HBAGNO approves resilient reroofing resolution that could help bring insurance carriers back to Louisiana

Published 9:52 am Saturday, January 28, 2023

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NEW ORLEANS — On January 17, 2023 the Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans (HBAGNO) Board of Directors approved a “Resilient Roofing” resolution (R. 01-2023) designed to enhance long-term housing resiliency and attract property insurance carriers to Coastal Louisiana.

Over the past several years the state has experienced numerous storms, including Laura, Delta, Zeta, and Ida, which have impacted Louisiana’s coast and damaged several hundred thousand Louisiana homes, costing billions of dollars of losses, with roof failure being by far the most common cause of damage.

As a result, the insurance industry has sustained crippling losses, forcing many companies into bankruptcy, and very few financially viable insurance carriers remain to insure Louisiana’s homes. Consequently, the cost of homeowners insurance in Louisiana has become unaffordable for Louisiana families, particularly in the hurricane wind zones of coastal Louisiana.

With the support of the HBAGNO, Louisiana recently adopted the 2021 IRC Code, which requires more rigorous roof construction standards, secondary leak protection, and sealed roof decks, for the first time in Louisiana State Uniform Construction Code history. These new construction codes went into effect on January 1, 2023 and represent the most resilient code requirements on the Gulf Coast.

The Homebuilders Association of Greater New Orleans continues to host public forums to both explain the new code changes and gather input from the construction industry on the changes. These public forums are necessary to help homeowners and builders understand what’s at stake in terms of ensuring homeowners can get affordable insurance for years to come.

According to Mark Joiner, executive director of the Louisiana State Uniform Construction Code Council, “Any time you adopt a new code it raises costs. But the flip side of that is if you are building a more resilient, more energy-efficient home, then your insurance rates are much lower.”

The HBAGNO put forth a resolution outlining specific steps to ensure these new codes are implemented according to law, particularly as it applies to the re-reroofing of existing homes. Insurance carriers need assurance that these new codes are being implemented in high wind coastal areas before they will return.

“With this resolution we hope to continue the hard work of finding solutions that persuade insurance carriers to come back to Louisiana,” said Dan Mills, CEO, HBAGNO. “As builders provide more resilient roofing, we hope to provide a long-term solution to our insurance needs in the face of ever-increasing coastal threats.”

To read the full resolution visit https://tinyurl.com/ywey5fem. For information about HBAGNO visit www.hbagno.org or call 504-837-2700.

Founded in 1941, the Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans (HBAGNO) provides members with continuing education, events for networking opportunities and advocacy to protect the home building industry. The HBA is a non-profit professional organization serving nearly 1,000 builders and associate members encompassing seven parishes throughout Louisiana, including Jefferson, St. Bernard, St. John the Baptist, St. James, St. Charles, Plaquemines, and Orleans. The Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans is currently celebrating over 80 years as the voice of the residential housing industry across the metro area.