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Protecting Homes

This page provides information about the two areas the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration supports--Mitigation and flood insurance. Various types of pre and post-disaster mitigation grants are discussed.

Find out how FEMA works with communities across the nation to help homeowners, contractors, architects, local codes' officials, and engineers build smarter and safer homes. This is called Mitigation.

FEMA also manages the National Flood Insurance Program which provides financial protection for catastrophic losses to homeowners, renters and business owners.

The FEMA Building Science Branch develops and produces guidance that focuses on creating disaster-resilient communities to reduce loss of life and property. They conduct post-disaster engineering investigations for both man-made and natural hazard events. They take a lead role in developing publications, guidance materials, tools, technical bulletins, and recovery advisories that incorporate the most up-to-date building codes, floodproofing requirements, seismic design standards, and wind design requirements for new construction and the repair of existing buildings. Here are some of the branch's products:

FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) grant programs provide funding for eligible mitigation activities that reduce disaster losses and protect life and property from future disaster damages. Currently, FEMA administers the following HMA grant programs:

FEMA's HMA grants are provided to eligible applicants (states/tribes/territories) that, in turn, provide subgrants to local governments and communities. Contact your local (county, city, tribal) emergency management office for more information on applying.

The HMA grant programs provide funding opportunities for pre- and post-disaster mitigation. While the statutory origins of the programs differ, all share the common goal of reducing the risk of loss of life and property due to natural hazards.

Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) HMGP assists in implementing long-term hazard mitigation measures following Presidential disaster declarations. Funding is available to implement projects in accordance with state, tribal and local priorities.

Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) PDM provides funds on an annual basis for hazard mitigation planning and the implementation of mitigation projects prior to a disaster. The goal of the PDM program is to reduce overall risk to the population and structures, while at the same time, also reducing reliance on federal funding from actual disaster declarations.

Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) FMA provides funds on an annual basis so that measures can be taken to reduce or eliminate risk of flood damage to buildings insured under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

Repetitive Flood Claims (RFC) RFC provides funds on an annual basis to reduce the risk of flood damage to individual properties insured under the NFIP that have had one or more claim payments for flood damages. RFC provides up to 100% federal funding for projects in communities that meet the reduced capacity requirements.

The National Flood Insurance Program makes federally-backed flood insurance available to homeowners, renters and business owners in more than 22,000 communities across the nation. Just a few inches of water from a flood can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage. Over the past 5 years, the average paid flood insurance claim was nearly $34,000. Flood insurance is the best way to protect yourself from devastating financial loss. Flood insurance is available to homeowners, renters, condo owners/renters and commercial owners/renters. Costs vary depending on how much insurance is purchased, what it covers and the property's flood risk. All policy forms provide coverage for buildings and contents. However, you might want to discuss insuring personal property with your agent, since contents coverage is optional. Typically, there's a 30-day waiting period from date of purchase before your policy goes into effect. That means now is the best time to buy flood insurance.

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Last Updated: 
02/04/2020 - 20:42