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2024 BFE? What Is It and How to Save Money on Flood Insurance

That’s where the regulations come in. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) uses the base flood as a national regulatory standard to reduce the risks of flood damage. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other Federal agencies employ the base flood to require the purchase of flood insurance and regulate new development. In short, the BFE can impact the cost of your flood insurance and your ability to build on or modify your property.

FEMA provides maps called Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) that show the boundaries of a community’s flood plain, and provide specific data to determine the BFE for each location. Keep in mind, however, that FIRMs aren’t perfect and don’t necessarily reflect the current state of your property or the likelihood of future floods. If you’re unsure of your property’s BFE or require more information, FEMA’s website provides resources and contact information for local floodplain management officials.

It’s also worth noting that BFE isn’t the only factor to consider when assessing your flood risk. Other factors like the slope of the land, the presence of bodies of water nearby, and the property’s elevation all play a role. In fact, even properties outside the designated flood plain can still be at risk of flooding. Additionally, FEMA updates its flood maps periodically based on new information, so it’s important to stay up-to-date with the latest regulations and developments.

In summary, Base Flood Elevation is a crucial aspect of flood plain management, and can have a real impact on your property’s insurance and development potential. While navigating the regulations and jargon can be daunting, understanding the basics of the BFE can help you make informed decisions and protect your investment. By researching and staying up-to-date with BFE and other flood safety measures, you can ensure your property and family are properly prepared for anything Mother Nature has in store.

The base flood elevation for your property can typically be found on FEMA flood maps or by contacting your local building or zoning department. You can also hire a licensed land surveyor or engineer to determine the elevation for you.

Best way to really know is to ask a flood nerd to shop your property we can tell you your BFE.

When constructing a new structure in a high-risk flood zone, it is advisable to keep it approximately two feet higher than the existing Base Flood Elevation (BFE). It is also essential to collaborate with the local flood zone authority to ensure compliance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) building guidelines for a flood zone.

Living in an unnumbered A flood zone without a BFE is a risky affair, especially if your community hasn’t established the BFE with FEMA. Constructing a structure without an accurately established BFE can be a hurdle as it might not be elevated enough to withstand floods. Collaborating with your community officials is crucial to establish a site-specific BFE. On a positive note, preparing your own Elevation Certificate for an unnumbered A flood zone is possible without a professional surveyor, saving you some bucks. Simply fill out Section E on the certificate and be on your way to a safer living environment.