We want your home to be safe through hurricane season, but did you know that you could be eligible to save on the initial investment?
There are many options for reducing the cost of adding hurricane protection to your home and reducing the cost of investing reputable hurricane protection/resistant products will save in potential damage costs.
Protect your home as well as reduce homeowners’ insurance premiums, apply for discounts, and submit for income tax credits.
What Exactly is Hurricane Protection?
Due to several years without a severe hurricane storm many people have grown complacent about the damage and destruction that will again come to our area. It is not a matter of if, but when another powerful hurricane will strike. Now is the time to prepare your home and plan. It only takes one hurricane to make a terrible season if that hurricane damages or destroys your home.
Best Options for Hurricane Protection:
- Storm Tex Screens
- Advisar Doors
- Hurricane Storm Panels
- Hurricane Shutters
- Impact Resistant Windows
Hurricane protection products are installed to protect the building envelope. The main cause of hurricane damage behind storm surge is the penetration of the windows and doors from flying debris. Wind alone can cause damage, but it’s mainly caused by the debris breaking windows and doors that allow the wind to enter the home causing lift on the roof and outward pressure on the walls.
Many people have plywood but lack the ability to secure it on the home in the event of a hurricane threat. A much more convenient and stronger solution is to have rated panels, shutters or storm-resistant barriers installed on all windows and doors.
Homeowner Insurance Discounts
Another great benefit for having hurricane shutters are discounts (or credits) on your homeowners’ insurance policy. With the passing of the Omnibus Coastal Property Insurance Reform Act of 2007, insurance companies are now required to offer discounts to homes protected with hurricane protection materials. In some cases, this discount can be 20-30% off your insurance premiums… every year.
Even if you have hurricane protection material on your home, such as hurricane shutters, this doesn’t mean that you have been given the discount/credit from your insurance company. Homeowners must use products and installation procedures deemed acceptable to local building code officials, which is why it’s so important to use a knowledgeable contractor.
SC Safe Home Program for Hurricane Protection
Not Currently Accepting Applications
Administered by the South Carolina Department of Insurance, the South Carolina Safe Home Program provides grant money to individual homeowners to make their property more resistant to hurricane and high-wind damage. The funds provided by this program are for the sole purpose of retrofitting owner-occupied, single-family homes. South Carolina Safe Home funds may not be used for remodeling, home repair or new construction.
This program was established though the Omnibus Coastal Property Insurance Reform Act 2007. Written into the Omnibus Act is that if a primary-home structure is insured for less than $300,000 then you may qualify for a matching grant up to $10,000 to protect your home from hurricane damage. If your income is below a certain level, you can qualify for a full grant of $5,000 to protect your home from hurricane damage. Retrofitted or strengthened homes are less vulnerable to the effects of severe wind storms, thereby making hurricane and high-wind damage less likely and less intense.
Fewer damages result in lower or fewer insurance claims and will overtime reduce insurance premiums for all South Carolinians.
South Carolina Tax Credits
South Carolinians are incentivized to protect against damage that could be caused before a hurricane or catastrophic event occurs. There are two SC State Income Tax Credits available to help offset the costs of mitigation to one’s legal residence. Together, they are known as Tax Credits for Fortification Measures.
First, a Tax Credit for Retrofit Project Costs is available to help offset some of the costs incurred in a qualified fortification project such as labor and material costs. The maximum tax credit in any taxable year is limited to 25% of the total costs incurred (after subtracting the grant award) or $1,000, whichever is less. Second, a Tax Credit for Retrofit Supplies allows SC taxpayers a credit of up to $1,500 against the state sales or use taxes paid on purchases of tangible personal property used in a qualified fortification project.
Tax credits reduce the amount owed for state income tax, dollar for dollar. Fortification measures or retrofits must increase the structural resistance to hurricane, rising floodwaters or other catastrophic windstorm event damage.