Learn more about the differences between FEMA and Flood Factor risk assessments.
Your FEMA zone and Flood Factor are two independent risk assessments. FEMA flood maps are used to determine insurance and building code requirements, whereas the Flood Factor is used to determine flood risk to the specific home today and into the future.
While the findings of these models do not diverge starkly across the US, in some areas Flood Factor may show more or less flood risk than FEMA, simply because of differences in the methodologies employed. Flood Factor calculates flood probabilities on the property-level and accounts for changing climate conditions. A core component of the model is its ability to include rainfall events as probabilistic flood risks.
As a result, Flood Factor shows a more nuanced, property-specific flood risk, as opposed to a binary in-or-out of floodplain analysis from FEMA maps. Flood Factor uses publicly available flood risk information that shows how risk will accumulate and change over time. It is most powerful when used in conjunction with FEMA flood maps and other available state and local flood risk resources, and should be viewed as complementary to FEMA flood maps, which need to be used for building and permitting purposes.