Long Beach Island New Jersey Real Estate | LBI NJ Real Estate | Nathan Colmer

LBI Real Estate Buyers

Nathan Colmer | Van Dyk Group

C: 609.290.4293 | O: 609.492.1511

LBI Flood Zones


Flood zones were established by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help understand the risks associated with areas of the United States located in a flood zone. Long Beach Island NJ is grouped into two primary flood zones. They are an "A" flood zone and a "V" flood zone, each with different subgroups such as AE, AO, and VE. The "A" flood zones are generally considered the "less risky" areas on LBI, and therefore they can, in some cases, be a safer investment for buyers in the LBI real estate market.




LBI Flood Zone | LBI Flood Insurance | LBI Real Estate Buyers

LBI Real Estate Buyers




Long Beach Island Flood Insurance and Long Beach Island Flood Zones When Buying a Home in the LBI Real Estate Market

When buying a home in the LBI real estate market, flood insurance is a topic that comes up very frequently. Since Hurricane Sandy, flooding and the cost of flood insurance are at the forefront of nearly every buyer and seller’s mind on Long Beach Island. While it is necessary to understand how a flood insurance policy is rated and what areas of Long Beach Island are more or less prone to flooding, the flood zone can play a surprisingly significant role in determining the flood insurance premium. Understanding the flood zones on LBI can have a considerable impact when buying a home in the LBI real estate market as it can have a material effect on the cost of flood insurance. Homes with a high cost of flood insurance will be worth much less in the LBI real estate market than a home that meets or exceeds current regulations. Therefore, understanding the current flood policy can directly impact the price you should-or should not-pay for a house.


LBI Flood Zone | LBI Flood Insurance | LBI Real Estate Buyers

Flood Zones on Long Beach Island NJ

The federal government and FEMA have several designated flood zones for Long Beach Island and the entire nation. They are:

  • Flood Zone A
  • Flood Zone AE
  • Flood Zone AH
  • Flood Zone AO
  • Flood Zone AR
  • Flood Zone A99
  • Flood Zone V

Most of Long Beach Island NJ lies in either an “A” flood zone or a “V” flood zone. The “V” flood zone, which stands for velocity, in short, means that the property may sustain a high-velocity situation meaning extreme winds and direct wave impact. V zones must therefore adhere to more restrictive building codes designed to ensure the safety of the structure and the houses around it. V flood zones are usually limited to oceanfront homes but they can be found in other areas of Long Beach Island, for example, homes that are one or two off the beach and some bayfront areas. In addition to those listed above, there are also special case flood zones, for example, flood zone X; however, these areas tend to deal more with flooding caused by excessive rains and runoff. The X zone is generally considered to be the best zone with the lowest cost of insurance.





LBI Flood Zone | LBI Flood Insurance | LBI Real Estate Buyers

A and AE Flood Zones on Long Beach Island NJ

FEMA defines an A and AE flood zone as having a 1% chance of an annual flood. Homeowners in an A or AE flood zone on Long Beach Island can expect the following:

  • Flood insurance rates on LBI may be less expensive than a "V" zone
  • Building codes will be less restrictive in an A or AE flood zone on Long Beach Island.
  • Breakaway wall foundations are not required (although they are recommended)

Flood insurance in an A or AE flood zone is often expensive than a V zone due to FEMA's interpretation that flooding will be less destructive when it occurs. That said, recent mapping has shown some V zones to be safer and, therefore, may have a lower cost of insurance. For a property to be zoned to a V zone on LBI, FEMA must ascertain that the property is subject property will sustain the direct impact of a 3 foot or higher wave. In FEMA's eyes, properties on LBI in an A or AE flood zone do not share this risk. For this reason, homes in A and AE flood zones can be built on a concrete block foundation with flood vents rather than the breakaway wall system required in a V zone (although most are still built on pilings). For some buyers, an A or AE flood zone will be more attractive in the LBI real estate market, so the home's zoning can directly impact the home's value.





LBI Flood Zone | LBI Flood Insurance | LBI Real Estate Buyers

New Construction in a V Zone on Long Beach Island NJ

If you are planning to build a new home in the V zone on LBI, your architect will explain the exact guidelines involved with the construction of the house, but a few points to consider are:

  • Everything below base flood elevation must be sacrificial, and no living space can be below base flood elevation when considering New Construction in a V Zone on Long Beach Island NJ
  • The exterior walls must consist of a breakaway wall system
  • The garage slab must be no more than 4″ thick and cannot be supported by pilings or other means.

In short, new construction in a V zone on Long Beach Island NJ must sustain high-velocity winds and water damage such that the entire underneath of the house can be "washed away," and the water may flow freely below. It is imperative that you check with your architect to ensure the home's design is up to the current code, which can often change and with very little notice.





LBI Flood Zone | LBI Flood Insurance | LBI Real Estate Buyers

Long Beach Island Real Estate Flood Insurance Costs

Before discussing the insurance costs for an elevated home, we must first understand what determines the price of flood insurance on Long Beach Island. Flood insurance is based on several factors, the most important of which are the property's elevation and the flood zone. Contrary to popular opinion, not all homes need to be raised to avoid high insurance costs. The height of a property is determined by combining the natural ground elevation with the building's foundation. With most ground elevations on LBI being no lower than 3-4 feet, many homes on Long Beach Island are already above base flood elevation or only about 1-2 feet below the base flood elevation at worst. An elevated home, meaning a home built high on pilings or on an extended block foundation, will see far less expensive flood insurance rates than a house at or below base flood elevation. The flood insurance cost for an elevated home on Long Beach Island will depend on the following:

  • The height above base flood elevation
  • The number of flood vents in the foundation
  • The flood zone

Most properties will see their best insurance rate 3 or 4 feet above base flood elevation. By building to the maximum height allowed, not only does the risk of damage to the property diminish, so too does the cost of insurance. The number of flood vents in the foundation also plays a significant role. Recently, a home for sale on Long Beach Island was built well above the base flood elevation; however, it had no flood vents. The insurance premium for this particular property was roughly $2,600/ year. If the correct number of flood vents were installed, that premium would drop to only $600/ year! Lastly, the flood zone plays a role. Most of Long Beach Island is in an "A" flood zone. A property in a "V" flood zone used to see a higher insurance rate, but with new ratings and mapping being used, this is no longer always the case. Most V zones in the LBI real estate market are primarily located along the oceanfront and parts of the bayfront compared to the "A" zone, which covers most of Long Beach Island. 




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Nathan Colmer



The Van Dyk Group

12800 Long Beach Blvd

Beach Haven Terrace NJ 08008