National Flood Insurance Program
The new Elevation Certificate is finally here and can be downloaded at www.fema.gov/flood-insurance/find-form/underwriting. Scroll down the page to “Elevation Certificate Form & Instructions. Select “Download File”. You must download the file to your computer to use, as opening it in the web browser will most likely result in an “outdated PDF viewer” message.
Reminder: Effective immediately. NO TRANSITION PERIOD. New forms are required as of this date. This is consistent with FEMA Bulletin W-16040.
The City of Doral Building Department Floodplain Management Division is encouraging EC Certifiers, including surveyors, engineers, and architects, to begin using the new form. Questions and comments can be forwarded to Floodplain Manager, Ingrys Farias, firstname.lastname@example.org or 305-593-6700 ext 3108.
FAQs Frequently Asked Questions
1) Does my homeowner’s insurance policy cover floods?
No, it does not. Flood insurance must be purchased separately. Check with your insurance provider on all your policies. Generally, homeowner’s “windstorm” policies will cover wind-driven rain and wind events (e.g. hurricanes). Flood insurance covers rising water.
2) Does flood insurance cover all my personal items inside the house?
Flood insurance provides coverage for the property itself (e.g. walls, floors, electrical, etc.). You may also purchase separate “contents” insurance to cover personal items.
3) I am aware that I am in the special flood hazard area (SFHA), but I have never flooded before. Why do I need flood insurance?
Federal law requires that all properties within the special flood hazard area with a Federally-backed mortgage are to have flood insurance.
4) I have paid off my mortgage and I live within the special flood hazard area. Do I need to purchase flood insurance?
No. Once the mortgage has been paid off, it is not required. However, FEMA recommends that property-owners maintain flood insurance.
5) I am outside of the special flood hazard area. Do I need to buy flood insurance?
The Florida Legislature passed a bill during the Special Session 2022 D, requiring all property owner’s insured by Citizen’s Insurance, to have flood insurance no matter in which flood zone the property exists.
6) How can I remove my property from a Special Flood zone?
It may be possible to request to remove your property from the Special Flood Hazard Area zone depending on how and when your structure was built. Reach out to your local Floodplain Manager for more information on a Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA). A LOMA may be possible for your property but will require additional documentation to be provided by an engineer or surveyor.
7) How can I get information about my current property flood zone?
You may visit https://www.cityofdoral.com/all-departments/building/flood-information/. This site provides different ways to determine your flood zone. You may also call the Floodplain Manager at 305-593-6725 (ext 3108) with the address or folio number of the property.
8) Does the Community assist us with flood insurance discounts?
Yes, the City of Doral participates in the NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program), which allows us to also participate in the volunteer program called the Community Rating System (CRS). Due to the city’s participation in both programs, our efforts currently provide a 20% discount on flood insurance in the special flood hazard areas and 10% on properties outside the special flood hazard areas as a Class 6 Community. Check your policy binder for more information.
DORAL IS A CRS CLASS 6 COMMUNITY
The National Flood Insurance Program's (NFIP) Community Rating System (CRS) is a voluntary incentive program* that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP requirements. As a result, flood insurance premium rates are discounted to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from the community actions meeting the three goals of the CRS:
- Reduce flood damage to insurable property;
- Strengthen and support the insurance aspects of the NFIP, and
- Encourage a comprehensive approach to floodplain management.
For more information about the NFIP, visit floodsmart.gov
CRS CLASS 6 COMMUNITY
Flood insurance policy holders in the special flood hazard area (SFHA) receive a 20% discount on their policy. Standard flood policy holders outside the SFHA receive a 10% discount.
There is currently $1.1 billion of flood insurance coverage protecting property owners in Doral at an annual cost of $1.8 million. The discounts represent an annual savings of more than $294,000.
*CRS is a voluntary program however compliance with all NFIP regulations is required to maintain eligibility for flood insurance, flood insurance discounts, FEMA public disaster assistance, and FEMA grants.
National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)
In 1968, Congress created the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to provide affordable flood insurance to individuals who live in areas with the greatest risk of flooding called Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs). The SFHA is that portion of
the floodplain subject to inundation by the base flood (1% annual chance) and/or flood related erosion hazards. The SFHAs are typically depicted in the new format Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) as Zones A, AE, AH, AO, AR, A99, and V.
Development may take place within the SFHA, provided that development complies with local floodplain management ordinances, which must meet the minimum Federal requirement.
The NFIP makes federally backed flood insurance available in communities that agree to adopt and enforce floodplain management ordinances to reduce future flood damage. This is important because property owners who hold a federally backed mortgage must purchase flood insurance if the property is located within the SFHAs.
During the rainy season, the continuous downpours saturate and, on occasion, over saturate the ground; reducing the capacity of the Stormwater Drainage System. This may cause some temporary flooding along city streets and/or private property, creating potentially dangerous conditions.
