CFS Engineering | Land Surveying

FEMA/NFIP Related Surveys

When an Elevation Certificate demonstrates that a property is above the Base Flood Elevation (BFE), that property then qualifies for a Letter of Map Revision (LOMA) and the flood insurance requirement for that property may be eliminated.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) established and maintains the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).  The NFIP is a Federal program that enables property owners in participating communities to purchase insurance as a protection against flood losses in exchange for State and community floodplain management regulations that reduce future flood damages.  When a community adopts and enforces a floodplain management ordinance to reduce future flood risk to new construction in floodplains, the Federal Government will make flood insurance available within the community as a financial protection against potential flood losses.  This insurance is designed to provide an insurance alternative to disaster assistance to reduce the escalating costs of repairing damage to buildings and their contents caused by floods.

FEMA is required by statute to identify and map the Nation's flood-prone areas and to establish flood-risk zones in such areas.  Because the sciences of climatology and hydrology are inexact and evolving, FEMA is constantly revising and updating their Flood Insurance Studies.  These revised Studies generate updated Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM).  When these FIRMS are revised, the delineation lines between flood hazard areas and non-hazard areas sometimes changes.  As a result of these changes, adversely affected property owners are notified by their lenders that their property has been determined to be in a flood zone. 

Property owners may disagree with the new flood zone determination for their property.  If so, they have options to challenge the NFIP determination.  The Elevation Certificate is used by the NFIP to determine proper flood insurance premium rates, to document elevation information necessary to ensure compliance with community floodplain management regulations, and (most importantly to property owners) to support a request for a Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA) or Letter of Map Revision based on Fill (LOMR-F).  The Base Flood Elevation (BFE) is the anticipated water surface elevation determined for a particular area by FEMA's Flood Insurance Studies.  When an Elevation Certificate demonstrates that a property is above the Base Flood Elevation (BFE), that property then qualifies for a Letter of Map Revision (LOMA) and the flood insurance requirement for that property may be eliminated.

Large scale projects may require hydrologic and hydraulic engineering studies to demonstrate to FEMA that the completed project will not adversely affect the floodplain or be impacted by potential floods.  CFS Engineering has intimate knowledge of these types of studies and understands the detail requirements for comprehensive and accurate flood plain surveys.

FEMA/NFIP Surveys Include:

  • Elevation Certificates and LOMA Processing
  • Floodplain and Floodway Topographic Surveys
  • Floodplain and Floodway Cross Sectional Surveys

CFS Land Surveying Services

To learn more about the land surveying services CFS Engineering provides, please click the links below:

Capitola Office | 1840 41st Ave., Suite 102-264 | Capitola, CA 95010 | T: 831-477-9215
Sonoma Office | 617 Broadway, #1962 | Sonoma CA 95476 | T: 707-996-8449
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