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Harvey Recovery Panel Summary


Repairs both in and out of the floodplain: 
  • May require a building permit only if moving, replacing, or eliminating structural components such a as walls, joists, and rafters. 
  • Will require a trade permit if electrical, plumbing, or HVAC work is being done. Contractors can and should obtain this permit 
  • You do not need a permit for: replacing any flooring, countertops, paint, trim work, or anything cosmetic that does not affect the structure of your home

Repairs that are not substantially damaged in the floodplain:
All of the above as well as a floodplain development permit to start flood damage repair if you are
  • In the floodplain AND the total cost to repair your home is $10,000 or more 
            a. You can tell if you are in the floodplain by visiting www.gims.houstontx.gov/FloodplainWAB or you can                 call the City of Houston Floodplain Management Office (FMO) at 832-394-8854 
            b. To get the permit: You will need a building permit applications and assigned project number, repair                 cost information (flood insurance proof of loss document or project cost estimate form from the city                 website), HCAD market value information or private appraisal or pre-damage market value of structure                 only AND/OR an elevation certificate with no value information required.
            c. An elevation certificate is defined by the FMO as: A statement from a Registered Professional                 Land Surveyor (RPLS), registered in the State of Texas on the most current FEMA form certifying the                 elevation of the lowest floor of a structure, other critical elevations and documenting the foundation type                 and other features of the structure.

Repairs that are substantially damaged in the floodplain:
  • What does substantially damaged mean? The damage of any origin (such as the recent flood event) is of sufficient magnitude that the cost of restoring the structure to its pre-damage condition equals or exceeds 50% of the market value of the structure. 
  • The market value of the structure does not include land value. 
  • Substantially Damaged = Cost to repair/market value of the building ≥ 50 percent 

Raising Your Home to Flood Protection Elevation (FPE)
  • The objective is to get above the Base Flood Elevation (BFE) 
  • Elevated Foundation Methods:
            a. Elevated Foundation Method
            b. Slab on grade method 
            c. Masonry house – remove roof, extend walls, raise floor 
            d. New house method – up to two feet dirt pad
  • The average cost listed on the internet is $3-5k but the real cost is more like $40-50k and up 

Permitting the Job
  • Permitting is a must for Realex – Protection on both sides
  • Required for electrical, plumbing and structure but not for carpentry, painting and flooring.
  • For a simple build back- no permitting is required. Only plumbing and electrical. Make sure to take pictures of the insulation.
  • If in the 100 year floodplain or floodway, you will need a permit from the flood department and many times it will require a site visit. 

Bringing your Home up to Code or Upgrading
  • Mechanical - You do not need to bring it up to code for repair to existing but yes for replacement. Keep in mind compatibility with air handler
  • Plumbing - Yes you will need to bring it up to code if equipment was under water. If walls open - go ahead and replace gas lines and galvanized. 
  • Electrical - most people think it’s just wires, “What’s the big deal.” Wires can suck up water just like insulation. An electrician needs to inspect your damage