Visit FEMA's map service center website. FEMA has digital copies of flood insurance rate maps for many communities across the United States.
Narrow down the area where your property is located by searching by state, county, and community. As you search write down the ID numbers for you area. The state ID will be a two-digit number, the county and community are differentiated by six-digit community identification numbers.
Pull up the community map and locate your property. You will need to use references including lot dimensions to locate your property. If your community does not appear on the flood map, repeat your search, but this time search county-wide. County maps only cover the flood-prone communities, but they make note of the non-flood-prone communities in the footnotes. If you find it difficult to view the map, call the FEMA map service center and order a copy of the map. Alternatively, your local building and zoning office should carry copies of FIRMs.
Read the legend on either your digital or paper map. In comparing your property to the symbols in the legend you can ascertain your property's elevation, its elevation in relation to the base flood, and its flood risk classification.
Things You Will Need
- Property survey
- The maps will resemble engineering maps; there will be no addresses. You will need to extrapolate where your property is on the maps. To help find your property on the map, use references such as streets, how many lots you are away from intersections and the shape of your property. If you know the actual dimensions of your lot you can use the scale on the map to verify you have the correct property. Note that all maps will be slightly different, so read the legend carefully if viewing different maps.
- Flood maps contain a legend. In the legend you can expect to find information including your flood insurance risk zone and the boundaries of the 100- and 500-year floods. FEMA has map service specialists that you can call if you have difficulty deciphering the maps.