If you have determined that your building lies in a flood zone, a Flood Elevation Certificate can tell you how high your building was built in relation to that flood zone. These certificates are required for all new construction and substantial improvements to a building. An Elevation Certificate is an important document that every property owner should have, and in case of a disaster, would demonstrate to city authorities whether your building is below, at or above the required elevation.
If the Elevation Certificate shows that your building is lower than the required elevation, then the “50% rule” would apply to your building. This rule means that if your building is in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) and is damaged and/or improved to an amount greater than 50% of its market value, it will have to be raised to meet the current elevation requirement.