Although building codes now require homes to be built with a continuous load path, there are still certain parts of the country where codes are not enforced. In the Gulf Coast region, for example, the building codes were not always followed prior to Hurricane Katrina. New legislation has now been passed requiring homes to meet specific code requirements. Florida adopted a strict set of building codes after Hurricane Andrew in 1992 (the strongest hurricane to make landfall in the U.S.). With the new Florida codes in place, homes built after 1996 suffered significantly less damage from Hurricane Charley in 2004 than homes built before 1996.
It's important that you take an active role in the building process in order to make sure your home is being built or remodeled to resist high winds and hurricanes.