Flood Elevation Certificates

FEMA Flood Elevation Certificate Service

Flooding on the riverfront homes of the Susquehanna River off of Route 11/15. From AccuWeather.com’s Jesse Ferrel.

Is my home located in Flood Hazard Zone?

Flood Hazard Zones are typically found in low-lying, river or stream shore areas. FEMA has determined Base Flood Elevations for most Flood Hazard Zones. The Base Flood Elevation is an elevation above the mean sea level which indicates the predicted water surface elevation resulting from a flood that has a one percent chance of equaling or exceeding that elevation in any given year. You may use the FEMA Map Service Center address search feature to determine if your property is located in a Flood Hazard Zone or simply contact us at 570.752.4433 for assistance.

What is an Elevation Certificate?

FEMA has developed a standardized Elevation Certificate form that is used to gather elevation data for accurately assessing flood risks to structures located in Flood Hazard Zones. An Elevation Certificate must be prepared and certified by a Pennsylvania licensed Land Surveyor. An Elevation Certificate contains:

  • Accurate determination of Flood Zone and Base Flood Elevation (BFE)
  • Geographic location of structure (latitude & longitude)
  • Ground elevations adjacent to structure foundation
  • Type of structure and foundation system
  • Elevation of lowest storage level (crawlspace, basement, slab, etc.)
  • Elevation of lowest living area
  • Elevation of mechanical equipment (furnace, hot water heater, etc.).
  • Photographs of the structure

Do I need an Elevation Certificate?

Anyone may voluntarily purchase flood insurance for their home, but if you have recently purchased, refinanced a home or are renewing an existing policy located in a Flood Hazard Zone with a federally guaranteed mortgage, flood insurance is mandatory. When obtaining flood insurance, most providers require an Elevation Certificate prior to issuing a policy. If your insurance provider already has an Elevation Certificate on file, it is most likely transferable.

How do I obtain an Elevation Certificate?

In order to obtain an Elevation Certificate, you must contact and retain the services of a Pennsylvania licensed Land Surveyor authorized by the Pennsylvania professional services registration board to provide land surveying services.

PCI has professional, licensed Land Surveyors available to provide Elevation Certificates throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania.

What information will the surveyor need from me?

Essentially, the only information the surveyor will need is the address of the property, copy of the deed and the name and contact information of the person responsible for executing the Agreement and issuing payment.

Will the surveyor require access to my house?

If your house has a walkout basement, a slab foundation, or an accessible crawlspace foundation, the surveyor will most likely be able to complete the survey without accessing the house.

If your house has a full basement, the surveyor will need access to determine the elevation of the basement floor and the square footage of the enclosed area.

How long will it take PCI to prepare my Elevation Certificate?

An elevation certificate can usually be provided within one week to ten days. If your situation requires immediate action, we will make every effort to accommodate your schedule.

About Our Services:

Peters Consultants, Inc.’s (PCI) Survey Department offers an Elevation Certificate Service for Northeastern Pennsylvania property owners with structures located in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) designated Flood Hazard Zones. Since FEMA established the National Flood Insurance Program, PCI has provided Elevation Certificates for countless homeowners along the rivers, streams and tributaries of Northeastern Pennsylvania. All surveys are conducted in strict compliance with established FEMA guidelines.

Contact PCI at 570.752.4433, by email through the contact us page or at info1@petersconsultants.com for a free estimate.