Highlands Goes Back to AE Zone

flood maps Many of Highlands’ homes have been shifted out of the most at-risk flood zone, according to revised maps posted online during the weekend by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

These maps are meant to supersede the Advisory Base Flood Elevations released earlier this year by the agency. Zoom in or search by address in the interactive map to the left to compare the new and old flood zones.

What does reverting back to AE from V zone mean? Highlands residents no longer have to move their houses or use a costly, screwlike form of pilings called helical piles during the elevation work. Which means significant savings for residents. Raising a home in a “V” zone could cost up to $30,000 more than in an “A” zone.

The number behind the letter is as equally important. For example: A-8, AE-11 or AO-12. The number behind the letter represents how high your home now needs to be above the elevation. For example, if you first floor is currently rests at 9 feet above the BFE. They changed it to AE-11. This means that you are 2 foot below the Base Flood Elevation (BFE Level). If you choose to not raise my house above this 11 foot elevation requirement, you will be hit with excessive flood insurance rates in the next four years for two reasons. 1. The government subsidy was removed. 2. The house is a higher risk hazard to insure. This is the specific to the changes in  the Biggerts Water Act of 2012.  Irregardless of Sandy,  we were all getting hit with these rate increases.

To view official memo on what changes to Flood insurance will take place after Oct 2013 click here


    • Brian, I think that document is outdated. Didn’t Biggert-Waters remove all the grandfathering from the NFIP?

      That’s one of the things I’d really like to fight to get back, but for now, it’s part of that law.


  1. according to the NHMA two important changes with the adoption of the Biggert Waters Act last summer are:
    1) FEMA is to stop giving premium discounts to properties that are *below* the BFE, *even* if they were up to code when built. 2) Pre-FIRM and Grandfathered Rates are going to be Phased-Out. In the past, many structures were allowed to keep their original flood-risk rating, even when conditions and improved understanding had changed.


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