WPI-8 is a certification that determines the insurability of a structure from wind damage.
Anytime an insurance claim has been filed, and the claim relates to the structure, it might be required to obtain a new windstorm certificate. Otherwise, when you try to get a new windstorm policy, you will be denied coverage without a WPI-8.
With the recent hurricane Ike, many homeowners replaced their roof and/or made structural repairs. Sometimes roofing companies are not providing a new WPI-8 when they should. It is not the fault of the homeowner since they were most likely unaware of the process. It is the fault of the roofing company.
So how do you protect yourself when buying a home?
Anytime there is an indication that there were structural repairs on the seller's disclosure or in your inspection report, obtain a CLUE report (Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange) before you decide to purchase a home, possibly during the option/inspection period or before even making an offer on the home.
One thing that you can do is search for a WPI-8 in Texas, online. TEXAS WPI-8 SEARCH Or ask your insurance agent to see if there is an existing WPI-8. However, if structural changes have been made to the home, the existing WPI-8 might not be valid.
Contrary to other articles and speaking with my insurance agent, they can obtain a CLUE report on any home, at any time. Before purchasing a home, call your insurance agent and have them run a CLUE report, regardless if there have been structural repairs or not. It is always good to know if there have been any claims on the home.