Effective immediately, per FEMA requirements, all Elevation Certificates signed and sealed on February 21, 2020 or later must be completed using this new form, even if draft versions were previously submitted using the old expired
Elevation Certificate Form and Instructions
The City of Doral maintains a database that contains copies of finished construction elevation certificates for all new and substantially improved buildings. To see if an elevation certificate is on file for your building,
please click here.
WARNING: A private appraisal is required when an elevation certificate is NOT AVAILABLE or if the certificate shows the building does not comply with current FEMA regulations.
Click here https://floodpointusa.com/ for a private appraisal checklist including an Actual Cash Value (ACV) Guide and a free calculator for use by private appraisals, building owners, design professionals or contractors. Checklist also available in Forms Library here.
FLOOD WARNING AND RESPONSE
The City of Doral Public Works Department has developed a flood warning and response plan. The purpose of the plan is to provide information for early flood recognition and warning dissemination, establish response and emergency response actions, establish post-flood recovery actions, and develop community awareness. Through the implementation of the Flood Warning and Response Plan (FWRP) the City’s main goal of minimizing public and private property losses, while protecting the public safety in an efficient and cost-effective manner is achieved. The FWRP does not prevent flood disasters, but enables public response actions to be timely. Flood Warning and Response Plan
LOCAL MITIGATION STRATEGY
The City of Doral is an active participant in the Miami-Dade County Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS). The LMS is a whole community initiative designed to reduce or eliminate the long-term risk to human life and property from hazards. The LMS plan is
a multi-volume plan that documents the planning process and addresses mitigation measures in relation to the hazard risk and vulnerability assessment of Miami-Dade County. For more information please visit the Miami-Dade County LMS website
Part 7 of the LMS specifically addresses flooding, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), and the Community Rating System (CRS):
Know your Hazard
Protecting the Natural Functions of the Floodplain
Flood Insurance in Low Risk Zones
Real time Rain Gauge
Know your hazard
… that floods are the most common natural disaster?
- Your property may be located in a SFHA. To determine the flood zone for your property contact the City of Doral Building Department for a flood zone determination at 305-593-6700 or Use Doral 311 first enter the address, then in the service area choose “BUILDING”, then in the service type choose “Flood Zone Determination”.
- … and even if you’re not in a SFHA (Special Flood Hazard Area), FLOODS HAPPEN. Mother Nature doesn’t know how to read FIRMs (Flood Insurance Rate Maps). Even Zone “X” is STILL a low-risk flood zone.
- The city of Doral is currently rated at a “Class 6” in the CRS (Community Rating System) Program and policyholders receive a 20% discount on insurance premiums for properties in the SFHA (Special Flood Hazard Area) and 10% in non=SFHA due to the City’s participation in the program and strict enforcement of the floodplain ordinance.
Insure your property
Did you know that Homeowner’s and/or windstorm insurance does not cover flood damage to a structure?
- Federally backed mortgages (FHA, VA, FNMA etc.) and most private mortgages (Conventional) require flood insurance. In the event that your mortgage does not have this provision or if you own your property free and clear, you should still consider purchasing flood insurance. Remember, there is a thirty (30) day waiting period before the policy becomes effective. There are two exceptions: (1) If the initial purchase of flood insurance is in connection with the making, increasing, extending, or renewing of a loan, there is no waiting period. (2) If the initial purchase of flood insurance is made during the 13-month period following the revision or update of a FIRM for the community, there is a 1-day waiting period.
- The City participates in the Community Rating System (CRS), which provides discounted flood insurance rates on all policies written in the City.
Protection from flooding
Here are some safety tips to consider, if you are ever faced with flooding.
- If you are advised to evacuate, turn off all utilities at the main switches or valves. Disconnect electrical appliances, but do not touch any electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.
- Designate a place where your family can rendezvous if an evacuation order is issued.
- Rehearse your evacuation plan with all household members. Plan to leave early to avoid traffic delays.
- Drowning is the number one cause of flood deaths. Currents can be deceptive; six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet.
- Look before you step. The ground and floors may be covered with debris and mud.
- If you walk in standing water, use a pale or stick to ensure that the ground is still there.
- Stay away from power lines and electrical wires. Electrocution is the number two flood killer. Electrical currents can run through water. Report downed power lines to Florida Power & Light at (305) 442-8770.
- Do not attempt to drive through large puddles or moving flood waters.
- Do not disregard road barriers, the road or bridge may be washed out.
- Look out for animals, especially snakes that may have been displaced by the flood.
- Be alert for gas leaks. If you use natural gas, use a flashlight to inspect for damage. Do not smoke or use candles.
- Remember to arrange for your pets. Most evacuation centers will not accept pets. Make plans in advance to board your pets in a kennel or with friends outside the hazard area.
Protect your property
- Place sandbags or similar barriers between floodwaters and your structure.
- Place your valuables and important papers in a plastic bags or waterproof containers and relocate them to the highest floor.
- Secure your boat. If possible, store it inside a garage or warehouse. If outside, make sure the boat is secure to the trailer and the trailer is tied down.
All new buildings or renovations to existing buildings require permits. These permits must be obtained prior to commencement of construction activities.
