Advanced Planning for Building in a Floodplain
The best way to protect you property is to gather plenty of information for advanced planning. If you are building for the first time in the floodplain, the surest way to protect property and minimize damage to your building is to build your structure above the elevation of the 100-year flood and strictly follow local ordinances regarding building in the floodplain. To determine your flood risk, visit the FloodSmart website.
Reinforce an Existing Structure to Minimize Damage
Older properties that are already situated in a special flood hazard area require more consideration for flood protection. One way to minimize damage is to eliminate any enclosed habitable spaces at ground level, remove any non-water resistant materials below base flood elevation, move any mechanical and electrical equipment below base flood elevation (BFE) to a higher location in the building and structurally reinforce the foundation.
Raise Entire Structure to a Safe Elevation
In some circumstances when the building is built on a concrete slab at grade, the structure can best be protected by raising the entire structure to base flood elevation and building a new foundation that meets current flood protection standards.
Get Flood Insurance
Homeowner's insurance does not cover damages caused by flooding. The county recommends that people who live near or in a floodplain purchase flood insurance, even if it is not mandated by your home mortgage company. Every year, 25% of flood damages occur on properties outside of the floodplain. Flood insurance is available to everyone in Roanoke County, even if you do not live in a floodplain. To learn more about flood insurance, visit the National Flood Insurance Program website.
For More Information
To learn more about how to protect your home from flood damage, there are more resources available on the Federal Emergency Management Agency website.