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** Archived Article - please check for current information. **

October 30, 2015Flooded property owners should consult local floodplain manager before rebuilding

As South Carolina continues to recover from the flood disaster, there is an issue some could face; substantial damage defined by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

If you own a building in the floodplain or if you are unsure, please contact your local government to find out what permits are required to repair or rebuild.

Substantial damage is defined by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) as a home or structure that has incurred substantial damage is located in a special flood hazard area and the total cost of the repairs is 50 percent or more of the structures pre-event market value.

The substantial damage requirement is a long-term solution to a statewide issue. When fully implemented, neighborhoods will be much more likely to be safe and dry after the kind of storms that can devastate people’s lives. By participating in the NFIP, property owners throughout the community are able to purchase flood insurance and apply for disaster assistance. The primary goal of the NFIP is to ensure the safety of people, and to render any buildings within the community’s floodplain less vulnerable to future flood damage.

The decision about a building being substantially damaged is made at a local government level, generally by a local building official or local floodplain manger. Contact information for all local floodplain managers can be found at https://www.dnr.sc.gov/water/flood/documents/nfipadmindirectory.pdf

Local governments will be performing inspections to determine substantial damage. These inspections are separate from the disaster assistance inspections.

While this is a federal law enforced at the local level; the S.C. Department of Natural Resources Flood Mitigation Program provides technical assistance to local governments to ensure compliance with the NFIP.

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