Earthquakes are certainly the most famous natural hazard for homeowners in California. The risk varies depending on your location. In Northern California, the nine Bay Area counties are more prone to shaking than in the Sacramento area, but earthquakes are a fact of life statewide and could have an impact on your choice of property. And you cannot rely on old Natural Hazard Disclosure (NHD) Reports to assess the risk to a property you plan to purchase. After significant earthquake events, State Earthquake Fault Zone maps are usually updated. In fact, newly revised earthquake maps have been created for the Napa area as a result of the 2014 South Napa earthquake.

Greater Knowledge of Local Faults


A major earthquake (6.0 on the Richter scale) struck Napa Valley in late August of 2014, changing the geology of the area, and giving geologists reams of fresh data. Since then, they have been using the data to update the area’s fault zone maps. This process is now complete, and updated maps have been issued that more accurately accounts for faults in the region. Previously unknown fault lines that ruptured during that quake have now been added.

Fault Zones and Home Ownership

These crucial maps contain multiple new earthquake fault zones. As with all fault zones that are active, the new zones require proper disclosure to those seeking to buy property that lies within them.

New homes cannot be constructed on a fault line, but generally they may be built 50 feet or more away from one. The inhabitants of such a home would certainly feel a significant quake. The foundation and structures would not be directly on the fault line as the surface is rupturing, but proximity to an active fault would likely inflict more damage, as it relates to fault rupture, than to homes further away.

Home Inspections and Hazard Assessments in the Bay Area

Whether you are a buyer, a seller, a property developer or simply a concerned homeowner, getting your home inspected and obtaining an up-to-date NHD Report is vital. Knowledge is power, and this information is critical for anticipating the risks you need to account for when living in or managing California properties.

Hire a Bay Area Home Inspection Company Today


HomeGuard Incorporated provides home inspections in Novato, Sacramento, and the Bay Area. A qualified home inspector can assess the state of your designated property. We provide natural hazard reports (also referred to as natural hazard disclosure reports or NHD reports), so you might avoid future surprises ranging from inconvenient to alarming. Ultimately, this enables you to exist in your home with the peace of mind you deserve. Call us at today at 855-331-1900, or feel free to use our online contact form to get a free quote.