The purpose of this page is to define a Pre-Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM), a commonly used term in floodplain management.
Pre- Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) buildings are those built before the effective date of the first Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) for a community. This means they were built before detailed flood hazard data and flood elevations were provided to the community and usually before the community enacted comprehensive regulations on floodplain regulation. Pre-FIRM buildings can be insured using "subsidized" rates. These rates are designed to help people afford flood insurance even though their buildings were not built with flood protection in mind.