Natural disasters are hard to predict, but our response and preparation to these potential events can determine just how well we survive the impact. It’s important to understand that there are ways to diminish damage and prepare for the challenges that hurricanes, tornadoes and floods can affect your new resilient home in Asheville, or Highlands, NC. We’ve highlighted some of the most effective ways to approach this in new home construction.
Start with selecting land that is situated outside flood plain areas and has an elevation that can protect from the majority of flooding that has occurred in the past. Even with 100-year flood lines, the severity of recent storms can produce those once unusual events more frequently. If you haven’t located your land yet, take a close look at floodplain maps, watersheds and bodies of water near the site. If your planned home is located in an area that may be subject to flooding, consider raising the ground floor high to escape flood waters. Many shoreline properties locate unfinished spaces like garages on the ground floor level with living spaces, mechanicals and generators on second and third floors.
With the whole log construction of Katahdin Cedar Log Homes, the structural integrity is hard to overcome. Using galvanized, ACQ plated fasteners are standard, we use stainless steel in coastal areas. Lag bolts can ensure that these connectors stay in place and avoid corrosion that might weaken less expensive fasteners. Roof systems and floor systems both are securely attached to withstand the wind loads and keep your resilient home covered to avoid rain and water damage.
Control Insect Damage
When insects damage a home’s structure, they weaken it. With the natural insect resistance of Northern White Cedar used in Katahdin Cedar Log Homes, your home is protected from the damage that could cause structural failure from wind damage. Because cedar oils are a natural defense, homeowners avoid the need for toxic chemical treatments to prevent insect colonies inside the walls.
Glazing Prevention & Protection
Even with reinforced glass, sometimes internal pressure differences will blow out large window areas because the frames were not well secured to the structure. The resilient home solution is an easy one— just increase the number of fasteners used to secure the frame in place. Besides depressurization, flying debris can also damage windows and allow rain to enter the home. Consider storm shutters to protect windows even when non-coastal zones don’t require them to meet code. They also provide added security for summerhomes during the off-season.
Another safety measure for homes located in heavily wooded areas, is to create a firebreak zone of cleared vegetation around the home. This will discourage the spread of fire by keeping highly combustible undergrowth a distance of up to 30 feet away from the structure.
In many cases, the protective measures don’t add a significant cost to the budget, but can decrease the damage should your home be in the path of a destructive storm.