Elevate Finished First Floor

Photo Credit: Florida Department of Environmental Protection

A common method in mitigating flood damage to structures is elevating the first floor to the required Flood Protection Elevation (FPE). An FPE is generally above the base flood elevation plus freeboard level required by the local municipality where the structure is located. Another method is to abandon the lowest floor, given that the building is at least two stories tall. Here the lowest floor walls must be retrofitted with flood openings that allow automatic entry and exit of floodwaters and any utility systems and associated equipment on the lowest floor must be elevated to protect utilities from damage or loss of function from flooding.

FEMA - Elevating Your House
FEMA – Reducing Flood Risk to Residential Buildings that Cannot be Elevated
Solution TimelineLong Term
Adaptation InfrastructureGray
Degree of ProtectionHigh
Relative Cost ($, $$, $$$)$$$