National Flood Insurance Program
Standard homeowners and commercial property insurance policies do not cover flood losses. The City of Moorhead participates in the NFIP by adopting and enforcing floodplain management requirements established by FEMA and the State of Minnesota that are intended to reduce future flood damage. In exchange, the NFIP makes federally-backed flood insurance available to homeowners, renters, and business owners. Lenders are prohibited from issuing mortgages for properties in the 100-year floodplain unless the property is covered by flood insurance.
As a result the City's participation in the NFIP, all property owners in the City can purchase flood insurance whether or not they are in the 100-year floodplain.
is a 30 day waiting period on new flood insurance policies.
Do I need to purchase flood insurance?
If your property or structure is within the SFHA, you
must purchase flood insurance if you have a federally-backed mortgage.
The interactive GIS map under the Floodplain Maps link at the top of this page allows
you to search for your property by address and to view and print a detailed map
showing how the new 100-year floodplain (SFHA)
may affect your property.
Who do I contact to purchase flood insurance?
Your local insurance agent is best qualified to
answer questions about flood insurance.
For frequently asked questions about flood insurance please check out the FAQ sheet.
Preferred Risk Policy Eligibility
As of January 1, 2011, a new flood insurance rating option was implemented to reduce the financial burden placed on property owners whose buildings are newly mapped into a high-risk flood area.
Preferred Risk Policy Eligibility Extension
FEMA Extends Preferred Risk Policies for Homeowners (August 21, 2012)
FEMA WYO Bulletin
Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012
Impact of changes to NFIP fact sheet
To recognize policyholders who have remained loyal customers by the NFIP by maintaining continuous coverage and/or who have built in compliance with the effective FIRM at the time their home was constructed, FEMA has "Grandfather Rules" to allow such policyholders to benefit by lower insurance ratings for their home.
FEMA Fact Sheet for Homeowners Grandfathering Rules.
FEMA Fact Sheet For Insurance Agents NFIP Grandfather Rules
FEMA Floodplain Terminology
Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM)
The FIRM is developed by FEMA for floodplain management and insurance purposes. A FIRM will generally show base flood elevations (BFE), flood zones (including the SFHA), and floodplain boundaries.
Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA)
The SFHA is an area having a higher risk of flooding (1% annual chance of
flooding). This includes Zone AE in the City of Moorhead, and is also known as the 100-year floodplain.
The channel of a river or other watercourse and that portion of the
adjacent floodplain that must remain open (free of obstruction) to permit passage of the base or
flood without cumulatively increasing the water surface elevation more
than a designated height.
Any land area susceptible to being inundated by flood water from any
- 100-year floodplain - (Zone AE) 1% annual chance of flooding.
Statistically, this area has a 26% chance of flooding over the life of a 30-year mortgage even though the annual chance of flooding is 1%.
- 500-year floodplain - (Zone X) 0.2% chance of flooding.
Structures in this zone are not required to purchase flood insurance.
Base Flood Elevation (BFE)
The elevation of surface water resulting from a
flood that has a 1% chance of equaling or exceeding that level in any given year.
The BFE is shown on the FIRM. The BFE is synonymous with the 100-year flood stage.
Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA)
An official amendment to the currently effective FIRM which establishes that a property is not located in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA). A LOMA can only be issued only by FEMA. A LOMA does not physically change the official FIRM.
Letter of Map Revision (LOMR)
An official amendment to the currently effective FIRM. A LOMR can only be issued by FEMA. The LOMR can modify flood zones, delineations, and elevations. A LOMR does not physically change the official FIRM.
How Can I Change or Correct a FIRM?
FEMA has established administrative procedures for correcting the effective FIRM based on new or revised scientific or technical data. These changes are implemented with written documents and are not physically depicted on the FIRM.
Please not these forms require certification by a professional engineer and review by City staff before submission to FEMA.
- Learn more about the process for changing a FIRM
- Forms needed to request changes to a FIRM
- MT-EZ Form - Used for
a Single Lot LOMA (Letter of Map Amendment; NO FILL involved).
- MT-1 Forms - Used for: (1) Multi-Lot LOMAs, & (2) LOMR-F (Letters of Map Revision based on FILL)
- MT-2 Forms - Used for changes to FIRMs based on better data (i.e., due to projects like bridges, culverts, flood control levees, etc.).
- FEMA LOMA / LOMR-F Tutorial Series -
Learn more about LOMAs and LOMR-F.
The City of Moorhead maintains on file at the Engineering Department elevation certificates for some properties. Please contact Andrea Crabtree Nayes at (218) 299-5387 or Jody Bertrand at (218) 299-5390 for futher assistance.
Community Rating System
The NFIP's Community Rating System (CRS) recognizes community efforts beyond the minimum standards by reducing flood insurance premiums for the community's property owners. The City of Moorhead participates in the CRS program and is currently qualified as a class 7 community.
Community Rating System
For FIRM Zone Information, please contact Andrea Crabtree Nayes at (218) 299-5387.
For Floodplain Information for your home or business, please contact the City of Moorhead Engineering Department at (218) 299-5390.