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Victor Construction
Serving the San Francisco and Marin County areas

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structural and earthquake engineering in the San Francisco and Marin County Areas
Victor Construction

Residential Earthquake Retrofitting Requirements in San Francisco, California

The San Francisco and Marin Country Earthquake Seismic Retrofitting and Dry Rot Repair experts


The San Francisco area contains multiple seismic hazard zones. Earthquakes in the San Francisco area pose a risk not only for residential homeowners, but also for their family and guests. And while California has a 99% chance of experiencing an earthquake of 6.7 or greater magnitude within the next 30 years, retrofitted homes have endured with greater safety and little or no structural damage.

For these reasons, San Francisco has implemented the Mandatory Soft Story Program enforced by the Department of Building Inspection. For greater safety and prevention of loss of life in the event of an earthquake, this program requires earthquake retrofitting for multi-family, soft-story, wood-framed residential buildings as well as substandard structures.

Earthquake damage to a home floor

What is Residential Earthquake Retrofitting?

Seismic retrofitting improves the resilience of your residential property in the event of an earthquake. Retrofitting strengthens the connection between the residential building’s foundation and its frame.

A residential earthquake retrofit helps prevent both structural damage and potential loss of life during seismic events in San Francisco and throughout California.

Why is Retrofitting Necessary?

Older residential structures may have been built prior to enhanced seismic codes. Retrofits ensure a structure’s integrity. In the case of a smaller magnitude earthquake, a seismic retrofit prevents unsightly damage that may lead to greater structural damage down the road. In the case of larger magnitude earthquakes, retrofits can save lives. And when entire communities retrofit, the benefits are compounded. FEMA states that “communities with more retrofitted structures can recover from earthquakes more rapidly.” That benefits the entire community during a seismic event, and can turn a potential catastrophe into a manageable, recoverable event.

The Benefits of Retrofitting Your San Francisco Home

While retrofitting your home can save lives during an earthquake, you will enjoy other benefits as well. For instance, your insurance premiums may be reduced, saving you money even before an earthquake happens. Furthermore, an earthquake retrofit for your San Francisco residence will increase property value as concern over seismic events grows. Finally, while public policies in some global regions focus on re-construction, retrofitting your structure remains far less costly and time-consuming.

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Contact VCE

Whether your concern is saving lives, increased property value, or simply meeting San Francisco area ordinances for your residential property, it is important to work with a qualified, licensed earthquake retrofitting contractor with impeccable experience. Victor Construction & Engineering has served Marin County since 1989 with competitive prices and unmatched skills.

Contact us in San Francisco today for your earthquake retrofit, foundation and dry rot repair, or remodeling needs. Or call 415-472-9144 to learn more.