Disaster losses have doubled every five to ten years since the 1950s, and in 2005 they approached $100 billion worldwide. If this trend continues, over the next 15 years insurers will face a trillion dollars in damage claims around the world. This alarming trend needs to be addressed.
Will homes become more hazard-resistent in the future? The answer needs to be "yes".
The ICLR is challenging leaders in the home construction industry to partner with Canada’s insurers to build better homes; homes that are disaster resistant and designed for safer living.
The ICLR’s “Designed… for safer living” program
Canada’s insurers, through ICLR, are partnering with the home construction industry and other stakeholders to roll out this program, which specifies construction, design and landscaping guidelines to increase a new home’s resilience to natural disasters. This program adds protection to windows and doors, provides better connections between the roof, walls and foundation, and ensures that the roof is thicker, stronger, and resists leakage.
There are two key elements to the program. First, the Institute has identified cost effective design and structural elements that must be included in a new home at a specific location. Second, upon completion of the home, the ICLR will conduct an independent inspection of the build. Homes that include these design features can be designated as “Designed… for safer living”.
Some advantages of the program to home builders include:
It sets your company apart. Independent verification will enhance your reputation.
It’s cost effective. Modest changes in design and construction will prevent loss.
Home buyers want it. This program delivers additional safety elements that buyers are demanding.
ICLR member insurers have agreed to fund the construction of Canada’s first “Designed… for safer living” homes. Occasionally, insurers receive claims that require the complete rebuilding of a home that has suffered catastrophic damage. In 2006, one of our member insurers rebuilt the first of these homes to the safer living standard. Insurers are thus willing to go beyond their contractual obligations to build disaster resilient homes that are designed for safer living.
Canada's insurers are looking to work with other stakeholders to promote the design and construction of disaster resilient homes. This loss prevention strategy is essential to address the alarming international trend of increasing disaster damage.