Where to view floodplain designations + when you need a full professional analysis and what it will cost you. Part 2 of our 3 part “Floodplain Explained” videos.

When you’re buying a piece of land, if it is encumbered at all by the floodplain, it’s really important that you understand the floodplain designation. This can be found online with FEMA. FEMA is the Federal Emergency Management Agency. FEMA has what is deemed the SFHA – Special Flood Hazard Areas and there are different markers that will say, for example, the 100 year floodplain which is Zone A or Zone V and sometimes it’ll have another letter after it such as Zone AH or AB, for example. “A” typically stands for approximate.

Then you’ll have what’s deemed the 500 year floodplain and that is Zone B or it’s Zone X and it’s shaded on the FEMA floodplain map. Any land outside of the FEMA 500 year floodplain is considered Zone C and it will be unshaded actually on the FEMA maps.

Something to keep in mind, again “A” sometimes stands for approximate, so if you are looking to develop a property that has any floodplain encumbering it whatsoever, it’s advised to do a floodplain analysis. You’ll need to do this with a licensed engineer, of course, and then submit that to the governing body whether that’s the city or county. A floodplain analysis can cost you anywhere from two thousand dollars up to fifteen thousand dollars, so as we’ve mentioned in previous videos, we always recommend getting multiple quotes.

Feel free to reach out to us with questions or other topics you’d like to see covered.

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