My Safe Florida Home Program – Part 1
My Safe Florida Home is a grant from the State of Florida. The goal of the grant program is to subsidize homeowners’ projects to harden their homes against future hurricanes. The program was initially announced in May 2022 following what seemed like a mass-exodus of home insurers from the state and extremely high renewal rates for policies held on homes in Florida.
About the My Safe Florida Home Program
To start implementing reforms that would help with the cost and availability of private home insurance in Florida, the Florida State Legislature decided to re-institute a grant that would encouraging Florida homeowners to upgrade their homes to better withstand future hurricanes and wind-based storms. To do this, the My Safe Florida Homes grant/subsidy was reintroduced during a special session of congress and passed. This new round of funding would allocate $150 million to help homeowners get their roofs, windows, doors, and home-entry points better protected against hurricane winds.
For those who are not familiar, in addition to hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to November 30 every year, we also experience random high-wind storms. I personally remember losing a gazebo in a random December windstorm. No fun, but they happen. Another year, strong storms in the early spring lead to an outbreak of tornadoes… in, like, March.
My Decision to Participate
Although I just replaced my 24-year-old roof in September 2021 to help with the cost/renewal of my homeowner’s insurance, and I have hurricane shutters and a wind-protected garage door, I knew my 1977 home could still use some upgrades to be better protected. Based on the list of authorized improvements through the program, my best investment for this 2023 My Safe Florida Home grant: upgrading some of the original windows from the metal-frame, single-pane windows to impact resistant, energy-efficient ones. Realistically, the money wouldn’t do my whole home, but whatever I did would help some and the rest could be done down the line.
But passing on participating and making the most of this initiative was not an option. When resources are made available, you jump in with both feet and run with it, right?!
And so, my journey began on November 23, 2022 with the first step to getting started: I submitted my application for the free Home Inspection.