Wildfire Prepared Home Plus™

Building on the requirements of Wildfire Prepared Home, which identifies critical components that must be addressed to reduce wildfire risk, Wildfire Prepared Home Plus goes further to address additional areas of the home that are vulnerable to provide even greater protection. Based on the latest wildfire mitigation science, these actions, when taken together, can further reduce the likelihood embers will ignite your home.

While you can’t eliminate all wildfire risk, Wildfire Prepared Home Plus makes it easy to understand which actions can give your home an even better chance against wildfire.

ROOF

Includes mitigation actions identified in Wildfire Prepared Home, such as having a Class A roof, plus additional guidance for gutters and eaves.

BUILDING FEATURES

Addresses building features identified in Wildfire Prepared Home, such as vents, plus additional components like noncombustible siding and exterior doors, fire-resistant windows, and more.

DEFENSIBLE SPACE

In addition to maintaining the 5-foot Home Ignition Zone identified in Wildfire Prepared Home, upgrading to a noncombustible deck, removing back-to-back fencing, and moving accessory structures 30 feet from the home is required.

Typical Homes Are Vulnerable to Wildfire

We spent years studying how flames and embers ignite homes during a wildfire and have identified mitigation actions that reduce the chance a home will be ignited. These actions comprise the requirements of Wildfire Prepared Home and when taken together give your home better protection against wildfire.

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Wildfire Prepared Home Plus builds on the systems-based approach of the Wildfire Prepared Home designation to further reduce risk. This means you must take all the wildfire mitigation actions for both levels of the program to achieve a Wildfire Prepared Home Plus designation. Whether you’re upgrading your home or building a new one, it’s never too soon to take additional steps to meet the requirements of Wildfire Prepared Home Plus.

Requirements for Wildfire Prepared Home and Wildfire Prepared Home Plus go above guidance from most local jurisdictions based on the steps the latest IBHS wildfire research has shown to be effective.

Your Pathway to Better Protection Against Wildfire

* This is an abbreviated list of program requirements. Please review the Homeowner Guide to learn more.

Wildfire Prepared Home
Wildfire Prepared Home Plus
Ensure roof is Class A fire-rated
Roof must be Class A fire-resistant rated; most roof covers are, like asphalt shingles, masonry tiles that include bird stops, and metal.

Choose noncombustible gutters and downspouts
Gutters and downspouts must be made from a noncombustible material such as metal.

Clear roofs, gutters, and downspouts of debris
The roof, gutters, and downspouts must be cleaned regularly to prevent accumulation of debris such as leaves and pine needles.

Install ember-resistant vents
Vents must be either ember- and fire-resistant or covered (inside or outside) with 1/8-inch or finer metal mesh.

Ensure a 6-inch ground clearance for exterior walls
There must be a minimum of 6 vertical inches (measured from the ground up) of noncombustible material at the base of exterior walls.

Clear and maintain decks and covered porches
Deck surfaces must be kept clear of debris and combustible materials. Area under deck must also be kept clear; area under decks less than 4 feet high must be enclosed. Deck must have 5 feet of defensible space (like the home ignition zone).

Create and maintain the home ignition zone
The 5-foot area immediately around the home must have only hardscape or bare soil. All vegetation, including tree branches that overhang this area, must be removed. Combustible items must not be stored or parked here.

Maintain defensible space
The remainder of the property beyond the home ignition zone must be maintained by removing yard debris and dead vegetation and pruning trees and bushes.

Remove combustible fencing within 5 feet of the home
There must be no combustible fencing within 5 feet of the home, including where fences attach to the home.

Keep accessory structures compliant
Within 30 feet of the home, there must be no more than 3 accessory structures (larger than 15 square feet each) like sheds, playsets, gazebos, and ADUs. Each must meet the same requirements as the home, including those for defensible space.

No structures within 30 feet of home
Plus Level
Cover gutters
Install noncombustible gutter guards.

Enclose underside of eaves
Eaves must be enclosed on the underside with soffits made of noncombustible, ignition-resistant material, or 2-inch lumber (no plywood).

Install metal dryer vents
Dryer vents must be made of metal. Because of their design and function, dryer vents must not have 1/8-inch mesh.

Install a noncombustible exterior wall cover
Siding must be noncombustible such as fiber-cement, stucco, stone, or brick.

Ensure shutters, if in place, are noncombustible
Shutters, if in place, must be made of a noncombustible material.

Upgrade to fire-resistant windows
All exterior glass in windows, skylights, and within doors must be multipaned glass with a tempered outer pane; glass blocks are also acceptable (for windows only).

Upgrade to noncombustible exterior doors
Exterior doors must be noncombustible or have a noncombustible storm door installed as the outermost exterior door.

Enclose the space underneath bay windows
The area underneath bay windows on the first floor must be enclosed with a noncombustible wall.

Upgrade to a noncombustible deck
All deck components including posts, joists, railings, and walking surface must be made with noncombustible materials.

Remove back-to-back fencing
There must be no back-to-back parallel fences (i.e., there are no separate fences that are closer than 3 feet apart).

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