National Flood Insurance Program

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is a Federal program enabling property owners and renters in participating communities to purchase insurance protection against losses from flooding. A Flood Insurance Policy is separate from a Homeowners Policy, and there is normally a 30 day waiting period before flood insurance goes into effect.

The Community Rating System (CRS) provides a discount in the flood insurance premiums for properties in communities that participate in the CRS and implement floodplain management programs that exceed minimum NFIP requirements.

Tybee Island participates in the NFIP and has a CRS rating of Class 5 which qualifies properties for a 25% discount in the premium cost of flood insurance for NFIP policies.

Current Policies & Forms

Effective May 1, 2008, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has instituted a new policy: flood insurance policies for buildings that are rated as having the lowest floor 1 foot or more below the base flood elevation (BSE) will no longer be eligible for the community’s CRS discount.

The NFIP is in the process of implementing congressionally mandated reforms required by the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 that repeal and modify the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 (BW-12). This fact sheet (PDF) provides an overview of the changes to flood insurance rates under the NFIP. While the new law is implemented, policyholders are encouraged to maintain and keep their current flood insurance policies. Allowing policies to lapse will leave policyholders unprotected.

It is recommended that you contact your insurance agent either to purchase flood insurance, to inquire whether your property is affected by this new FEMA policy, or to pursue answers to any other questions about flood insurance policies.

Tybee Flood Risk

To educate yourself further on NFIP and flood risk on Tybee, visit the NFIP home page. Using the links here, you can rate your insurance risk, get broad estimates of flood insurance premiums, and get a listing of flood insurance agents in the area. You will also find links to visit FEMA’s Map Service Center to view official Tybee flood information, check out the zone of your home, and get a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) to see how your risk is determined.

Tybee residences and businesses with any federally backed loan are required to have flood insurance. With these tools, you can make sure you are getting an appropriate level of insurance at an appropriate rate.


At FEMA’s Map Service Center, the maps will show an A or V designation, which means flood insurance is required by FEMA regulations. The elevation listed shows what your occupied, residential elevation above sea level must be to qualify for insurance, discounts, and so on. The most accurate ways to determine your elevation are, in order, by contacting a surveyor, the Tybee Emergency Management office, or the Zoning Department. You can also view a topographic map from the U.S. Geological Survey. A FIRM is free at the Map Service Center and will give you all the information needed to give an insurance agent to get you a quote. The USGS Topographical Map Locator can give you a bit more detail - search for Tybee’s ZIP code, 31328. You will find Tybee right on a dividing line, so you may need view 2 maps to find your property on the Island.

Another excellent resource for emergency preparedness information is at the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes website. Be sure to check out their information on flood and hurricane safety!

Helpful Resources

For further information, please call us at 912-472-5062.