Before buying a property, be sure to check with the Monroe County Building Department for a permitting history. Once you purchase a property, you may be required, at your own expense, to make alterations to a property that did not obtain the proper permits.
Know the inspection requirements for Transfer of Ownership (MC Code Section 122-6)
Plan for proper drainage
Participate in the Monroe County Floodplain Certificate of Compliance Program (MC Code Section 122-7)
Be aware of the substantial improvement rules
Elevation Certificates - are required to accurately rate a home’s flood risk.
Substantial Improvement, Substantial Damage and the “50% Rule”:
The National Flood Insurance Program and Monroe County regulations require improvements to structures within a Special Flood Hazard Area must meet current construction standards including elevating the building to or above the 100-year flood elevation if the improvement is 50% or more of the market value of the property.
Substantial Damage - occurs when the cost of restoring the structure to the condition before the damage would equal or exceed 50 percent of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred. (Note: The cost of the repairs must include all costs necessary to fully repair the structure to its “before damage” condition, including labor.)
Any project for improvement of a structure to correct existing violations of state or local health, sanitary, or safety code specifications which have been identified by the local code enforcement official and which are the minimum necessary to assure safe living conditions; or
Any alterations of a "historic structure," provided that the alteration will not preclude the structure's continued designation as a "historic structure.
Ways to Protect Your Property
Refer to FEMA P-312 Homeowner’s Guide to Retrofitting 3rd Edition (2014) for details on these protective measures.
FEMA form: Floodproofing Certificate
Note: Most of these actions, especially those that affect the structure of your building or their utility systems, should be carried out by qualified maintenance staff or licensed contractors. Please make sure to check with your insurance provider prior to making any modifications to your property and verify any reductions in premiums that may result from your proposed modifications.