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Begin with Flood Assessment
By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff
As with any other issue that has to be dealt with, the root cause should be addressed first. In the case of flooding, the location of the property is usually the reason why floods occur. There are some properties that are built on areas that tend to flood. On the other side of the spectrum, there are those that have low probability of flooding. For a property owner, it is vital to determine which one is applicable to a particular structure. Knowing this will help the owner allocate the resources meant for flood prevention.
The first step in flood readiness is to establish whether or not the property is located in a flood zone. Some of the sources of information are the local government’s building authority or the insurance or lending agent. There are flood maps available through the Federal Emergency Management Area. This can be a useful reference because the maps take into consideration the topography and historical data gathered by experts.
The base flood elevation of the property is also an important figure to find out. The base flood elevation refers to the elevation at which the structure has a one percent chance of flooding annually.
Knowing the risk factor of the property helps in the insurance aspect of flooding. FEMA conducts a National Flood Insurance Program and participating communities may purchase flood insurance. It also helps the homeowner plan out the interior and exterior of the house in such a way that the risk of flooding is minimized. For example, if the area where the structure is to be built is near the ocean where wind-borne rain is the strongest, the property owner may want to consider the use of tempered glass on the windows. Although it is more expensive than traditional glass panels, they are safer to use and more resistant to the impact of the wind.
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