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Ideas for Building a Flood-Proof Home

During the rainy season, New Jersey homeowners are faced with the risk of their home flooding, causing structural damage and the loss of their belongings. According to National Flood Insurance program statistics for 2016, New Jersey homeowners accounted for over 232,000 policies worth $56 billion in flood insurance and received over $6.1 billion in claims payments between 1978 and 2015. With this in mind, it makes sense to incorporate strategies for flood prevention into your home’s architecture. Here are some tips from a leading architect in NJ.

  • Know if you’re in a high-risk zone: A great source for information about flooding in your area are the FEMA Flood Zone Maps, which you can access online. These maps use aqua markers to indicate if an area is below the flood marker. Ask your architect to determine your BFE (base flood elevation) and DFE (design flood elevation) to ensure that your house is set at the correct height and according to building codes.
  • Ask for a topographic survey: Your architect can provide you with a topographic survey of your property to map out the land’s elevations accurately. This will confirm your BFE and DFE properly. In addition, this is vital information for your architect that will determine where the best high points are on your property for the placement of your home, within your zoning restrictions.
  • Place your home on columns: Flood zone properties can still be built on and elevating the entire home on columns are one of the ways to achieve this. A reinforced concrete deck sitting on reinforced concrete beams and columns will set your home at the correct height above flood level.
  • Use the right materials: Certain building materials can withstand flooding and the force of water much more effectively than others – although there are no guarantees. Concrete is the best of these materials, as it is strong, durable and fire-proof as well. If you don’t like the aesthetic of concrete, it can be covered with stucco or siding. Steel frames are another great alternative and these houses are built in a similar way to traditional wood frame houses. They are durable, very strong and fire-proof, but need to be constructed by experienced professionals and insulated well.

Design a Safe and Beautiful Home – Speak to Residential Architecture Design Specialists in NJ 

The firm of Seth A. Leeb is a full-service residential and commercial architectural firm, and we have considerable experience working on residential projects, including remodeling and new builds. We consider designing and building your project as a privilege, and we’ll work with you to make the process as smooth and rewarding as possible. For more information on our services as custom home architects and to speak to a residential architect in NJ, please contact us today or visit our website at https://leeb-architecture.com/