An earthquake may only last a few seconds, but the impact could last far longer. While advancements in structural engineering and well-trained first-responders will likely minimize injury totals compared to earthquakes seen in other countries, new studies show that California homes may not fare as well.
A recent report published in The Wall Street Journal states that should the "Big One" strike Southern California, 2.3 million homes would be damaged or crumble completely. Many homes in San Diego are built on what is known as "fill" dirt, which during earthquakes has a tendency to liquefy, amplifying movement.
Families should be prepared with emergency kits but homeowners can take extra precautions to protect their properties. A professional inspection every decade can let residents know if their homes are in need of any major structural repairs. Securing bookshelves and appliances to walls can minimize damage to the interior of the home and while it may be costly in certain areas, earthquake insurance should also be considered.
Today, conforming no-point 30-year fixed rates are averaging 4.00 percent while the 15-year rate is near 3.25 percent.
Do you have a question for Real Estate & Mortgage Analyst Mehran Aram? Submit your queries about a home purchase, refinance, or reverse mortgage via Aramco.Biz, social media (#AramcoReport), or over the phone at (866) 381-8888 and your questions may be featured in an upcoming article.