Does FEMA show your property in a flood zone? How to find out if they got it right.

Shelly Clark

Do you have a property in the flood zone?  Do you question as to whether or not FEMA “got it right” when assessing the location of your property and if you really are in the flood zone?

Typically, in order to find out if your home is located in a flood zone, you have to hire a land surveyor or engineer to perform an elevation certificate on your property.  The certificate takes FEMA data and actual elevations of the structure and compares them to the FEMA Base Flood Elevation.  If your structure is located above the Base Flood Elevation, then you most likely won’t be required to carry flood insurance.  The problem is that FEMA does not store this data, unless you make a Letter of Map Change (LOMC) or Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA) request.

In the past, it used to take FEMA 90 days to address a request for these products.  To assist the homeowner, FEMA started an online program for engineers and surveyors to be able to submit the data electronically.  The 90 day turn-around time was reduced to 1-3 days for a typical response.

FEMA has now made this product available to the general public.  The online LOMC Application was available starting Dec. 17th, 2012.  The process is still being refined, but it does give the consumer another option when dealing with properties in the flood zone.  The application and details can be found at www.fema.gov/online-lomc.

You will still need to have an elevation certificate performed by a licensed surveyor or engineer in order to submit the online form.  Contact Shelly Clark with Cardinal Surveying if you have any questions or would like additional information.

Cardinal Surveying & MappingShelly Clark is the President of Cardinal Surveying, a family owned land surveying company. The company was established in 2003 and has completed over 10,000 projects spanning the greater St Louis area. Licensed in Missouri, they currently service St Charles, St Louis, Warren, Lincoln, and Jefferson Counties. Cardinal Surveying specializes in residential and commercial surveying, including Boundary Surveys, Surveyor’s Real Property Reports, ALTA Surveys and Elevation Certificates. Rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau for the past 7 years, their service, product, and professionalism are sure to meet every client’s needs. You can contact Shelly at 636-922-1001 or visit the company website at 222.CardinalSurveying.com.

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