BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - William Adams Junior knew years ago how important it is to keep a good roof over his head.
“I discovered by the time I was 40 years old I wasn’t going to get rich so, that meant I had to preserve the little assets I got,” the homeowner told WBRC.
When the roof started leaking several years ago, he tried to find help to fix it.
“I’ve got water spots in some bedrooms and even with my kitchen. I was just blessed to be chosen for them to come to do this to my house,” Adams said.
Several months ago, Habitat For Humanity Tuscaloosa completed the work on Adams’ house.
“This roof is special because it’s fortified and has much more resiliency and resistance to straight line winds, even to small tornadoes,” explained Ellen Potts, Executive Director of Habitat For Humanity Tuscaloosa.
Tuesday, Adams’ home was recognized by the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety for being the 15,000th fortified structure in the United States.
“I’m the 15,000th you say? That’s like hitting the lotto,” Adams said.
Volunteers not only repaired Adams’ roof, they refortified it to withstand winds up to 130 miles per hour.
State leaders pushed to make homes here stronger after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.
“On a really bad day, if an outer band of a tornado was to come through this neighborhood, they lost a few shingles. They’re still going to be able to retain and keep this house because they have a sealed roof deck,” said Roy Wright, CEO of the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety.
Adams is proud the roof of his home was recognized for being fortified.
“That meant a lot to me when they told me about the fortified sort of thing, 'cause I understand, I seen a lot of blue tarps on all these houses in my time and I know roofing is a very important thing,” Adams said.
During the ceremony, State Farm Insurance gave a $150,000 check to agencies that help people fortify their roofs.