Earthquake Retrofiting

My husband and I bought a house last year. The inspection report indicated the earthquake retrofitting wasn't up to modern standards and we'd like to have it updated. Does anyone have recommendations on contractors who can do this? It's a single-story house that sits on top of a garage and basement. The lot is somewhat sloped, but we aren't on a hillside so we are hoping this isn't too complicated. 

Thanks for any tips!

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RE: Earthquake Retrofiting ()

There are some programs I took advantage of to do seismic retrofitting on my house. No one had told me about the programs before, and it took some work to understand it all, so I thought I'd share in case it was helpful:

1) California has an Earthquake Brace & Bolt program that will pay up to $3,000 for seismic work. You have to apply to be in the program (I think registration opens up a few times a year), then wait a while to hear if you were accepted. In order to qualify for EBB, you can't do the work ahead of time (you can't pull the permits or start any work until you are accepted).

2) [Not sure if this applies to you or not] The City of Berkeley has a rebate on the city's transfer tax when you buy a home to use towards seismic work. You have to do the work in the first year of buying the home. It will pay up to 1/3 of the transfer tax back to you. For me, I got $3,625 from the city.

So to use these two together, I had to first apply for EBB and hope I got in within the 1 year time limit from the city to then do the work. I was a couple weeks over the 1 year deadline but I wrote to the city and was able to get an extension due to Covid. When I did this in 2020 for my 600 sq ft house, overall the total work and permits cost $7,350, and I got back $6,625, so it only cost me $725 total. That was for doing the perimeter of the house, I chose not to do the center support beams of the house which would have cost a couple more thousand.

I used Golden State Seismic & Structural for the work. I got a few quotes and they were all pretty comparable, but Golden State really seemed to know these two programs backwards and forwards and could really take all that overhead off me. They basically did all of the paperwork once I was accepted into the EBB program for me, and I just waited for the checks to come in. It was great.

Hope that helps, best of luck! Feel free to reach out if you'd like me to share any further details.

RE: Earthquake Retrofiting ()

Quake Busters.  I had used them twice (since the standards keep changing) and they were very well organized, helped with application for rebate from CSA for the work.  Were on time and cleaned up the site well.

RE: Earthquake Retrofiting ()

Altamira was wonderful and the cheapest is 4 quotes. Their website is below.

RE: Earthquake Retrofiting ()

We used Golden State Seismic and Structural for our 1920's Craftsman. Brian Bouchard is the owner. They did a great job, were courteous and professional, and were also the cheaper quote at the time (maybe 5 years ago?).

RE: Earthquake Retrofiting ()

I also recommend Altamira. I had a very good experience with them with bolting and repairing foundation cracks. 

RE: Earthquake Retrofiting ()

Echo the recommendation for Altamira; we also used the EB&B program and received the rebate.