Affordable FEMA Elevation Certification
The Elevation Certificate is a tool that shows your building’s elevation which is the height or distance that the building is above a particular point. That is important information if your building is located next to a creek, river, lake or other body of water. For example, a potential home owner may want to obtain an Elevation Certificate to know what the flood risk is for the property prior to purchase. The certificate may be required by mortgage and/or insurance companies to determine the risk of flood and to determine your premium.
FEMA has established flood zones from historical data. The agency updates their flood zones as needed. This usually happens after a storm and there was localized flooding reported by the community. FEMA reviews and updates flood zones when building projects and new developments are completed that may impact the potential of flooding. FEMA may decide to add/include your property in the new flood plan. If the property is now in a designated "flood zone", the homeowner is required to obtain flood insurance. An Elevation Certificate is required to dispute their decision and have your property removed from the flood zone
Sometimes current homeowners want to challenge their current flood status which may be incorrect or outdated if property or geographical changes have occurred. An Elevation Certificate is needed to challenge FEMA’s current flood zone plan that includes your property.
If the homeowners want to reduce or eliminate their mandatory flood insurance premium, they will need a current Elevation Certificate provided by a licensed surveyor. We usually complete our part of a flood study in 3 days.
The next step is your submission of an application to FEMA. This is a request for an official determination by FEMA of your house and/or it’s elevation relative to the designated flood area. This area is termed the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA). It has been determined that this area has 1% or greater chance/probability of flooding in any given year, Base floodplain, 1% annual chance floodplain, or the 100 year floodplain (common term for most people) - all refer to the Special Flood Hazard Area.
FEMA reviews the flood map change request with supporting documentation. FEMA decides to either approve or deny the map change request. They will issue a Determination Document with the final decision. This document will state if FEMA approved or denied your request for a map change. If they agree to the revision request or map amendment, you may not be required to insure your house against flooding.
If your request is approved, send the Determination Document to your lender/mortgage company. Request that the mandatory federal flood insurance requirement be removed from your home.
The process may be timely and even more time for the insurance company to implement the changes, so don't delay initiating if there is a need for a flood study.
Call us and we can discuss the decision to do a study. We will share any information that we have that may help in making the decision. We are extremely detailed oriented. We have the expertise and experience needed to survey and complete the needed technical documents. We work in and around the Jefferson, Shelby County and Chilton county area and throughout the state of Alabama. To ask any questions or discuss the benefits of a FEMA Elevation Certification, call us at (205) 688-6656.