Building Wraps and Siding

Using secondary water barriers under siding provides an important additional layer of moisture protection if winds or floods breach the exterior. Fiber cement siding, metal, stucco, and concrete are some of the most wind-resistant siding options. Properly installing trim, corners, and joints also prevents water intrusion.

Windborne Debris Protection

Hurricane shutters and impact-resistant window and door systems defend against flying objects that can easily penetrate regular glass. Install products rated for your area’s wind zone that completely cover all openings. Leave installed if evacuating.

Location and Landscaping

Certain site choices offer inherent advantages. Elevating homes on piles or foundations helps flood waters flow under the structure. Removing nearby trees and poles eliminates wind-borne hazards. Gutters and downspouts should move water away, not toward the home.

With careful attention to home design and material choices tuned for your region’s climate threats, a hurricane-resistant home remains the safest shelter through any storm. The benefits of hiring custom home builders with experience creating home designs that can stand up to Mother Nature’s toughest challenges should not be underestimated. Hurricane season is not the time to find flaws in a home’s storm protection. Make upgrades and fortifications a priority today. Stay safe in any weather ahead!