Welcome to the Flood Zone is a nationally distributed resource for those interested in flood zone issues, land surveying, real estate, history, and educational opportunities. This newsletter has been proudly featured by the Association of State Floodplain Managers, the National Society of Professional Surveyors, and the Maine and New Hampshire Floodplain Management Programs. Please feel free to share with your friends and colleagues!

If you no longer wish to receive this newsletter, simply click the unsubscribe link in the footer of this message.


In this Issue of Welcome to the Flood Zone:

In the News: "Among the Ruins of Mexico Beach Stands One House, Built 'for the Big One'"
Speaking Engagements: November 30 - CEUs for Maine Real Estate Licencees, and December 12 - Breakfast Meeting for Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals
Resources: What is Mitigation?, Monthly Updates on Floodplain Mapping, and NFIP Publications
NFIP Guidance: Using Elevation Certificates during a FEMA Flood Map Change and Building Standards for Properties in Different Flood Zones
Real Estate Corner: "7 Things to Know Before Buying a Home in a Flood Zone"

Banner Image: The house that was built "for the Big One". Mexico Beach, Florida, in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael this October. Image by Johnny Milano from The New York Times. The article is shared below.


In the News

Among the Ruins of Mexico Beach Stands One House, Built 'for the Big One'

By Patricia Mazzei, The New York Times, October 14, 2018

"As they built their dream house last year on the shimmering sands of the Gulf of Mexico, Russell King and his nephew, Dr. Lebron Lackey, painstakingly documented every detail of the elevated construction, from the 40-foot pilings buried into the ground to the types of screws drilled into the walls. Lackey remarked, 'We wanted to build it for the big one,' he said. 'We just never knew we’d find the big one so fast.'

The story of how the sand palace made it through Michael while most of its neighbors collapsed is one about building in hurricane-prone Florida, and how construction regulations failed to imagine the Category 4 monster’s catastrophic destruction."

Read more!


Speaking Engagements

"Understanding Land Surveying & Flood Zones"

November 30, 2018, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: Focused Property Inspections, in Gorham, ME
Sponsor: The Real Estate Learning Group
CEUs: 3 Credit Hours for Maine RE Licensees
Cost: Free, courtesy of Focused Property Inspections
Click here for more information and to register for this course.

"FEMA Flood Map Changes"

December 12, 2018
Location: Portland Country Club, Falmouth, ME
Sponsor: Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals - December Breakfast Meeting



mitigation ideas

What is Mitigation?

Mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. Rigorous building codes adopted by 20,000 communities across the country are saving the nation more than $1.1 billion in prevented flood damages! A study by the Multi-hazard Mitigation Council shows that every dollar invested in mitigation saves society an average of four dollars - that's a 300% return on investment!

Click here to learn how to mitigate against many types of disasters, such as drought, erosion, flooding, earthquakes, and more.

notice to congress

Monthly Updates on Floodplain Mapping

Through its Risk MAP program, FEMA consistently releases new flood maps and data, giving communities across America access to helpful, authoritative data that they can use to make decisions about flood risk. FEMA produces a summary document to serve as notification to Congress and provide details of mapping milestones reached in the previous month and an estimated schedule of certain mapping activities anticipated in the next three months.

Click here to view the reports for 2018.

fema toolkit

NFIP Publications

FEMA's Federal Insurance Marketing & Outreach Branch has been creating a multitude of new publications, and retiring many old and obsolete products, to create an entirely new suite of publications, fact sheets, messages, social media assets and other communications materials for use by different stakeholders.

Click here to access the Regional NFIP Marketing & Outreach Toolkit.

Click here to access other NFIP Publications and Outreach Materials for Real Estate Professionals and Lenders


NFIP Guidance

Floodplain managers and consultants nationwide have been busy fielding calls from concerned citizens wondering what they need to do when FEMA's flood maps change in their area. Maine's State Floodplain Manager, Sue Baker, has been a valuable resource in guiding people through the map transition. See below for some helpful notes from Sue!

Q: With a map change on the horizon, when is it most helpful to get an Elevation Certificate for flood insurance purposes?

A: It depends on your flood zone and whether the structure is Pre-FIRM or Post-FIRM (built before or after the date of the community's first Flood Insurance Rate Map, or 12/31/1974, whichever is later).

Post-FIRM buildings: There should already be an elevation certificate on file with the community because it was necessary to determine compliance with their ordinance. If a building was built in compliance with the map in effect at the time of construction, the property owner can get “built in compliance” grandfathering when it comes to flood insurance.

Pre-FIRM buildings:
Zone X: No elevation certificate needed. As long as there haven’t been any flood losses, a property owner can get a lower-cost Preferred Risk Policy.
Zone AE (Zones A1-30): An elevation certificate may help the rate. It depends on whether the lowest floor elevation is above or below the base flood elevation.
Zone AE, but going into VE: An elevation certificate may help the rate, but regardless, the property owner should be encouraged to get flood insurance while still in AE, as VE Zone rates will be higher.

Q: If only a portion of a building is in a floodplain, does the entire building need to meet the required flood elevation?

A: YES! The most restrictive of the two flood zones a building is located in will determine the building requirements for the whole structure. So if a building is partially in Zone X and partially in the higher-hazard Zone A, all construction requirements will need to meet Zone A standards.
There are many different documents that reference this rule.

for sale

Real Estate Corner

7 Things to Know Before Buying a Home in a Flood Zone

By Robert Kociecki, Emergency Essentials, December 19, 2017

"You’ve found your dream home—it’s everything you wanted, and it’s in your price range! There’s just one problem: It’s in a flood zone.

It’s time to consider your options. The key is to gain a full understanding of the situation so that you can make an informed decision about whether the home is right for you. Here are seven things you should know before you buy a home in a flood zone."

Read more!


November Flood Funny

November Flood funny

Image by: Dave Granlund

Powered by Mad Mimi®A GoDaddy® company