What is the California EBB Program?

As you may already know, about twice a year, the State of California’s “Earthquake Brace + Bolt” (“EBB”) grant program provides homeowners in the Greater Los Angeles region with completely free money grants of $3,000 (and potentially other supplemental grants) in order to subsidize the cost of seismic retrofitting their homes.  Right now, and for a limited time, the EBB program is accepting grant applications from homeowners who live in many eligible EBB ZIP codes across the greater Los Angeles area!  If you are a homeowner, don’t turn down free money!  Check if your own ZIP code is eligible for the EBB Grant program.

How does an EBB-approved homeowner choose a contractor?

As an LA region homeowner, once you register with the EBB, you will be notified when you are chosen to participate in the program.  At that point, you will log into your EBB Homeowner Dashboard and within the required deadlines, provide EBB with the information they request (e.g., pre-retrofit photos and others documents) which, if you choose Weinstein Construction as your contractor, we can put together for you).

Then, you will also need to choose a contractor from a list of EBB-approved contractors to do the retrofitting work for you.  Your first step will be to check out EBB’s Contractor Directory, and pick an EBB-approved contractor who is listed on the Directory.  You can see the EBB Contractor Directory by clicking here.  Of course, on the Directory you will also find Weinstein Construction, as we are an EBB-approved contractor, and have completed special FEMA training for retrofitting homes!

Once you find Weinstein Construction on the EBB Directory, make sure to click on the “Homeowner Reviews” link, to see our many Five Star reviews from homeowners just like you!  Alternatively, if you want to see Weinstein Construction EBB reviews right now!  Once you have found your contractor to do the retrofitting work (and we hope you pick Weinstein Construction), you should work with your contractor to get the project underway.

Make sure to also check and see whether or not your chosen contractor has a current State of California license to do the work and is in “good standing” with the California’s Contractors State License Board (“CSLB”).  To do this, access the CSLB website where you’ll find that Weinstein Construction has a valid and current license, and that we are in good standing with the CSLB!

You can find further details on how to navigate the EBB process by accessing the EBB’s “Getting Started” page or you can simply call Weinstein Construction at 818-717-7020 and we will help you navigate this process and answer any questions you may have on the subject!

Can you give me some additional “pro” tips on choosing a contractor?

Yes, of course!  Below are our top tips for choosing a contractor to do your EBB work!


  • Check to see how many years the construction company you picked has been doing earthquake retrofitting. This is important because many construction companies have been doing this work for just a couple of years, and as such don’t have the right experience to do this work the right way.  We recommend that you pick a contractor with at least 10 years of experience.  Weinstein Construction is your neighborhood contractor, we have over 45 years of experience, and we have undertaken more than 8,000 retrofitting projects just like yours!


  • Check to see how many years the construction company has been operating under the same name and under the same license number. This is important because many construction companies get into trouble or go out of business, and then re-open under a new name or someone else’s license, or even without a license (which is illegal!).  Weinstein Construction has been operating under the same name for over 45 years!


  • Check to see that the owner of the construction company is also the owner of the license. This is important because in many construction companies, the owner of the company is not licensed to do this work, but rather the owner uses someone else’s license (for example, a retired contractor, who gets paid for “renting out” his license).  This is called a Responsible Managed Operation (“RMO”) situation, and it’s not good news.  We recommend that you only hire a construction company where the owner is also the license holder, which is how Weinstein Construction operates!


  • Check to see that the construction company is bonded and insured. This is important, because when your contractor is bonded, he has purchased a “surety bond” which protects you as a consumer from losses that result from incomplete work or damage to your property.  And when your contractor is insured, he has purchased insurance policies that protect the contractor (and therefore you as a consumer) from insured losses.  As such, if you are damaged by the contractor, you can file a claim and receive compensation from the contractor’s insurance company.  We recommend you only hire a contractor like Weinstein Construction, who is bonded and insured!


  • Check to see that the construction company has a “bricks-and-mortar” office with staff working in it. This is important because many construction companies are “fly-by-night” operations that are run out of someone’s home basement or garage using a P.O. Box and voice-mail.  Don’t fall into this trap, and only hire a legitimate contractor like Weinstein Construction – we have an actual office in Van Nuys, and our staff will answer your calls during business hours!  You are always welcome to stop by and say hi!


  • Check to see that the contractor works with his own full-time employee crews. This is important because many construction companies hire “day laborers” for their jobs. Such day laborers congregate at known spots around town, to be picked up for a day or two of work.  Such laborers have unknown backgrounds, commute great distances (and so are more prone to miss work days), and they are often inexperienced in doing this work.  Don’t take a chance on hiring a contractor who gives you a cheap work quote but then turns around and uses day laborers to do the work!   You’ll be happy to hear that Weinstein Construction’s work crews are our experienced full-time employees, who have been with us for years and years!


  • Check to see that the contractor’s work crews are FEMA and OSHA-trained and certified. This is important because many construction firms don’t train their employees appropriately, and that can be a serious issue on a construction project.  You must only hire a construction company like Weinstein Construction, which requires its work crews to complete FEMA and California OSHA safety training courses.


  • Check to see that the contractor has Workmen’s Comp. This is important because many construction companies do not provide their employees with the legally-required Workers’ Comp coverage.  And so, guess what?  If you hire a contractor who has no Workers’ Comp, and the contractor’s employee gets hurt while working on your home, you could be on the hook for paying that injured worker’s medical bills!  Because a construction site poses a risk of physical injury, you must only hire a construction company like Weinstein Construction, which provides its employees with Workers’ Comp coverage!


  • Check to see that the construction company own and insures its own equipment. This is important because many “fly-by-night” construction companies just rent their equipment without insuring it.  And so, if the equipment breaks down or damages your property, the contractor may just bail on your without making you whole!  You should only hire a construction company like Weinstein Construction, which owns its own equipment and insures it!   How can you tell if the contractor owns its own equipment?  Take a look at his trucks!  Are they new model trucks, clean, and painted with the company’s logo?  If your contractor shows up in a rental or an old, beat-up rust bucket, just say “no”!


We all know that the Greater Los Angeles region is overdue for a huge earthquake – we are all simply waiting for the “Big One”!  Don’t waste this chance to secure your home and all who live in it!  Let the professionals at Weinstein Construction help you navigate the EBB registration process!  We are approved by the EBB program and are a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) authorized and trained contractor!  Call us today at 818-717-7020 to schedule a free inspection of your home for this fantastic initiative that puts free government money in your pocket!  You can also learn more about the EBB program and Weinstein Construction.