Your insurance company may require you to have an elevation certificate completed by a Professional Surveyor.
This certificate shows how the ground floor of your structures compare to the base flood elevation established by FEMA
If you do not have an elevation certificate, then FEMA basically assumes the worst, and charges you a high rate on your Flood Insurance.
Cornerstone Surveying recommends getting an elevation certificate before purchasing a property if the property lies in an established flood hazard zone.
Doing this will help you decide if the factual insurance rate is something you can live with or not.
There are several ways to find out if your property lies in a flood hazard area. A Professional surveyor can find out at no charge.
You can also check with the seller's real estate agent, the appraiser of the land or even the lending institution. Any of these professionals can help you find out if your property is affected.
A review by a professional surveyor and/or a professional engineer can help you determine your options if your structures or property lie in a designated flood hazard area.
An elevation certificate is usually required at the very least. But in some situations, a LOMA (Letter Of Map Ammendment) can be used to actually remove a structure or even an entire property out of the flood hazard area, if they are found to lie higher than FEMA's established base flood elevation.