- Before you build, alter, re-grade, or fill your property contact the Building Department at 305-593-6700.
- Know the substantial improvement and damage rules. Contact the Building Department 305-593-6700 or
download Substantial Improvement/Substantial Damage Desk Reference
- If you see any building or filling without a permit posted, please call our Code Compliance Department at 305-593-6680.
Protect the natural floodplain functions
Proper drainage helps reduce the risk of flooding. It is illegal for the direct or indirect entry of any solid, liquid or gaseous matter into the drainage system other than rainwater runoff. The City periodically inspects the drainage system and regularly schedules debris removal operations in order to keep the drainage system at peak performance. You can help in this process by keeping the streets clear of materials and debris that could potentially affect the drainage system.
- Please report any illegal dumping activities that may affect drainage and/or contaminate the ground water to the Public Works Department at (305) 593-6740.
For more information regarding flood damage prevention, insurance needs and requirements please call the City of Doral Building Department at (305) 593-6700.
To reduce hurricane damage, all new buildings must be constructed with hurricane storm shutters. Installation is simple but requires a building permit. Contact the Building Department at 305-593-6700 for more information.
In the event of a storm, check TV and radio sources for up-to-date information. Know what to do in the event of a hurricane watch, warning, and/or evacuation order. Create a checklist for emergency supplies, know the locations of evacuation centers,
and plan ahead for your pets. Prepare
your home before a storm to reduce potential damage.
For more information, review the Hurricane Guide on the Miami-Dade County Division of Emergency Management website or call the office at 305-468-5400. Visit Ready.gov to learn more about what to do in the event of a hurricane watch or warning in your area.
Flood Insurance in Low Risk Zones
Flood insurance is not just for properties in the floodplain. Did you know that more than 25-percent of flood insurance claims are for structures outside the 100-year floodplain? Even if your home or business is located in a low risk zone, it may still be at risk of flooding. Homeowners, renters, and business owners in low risk zones can purchase standard policies or reduced-rate “preferred risk” policies.
You can visit www.floodsmart.gov or contact your local insurance agent for more information and rates.
Doral has many resources available to help you understand your flood risk and options for mitigation. If you want to learn more about flood risk as well as the benefits of mitigation contact the Building Department at 305-593-6700. A City official can come discuss these topics with your homeowners’ association or neighborhood group. The City is also promoting education on NAI—no adverse impact floodplain management—to set local goals and reduce damages from floods. To learn more about NAI, visit www.floods.org or contact the Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM).
Doral is encouraging homeowners and developers to take action to reduce stormwater flooding by implementing low-impact development (LID) techniques. Install LID techniques, such as rain barrels and permeable pavers, to help manage stormwater on site instead of allowing it to runoff into the stormwater drainage system, which can become overwhelmed and lead to flooding.To learn more about what types of LID techniques you can implement on your property, contact the Building Department at 305-593-6700. Developers should contact the Planning Department at 305-593-6630 for advice and assistance on incorporating LID into commercial projects.
- Flood Ordinance 2015-01
- Flood Ordinance 2008-02
- Flood Ordinance 2004-01
- Flood Ordinance 2021-32
- Flood Safety Measures - Public Works
- Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) for Doral
- Flood Insurance Study (FIS) for Doral
Effective immediately, per FEMA requirements, all Elevation Certificates signed and sealed on February 21, 2020 or later must be completed using this new form, even if draft versions were previously submitted using the old expired form.
Flood Elevation Certificate and Instructions
FEMA Informational links
- Above the Flood: Elevating Your Floodprone House
- Elevated Foundation Systems
- Protecting Manufactured Homes from Floods
- Protecting Building Utilities
- Protecting Floodplain Resources
- Reducing Damage from Localized Flooding
- FEMA P-312
- Selecting Appropriate Mitigation Measures for Floodprone Structures
- FEMA additional resources and documents
- FEMA for Kids
- Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM's) and Flood Insurance Study (FIS)
- FEMA Map Service Center (MSC)
Post Disaster Resources
Recovering from a Flood:
- Starting Your Recovery Fact Sheet
- Starting Your Recovery Fact Sheet - Spanish
- How to Document Damage and Begin Cleanup
- How to Document Damage and Begin Cleanup - Spanish
- Guidelines for Flood Cleanup
- Mold Cleanup in Your Home
- Public Assistance
Filing a Flood Insurance Claim & Meeting with an Adjuster:
- How to Start Your Insurance Claim
- How to Start Your Insurance Claim - Spanish
- How to File Your Flood Insurance Claim
- After a Flood: How to Document Damage
- After a Flood: How to Document Damage - Spanish
- After a Flood: Meeting with an Adjuster
- After a Flood: Meeting with an Adjuster - Spanish
Preparedness and Reducing Future Flood Damage:
Other helpful links
- South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD)
- Florida Division of Emergency Management
- USGS Real Time Water Data for Florida
- Miami-Dade County Flood Map Property Search
- Slab on grade construction from the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service
- Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) Preparing for a Flood with Flood Insurance