HUD Proposes New Federal Flood Risk Management Standards

Contact: Michelle Kitchen
Senior Director, Multifamily Finance
(202) 266-8352

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has published a proposed rule in the Federal Register that would revise HUD’s regulations governing floodplain management and the protection of wetlands to implement the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard (FFRMS).

HUD believes this proposal will improve the resilience of HUD-assisted or financed projects to the effects of climate change and natural disasters, and provide for greater flexibility in the use of HUD assistance in floodways under certain circumstances.

HUD proposed an FFRMS rule during the Obama administration, and it was not finalized by the end of President Obama’s term in office. When the FFRMS rule was first proposed, NAHB raised strong concerns that the seriously flawed rule — which would dramatically expand regulated floodplain areas — would result in less affordable multifamily housing construction. President Trump ultimately withdrew the proposed rule.

HUD’s new FFRMS proposal includes substantial differences from its Obama-era predecessor — particularly for determining the horizontally expanded FFRMS floodplain. NAHB is carefully reviewing these changes to determine their potential impact on multifamily housing supply.

Through changes to HUD’s Minimum Property Standards, the department will also require new elevation requirements for single-family homes located in a 100-year floodplain to qualify for FHA mortgage insurance. NAHB will seek members’ feedback to draft public comments, which must be submitted to HUD by May 23, 2023.

View the proposed rule in the Federal Register.

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