GALLAGHER ANNOUNCES FREE HOME INSPECTIONS TO
START IN CHARLOTTE, COLLIER and MONROE COUNTIES
Tom Gallagher, Florida’s chief financial officer, announced that free home
inspections will soon begin in Charlotte, Collier and Monroe counties for
nearly 700 homeowners who applied through the My Safe Florida Home program.
The program, funded with $250 million by the Florida Legislature, was
created to better protect
Floridians by strengthening their homes against
hurricanes and to reduce the state’s exposure to hurricane damage.
“Before this hurricane season ends, my goal is to provide 12,000 free home
inspections across the state to help Floridians strengthen their homes and
better protect their families against catastrophic storms,” said Gallagher,
who oversees the Department of Financial Services which administers the My
Safe Florida Home program.
Gallagher said that homeowners in Charlotte, Collier and Monroe counties who
have already submitted completed applications will be contacted by a
department-approved inspector to schedule an inspection. The department has
already received 1,128 completed applications from homeowners in these three
counties. Future applicants will be served with additional funding of the My
Safe Florida Home program.
Following an inspection, homeowners will receive a report that outlines up
to seven areas that could be improved to better protect the home against
hurricanes, an estimate of how much improvements would cost, the expected
insurance savings the homeowner would receive if improvements were made, and
a rating of the home’s current ability to withstand hurricanes and its
future ability to withstand hurricanes with improvements.
Gallagher said that the expansion into Charlotte, Collier and Monroe
counties is possible thanks to a partnership with the Federal Alliance for
Safe Homes (FLASH) to screen and train an additional 350 inspectors.
Applying and obtaining a free home inspection is just the first step of the
program. Homeowners who undergo the My Safe Florida Home inspections may
also qualify for matching grants of up to $5,000 to fortify their homes. As
directed by the new law to reduce hurricane exposure and property losses in
Florida, grants will be prioritized and awarded to homeowners who live in
high-risk, hurricane-vulnerable areas of the state.
Since the My Safe Florida Home program launched in late August,
approximately 5,300 inspections have been completed or scheduled in Broward,
Miami-Dade and Lee counties. To ensure each county receives a fair share of
free home inspections, the My Safe Florida Home program is limiting the
number of inspections in each county based upon population. Applicants who
do not receive a free home inspection before this limit is met will have
their applications held for future phases of the program.
Eligible Floridians must live in a single-family, site-built home with an
insured value of $500,000 or less and have a valid homestead exemption.
Documents verifying this information must be submitted with a completed
application. Floridians can apply on-line at
by calling 1-800-342-2762 to get an application packet.