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What is Seismic Retrofitting?

A seismic retrofit is the addition of one or more structural enhancements that will help keep a building, safe from the effects of seismic activity that occurs suddenly or over time. The enhancements might be as simple as straps that secure post to beam connections or more common strategies such as:

  • Securing the bottom wood plate of the lower “cripple” wall in your basement to the concrete foundation with structural anchors
  • ncreasing the “sheer” strength of the lower “cripple” wall blow the floor joists in the your basement with plywood and straps
  • Installing straps that insure structural connections from the top plate of the lower “cripple” wall to the floor joists


Reasons for Seismic Retrofitting?

Some of the reason for retrofitting may include:

  • Owners may retrofit to ensure the safety of their family
  • Landlords may wish to avoid future loss of income from a vacant and damaged building
  • Many insurance companies will not write earthquake or homeowner’s insurance until needed retrofitting is done
  • Some cities and counties mandate seismic retrofits when alterations reach a specific dollar amount or enough square footage is added to the building


Construction Process

  • Our team of certified professional structural engineers make initial assessment of your homes existing condition to verify the need for the retrofit
  • Draft plans that reflect the designation of the retrofit
  • Submit plans to City of Seattle’s building department for approval
  • Commence construction of plans in your home
  • Construction process customarily takes 3-6 working days