Of the five largest wildfires in Colorado history, four have happened since 2018.

“With a drier climate, with higher temperatures … the chance for these catastrophic wildfires is going to increase over time. … People are scared and they need somewhere to turn for assistance,” says Jim Webster with Wildfire Partners, a Boulder County program.

When a homeowner signs up, a specialist inspects their property for free — looking at everything from the spacing of the trees to what’s under their deck and in their gutters.

Then the specialist gives the homeowner a personalized list of action items.

Once the homeowner completes everything on the list, they get a yard sign and a certificate. Many insurance companies accept the certificate as proof of fire protection, and it can also help with future home sales.

But the program does not end with the certificate.

“Vegetation grows, pine needles accumulate,” Webster says. “So it’s really important that the mitigation continue over time.”

This ongoing work takes some effort, but it can help people reduce the risk of losing their homes.

And Webster says that if a fire does force homeowners to evacuate, they rest assured.

“They feel a little sense of security knowing they did what they could,” he says.

Reporting credit: Stephanie Manuzak/ChavoBart Digital Media