Building Resilience from Roof to Foundation: Achieving FORTIFIED Silver Certification

Carol Friedland, Kleinpeter, Shelly

The FORTIFIED Silver designation builds on the disaster resilient features of FORTIFIED Roof. FORTIFIED Silver protects vulnerable parts of the home and enhances the building’s envelope against high winds. If damaged, certain parts of the home like windows, doors and garage doors will allow water and wind to enter the home which causes more severe loss.


  • Impact protection for windows and doors: For the FORTIFIED Silver Hurricane designation, all openings must be protected using tested storm shutters and impact-rated doors, garage doors and windows. The FORTIFIED high wind standard only requires garage doors be impact rated.
  • Impact and design pressure rated garage door: The garage door is the largest opening in the exterior walls of many homes. Garage doors must be pressure rated to withstand the wind pressures generated during severe weather.
  • Chimney bracing: All chimneys must be tied into the structure of the home to resist potential wind forces.
  • Reinforced soffits: Soffits are the underside components of overhangs along the roof line. In hurricane zones, soffits often fail in high winds, allowing water into the attic. FORTIFIED Home Hurricane requires all soffit panels be in good condition, corrosion-resistant and properly braced if the soffit is over 12 inches deep. Gable end soffits should not be vented.
  • Anchored attached structures: Attached structures, such as porches and carports, must have adequate connections to resist wind forces based on the home’s location and the wind speeds common in that area. If not properly attached, attached structures can become projectiles during high-speed winds and severely damage the rest of the home.
  • Gable end bracing: Gable ends are potential failure points if they are not built to withstand the wind and pressure generated during severe weather. All gable end walls must have wall sheathing and bracing that provide resistance to impacts and wind pressure.

Example of Fortified roof.

FORTIFIED Silver requires secure gabel end. Illustration by the LSU AgCenter


Meeting the FORTIFIED standard is a simple process that follows five steps:

  1. Choose a FORTIFIED Evaluator through the FORTIFIED website.
  2. Choose a contractor or roofer.
    • The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) lists roofers and contractors who have been certified on their website. However, any contractor or roofer can do the work as long as they follow the FORTIFIED standards and work with an evaluator.
  3. Start construction on the property.
  4. The FORTIFIED Evaluator will work with your contractor to verify that all aspects of construction meet the FORTIFIED standard and to gather documentation.
  5. Once the documentation collected by the FORTIFIED Evaluator is audited by IBHS, and the property passes the audit, a FORTIFIED designation certificate will be issued.

More on FORTIFIED Certification:

1/31/2024 9:02:42 PM
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