FEMA’s New Site is Very Cool!
Part of the submission package for FHA condominium project approval is to supply FHA with a FEMA flood map which outlines the property boundaries of the condominium. Several months ago, I wrote about how FEMA had modified their site. Well, they did so again recently. And this new, highly interactive site, is even easier to use than their last rebuild and saves us time.
The web address is https://msc.fema.gov. Scrolling down below the message Welcome to FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center, it reads “Looking for a Flood Map?” on the left. Below it is an input box as shown below. You can input an address, location or longitude/latitude coordinates.
I typed in an address for a condominium that we recently helped to get approved with FHA. Part of one of the buildings was noted as being in a flood zone. You can see from below, entering the address brought up map panel 25017C0116E (in blue letters).
The shaded area outlined in teal displays the boundaries of the flood map panel. The red indicator shows the relative location of the address. This is extremely helpful in locating the property. Previously, we had to open Google Maps and cross-reference it with the flood map. In the box to the right, there is an option to view the panel, which will open a new window.
Another improvement in the picture above is located over to the left where it reads "Letters of Map Change". There, one can access if there have been any Revisions, Amendments or Revalidations to the flood map in question. Previously, these were located in a different area of the site. [Incidentally, we were able to obtain a Letter of Map Amendment for this condominium project which can be found by clicking “Amendments”]
The new window looks like the picture below. You can see how time-consuming it might be to locate a property without being given its relative location. Luckily, we know it’s in the bottom-right (which I outlined with a red box).
In the image below, I have zoomed in quite a bit to show the building that was in question and outlined it in white. We can see that the Flood Zone AE intersects the building in two locations. The Association paid for an Elevation Certificate and we submitted a request to obtain a Letter of Map Amendment, which was approved in July.
I would estimate that the new site saves us up to 10 minutes per submission, which may not sound like a lot but adds up to about 3 hours per month!
If you have questions on how to use the site, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
The Condominium Project Approval Team at ReadySetLoan is dedicated to helping condominium projects across the nation to obtain their approvals with FHA and the VA or become recertified with FHA. We have assisted nearly 200 condominiums and we can help your association.
ReadySetLoan is an active member of the Connecticut and New England chapters of the Community Associations Institute (CAI) and is a frequent contributor to Common Interest Magazine as an expert in FHA/VA condominium project approvals.
Please contact us with any questions regarding FHA or VA condominium project approvals. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 404-433-4565. I will be happy to answer any of your questions.
FHA/VA Condo Approval Specialist
404-433-4565 Cell Phone
860-644-3772 Fax Phone
Check out our article in Common Interest magazine on page 19!