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Sources of Information on Flood-Resistant Design and Construction1

Michael T. Olexa, Jana Caracciolo, and Lauren Grant 2


The primary purpose of the publications referenced in this article is to assist engineers, architects, contractors, and property owners in locating detailed information on how to design and construct flood-resistant buildings and structures.

Appropriate design and construction practices are necessary for any site development, including new and substantially improved structures. Requests for information on construction requirements should be directed to the community. The state National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Coordinator and the appropriate Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) regional offices will also provide relevant information.

FEMA offers a wide array of materials for land development professionals and designated communities regarding NFIP construction requirements in identified flood-prone areas. The following list is an overview of a number of FEMA materials related to flood-resistant design and construction.

Online FEMA Resources

Other FEMA Resources

FEMA resources are available for ordering via telephone, toll-free, at 1-800-480-2520.

  • Design Guidelines for Flood Damage Reduction, FEMA-15

  • Elevated Residential Structures, FEMA-54

  • Coastal Construction Manual, FEMA-55

  • Protecting Manufactured Homes from Floods and Other Hazard, FEMA-85

  • Floodproofing Non-Residential Structures. FEMA-102

  • Retrofitting Flood-Prone Residential Structures, FEMA-114

  • Reducing Losses in High Risk Flood Hazard Areas: A Guide for Local Officials, FEMA-116

  • Answers to Questions About Substantially Damaged Buildings, FEMA-213

  • Repairing Your Flooded Home, FEMA-234

  • Mitigation of Flood and Erosion Damage to Residential Buildings in Coastal Areas, FEMA-257

  • Guide to Flood Maps. A how-to booklet for reading Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMS), FEMA-258

  • Flood Emergency and Residential Repair Handbook, FEMA-13*

  • Engineering Principles and Practices for Retrofitting Flood Prone Residential Buildings, FEMA-259

  • Managing Floodplain Development in Approximate Zone A Areas: A Guide for Obtaining and Developing Base (100-Year) Flood Elevations, FEMA-265

  • Protecting Floodplain Resources, FEMA-268

  • Homeowner's Guide to Retrofitting: Six Ways to Protect Your House from Flooding, FEMA-312

*Note: FEMA is the Federal Emergency Management Agency; FIMA is the Flood Insurance and Mitigation Administration, a division of FEMA.


1. This document is DH203 (formerly DH0435), one of a series of the Food and Resource Economics Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date June 1998. Revised January 2016 and October 2019. Visit the EDIS website at for the currently supported version of this publication. The funding for the revision of this publication was provided by the James S. and Dorothy F. Wershow Endowment. This publication is part of the Disaster Handbook, a component of the Comprehensive Disaster Preparedness and Recovery Education Module. There are ten Disaster Handbook documents by Olexa, Caracciolo, and Grant: DH138, DH199, DH200, DH201, DH202, DH203, DH204, DH206, DH215, and DH219.
2. Michael T. Olexa, professor, Food and Resource Economics Department, and director, Center for Agricultural and Natural Resource Law; Jana Caracciolo, student, Levin College of Law, University of Florida; and Lauren Grant, student, Levin College of Law; UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

Note: This publication is designed to provide accurate, current, and authoritative information on the subject. However, since the laws, regulations, administrative rulings, and court decisions on which it is based are subject to constant revision, portions of this publication could become outdated at any time. This publication is distributed with the understanding that the authors are not engaged in rendering legal advice or opinions, and the information contained herein should not be regarded, or relied upon, as a substitute for legal advice or opinion. For these reasons, the utilization of these materials by any person constitutes an agreement to hold harmless the authors, the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, and the University of Florida for any liability claims, damages, or expenses that may be incurred by any person as a result of reference to or reliance on the information contained in this fact sheet.