How does the “safer from wildfires” list apply to home within city limits? i.e., “defensible space” can’t really be 100′ in town. Also, what does our Fire Safe Council need to do to be recognized by insurance companies as making our community resilient – and therefore help community members keep their insurance reasonable?
For those living in urban communities or generally smaller parcels of land, there is an exception in the regulations regarding combustible outbuildings as underlined below:
Section 2644.9 (d)(1)(B)(1)(d): Removal or absence of combustible structures, including sheds and other outbuildings, from the area within thirty (30) feet of the Building Being Evaluated or, in the event that the applicant or insured does not control the entirety of the area extending thirty feet from the Building Being Evaluated, removal of combustible structures from as much of such area as is under the control of the applicant or policyholder…
I think the likely interpretation here is: that you have a suburban parcel and only control the typical 5-15 feet on the sides of the dwelling and possibly less than 30 feet behind your dwelling, you can’t have any combustible structures on your property but your neighbors’ structures won’t count against you.
Note that the California Department of Insurance is requiring a discount for each of the mitigations individually, so you don’t have to do all the mitigations to get a discount.
With respect to your second question, the regulations mandate that insurers offer a discount to members of a “Fire Risk Reduction Community” listed by the Board of Forestry or a “Firewise Community Site in Good Standing,” meaning a community currently recognized as such by the “National Fire Protection Association.”
Insurers would be allowed to provide discount to other community groups as well so you would need to contact your agent or insurer to see if they offer additional community level discounts.