Retrofit Information for Single Family & Duplex Wood-Frame Home Owners

image explaining how Loma Prieta earthquake impacted identical homes - retrofitted one repaired for $5,000, the other repaired for $260,000

An estimated 85% of Oakland’s existing residential buildings constructed prior to modern earthquake codes were adopted have not been strengthened to withstand a major earthquake. Yet, retrofitting works.

Your home is your biggest investment. Consider seismic retrofitting for single-family and duplex wood-framed homes built before 1979 to protect that investment. 

Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions about Home Retrofitting.


What Can I Do?

drawing showing seismic retrofitting of foundation

Strengthen the walls between your foundation and the first floor on all sides through seismic retrofitting. See image at right. Click here for more information on how to strengthen foundations.

Take advantage of Oakland’s Flat Permit Fee of $ 250 for Single Family Home Retrofits using the Standard Plan Set for Residential Seismic Retrofitting. Click here to learn more about the Standard Plan Set



The statewide retrofit incentive program Earthquake Brace + Bolt is accepting registrants through FEBRUARY 27, 2017.  This is not a City of Oakland administered program, but interested Oakland homeowners are encouraged to apply.  

image of Earthquake brace + bolt



The City of Oakland's Earthquake-Safe Homes Program for 1-4 unit owner-occupied properties is no longer accepting applications as of February 17, 2017.  If you applied for an ESHP grant and wish to access more information about the program, please click below: 

Earthquake Safe Homes Program Link Button


Take steps to secure your water heater, cupboards and furniture. Click here for helpful hints on securements


Develop a disaster plan and participate in emergency preparedness training. Consider organizing a CORE program in your neighborhood. Click here to learn more about the CORE preparedness training classes






Contact Us

For questions regarding $250 Flat Permit Fee, permits, or code questions:

City of Oakland

Building Services Division

Permit Center

250 Frank H Ogawa Plaza, Suite 2114

Phone: (510)238-3443


For Questions about the City's seismic grant programs:

City of Oakland

Housing and Community Development

Residential Lending and Rehabilitation Services

250 Frank H Ogawa Plaza, 6th Floor

Phone: 510-238-6164