Volume 5 Number 20
May 16, 2008

Program will continue offering free wind inspections until it reaches goal of 400,000

Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink today announced that the My Safe Florida Home (MSFH) program is projecting it will exceed the Florida Legislature’s goal of approving 35,000 homeowners for grants by the end of May.  The first-come, first-served program will stop accepting new grant applications at that time. MSFH will continue to work with homeowners currently making improvements to their homes.

The MSFH program will transition to an inspection-focused program beginning June 2008, offering free wind inspections for eligible homeowners until it reaches the Legislature’s goal of performing 400,000 inspections or until the program sunsets in June 2009.

"With hurricane season less than one month away, I encourage Floridians to sign up for a free wind inspection to learn how to harden their homes against hurricane damage,” said CFO Alex Sink, who oversees the Department of Financial Services. “The response from homeowners has been overwhelming, and I thank the Legislature for creating this program and allowing us to enable more than 35,000 Floridians to make their homes more storm-resistant.”

Homeowners who have already received an inspection and meet other statutory requirements may apply for a grant online at www.MySafeFloridaHome.com  or by calling toll-free 1-866-513-MSFH (6734). In addition to completing an application online or over the phone, homeowners are required to provide the MSFH program with proof of homestead and insurance for matching grants or proof of homestead and income for low-income grants. Deadlines for applying for a MSFH grant and the submission of these required application documents are listed below.
Grant Application Methods Grant Application Deadlines
Apply online Saturday, May 31, 2008
Apply over the phone Friday, May 30, 2008
Mail proof of homestead and insurance for matching grants

Mail proof of homestead and income for low-income grants
Postmarked by Friday, June 13, 2008

In 2007, the Florida Legislature directed the MSFH program to provide inspections for at least 400,000 site-built, single-family, residential properties and provide grants to at least 35,000 applicants before June 30, 2009. To date, the MSFH program has approved approximately 32,292 homeowners for mitigation grants and has paid 6,930 grants totaling more than $22.4 million. The MSFH program has also provided more than 222,981 free wind inspections. Participating homeowners receive a wind inspection report, which suggests ways homeowners can harden their homes against storm damage and informs homeowners if they are currently eligible to save money on their wind insurance premiums. To date, 59 percent of homeowners who have received a free wind inspection are eligible for discounts on their wind insurance premiums averaging $217 statewide. For additional information, log on to www.MySafeFloridaHome.com.