- Miller Samuel Real Estate Appraisers & Consultants - http://www.millersamuel.com -

Incentivized by FEMA, ‘Houses on Stilts’

Nearly a year ago, my wife and I went for a drive in the next town over from where we live in Connecticut and stumbled across a slew of houses being modified to the FEMA Base Flood Elevation (BFE) [1]. It was eye opening for me since I never envisioned a house – especially houses built 30-50 years ago – as so readily moveable. As a kid I had observed my dad have his real estate office moved 2 doors down so he could sell his lot to an adjacent condo developer….and 40-years later both of those buildings are standing.

Note all the”tall” garages.

IMG_3703 [2]
IMG_3707 [3]
IMG_4555 [4]
IMG_4557 [5]

It also raises valuation issues. How will an appraiser handle the valuation of the house next to the house that was raised? We may see the market apply a penalty to the house not on stilts in a flood zone.

This was a home being lifted last spring…

IMG_3715 [6]

and with the work complete…

IMG_4559 [7]

What would a potential buyer of the house next door (in a flood zone) think?
IMG_4560 2 [8]