Licensed Contractors Needed for Seismic Retrofits
SACRAMENTO – Licensed contractors eager to grow their business and receive free specialized FEMA training can participate in Earthquake Brace + Bolt (EBB), a California program offering homeowners up to $3,000 toward a code-compliant seismic retrofit. In 2019, EBB will receive FEMA funds and expand across California into new cities and ZIP Codes, leading to a growing need for trained contractors.
“So far we’ve completed more than 6,200 retrofits thanks to our EBB contractors across California,” said Janiele Maffei, chief mitigation officer of the California Earthquake Authority (CEA) and executive director of Earthquake Brace + Bolt (EBB). “We encourage contractors to sign up for EBB and complete the training to get started on this critical retrofit work in our communities to help protect families and their homes from devastating earthquake damage.”
Once a contractor takes the free online FEMA training, they are eligible for a free listing in the EBB Contractor Directory. Beginning with the 2019 EBB program, homeowners that hire a contractor to do their retrofit work (instead of DIYers) will be required to hire a contractor listed on the EBB Directory.
There are numerous benefits for contractors in the EBB program, including the opportunity to attract new clients and receive free marketing materials like brochures, yard signs and checklist pads plus phone support if and when questions arise about the program. Nearly all participating homeowners – 95 percent – go directly to this list to hire a contractor for their EBB retrofit project. Please note that all contractors are responsible for listing their license numbers on all materials, including online listings.
“It's so important that as many homeowners as possible retrofit their homes properly and the EBB program has been a huge asset towards this goal,” said Jason King, director of BoltDownTheBayArea.com. “From raising awareness, to providing contractor training and offering a $3k incentive to homeowners, the EBB has been instrumental in helping thousands of homeowners protect their homes. However, there are many more that still need to get protected and it must be a community effort!”
Homeowners will apply online for EBB funds starting October 9, 2018 through November 13, 2018. EBB, along with FEMA, will process and review the applications over the following months, awarding grants in early 2019. Soon after, thousands of homeowners across the state will be searching for contractors to complete their retrofit.
Homes that qualify typically:
- Were built before 1980
- Have a raised continuous perimeter concrete foundation
- Sit on level ground or a low-slope
- Have wood-framed cripple walls in the crawl space
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