Earthquake damage is expensive. Not only can all of your possessions be destroyed, but the memories created in your home can also cease to exist. No one wants to think about the destruction that an earthquake brings, but unfortunately, if you live in Los Angeles, it is a reality that needs to be recognized. After the horrendous Northridge Earthquake that struck California in 1994, many building codes were amended to ensure that homes and businesses would be protected. It can take a bit of money to ensure safety, which is why this article will discuss the soft story retrofit cost in Los Angeles.

Retrofit Program

All new buildings in Los Angeles are virtually earthquake-proof. But what about older buildings? Unfortunately, because they were not built to withstand major earthquakes, they are at a huge risk of damage in the event of another natural disaster. To this end, the city of Los Angeles has made it mandatory that certain at-risk buildings need to be properly retrofitted so that they can withstand the rigours of an earthquake.

This seems logical, but it can also be expensive. In particular, soft story apartment buildings use steel moment frames in their foundation. Each apartment frame costs between $24,000 and $29,000 and can easily increase based on current construction costs. An alternative to replacing the entire steel frame is to reinforce existing walls, which can be done with plywood and other materials. Both have their pros and cons, which is why an expert is needed.

Retrofit Companies

For those that own or live in a soft story building and who are affected by the retrofit program, the first step is to talk to a professional. There are many to choose from, but one company that stands out from the rest is Retrofitting 360. Retrofitting 360 serves Los Angeles property owners by providing safe, cost-effective solutions to the mandatory Los Angeles Soft Story Retrofit Program. This team of professional builders and engineers will conduct a survey to decide just what needs to be done, how long it will take, and how much it will cost. Soft story retrofit costs in Los Angeles can quickly skyrocket, which is why you should start a plan now, before building materials and labour becomes even more expensive.


If you’re in doubt over what to expect from a retrofitting company, err on the side of caution and expect a lot. A good company like Retrofitting 360 will look at all cost cutting measures that don’t sacrifice on safety. They will help you decide if a steel frame or shear walls are necessary. They will understand all the latest building codes so that you pass your inspection right away.

Most importantly, a good retrofitting company won’t disrupt your life in any undue way. This could be anything from parking issues to noise complaints. Communication is paramount so that everyone knows what is happening and why. The soft story retrofit costs in Los Angeles aren’t just measured in monetary numbers. Rather, the cost is in regard to your life as well. Be proactive, find a professional, and be at peace that your home is safe and will protect you.

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