Substantial Improvement/Substantial Damage

​​​​​The National Flood Insurance Program requires that any structure located in the Special Flood Hazard area that has improvements or repairs equaling 50 percent of the value of the structure must be brought into full compliance with current Flood Insurance Rate Map Requirements. In addition, Fort Myers Beach requires that the calculation for the value of the improvements or repairs must include all permits obtained in the past five years.

This often comes into play during the remodeling of older structures, which were built before 1984 when Flood Insurance Rate Maps were adopted or for structures built to compliance to outdated maps.

The Town of Fort Myers Beach encourages property owners and contractors to contact Community Development Staff to discuss proposed improvement or repair projects that might trigger substantial improvement/substantial damage regulation, often called “the 50 percent rule.”

Historic structures may be exempt from these requirements if the compliance would threaten the structure’s continued eligibility for historic designation.

Flood Mapping Quicklinks:

Contact Community Development Staff by calling 239-765-0202 or emailing
Learn more about FEMA’s Substantial Improvement/Substantial Damage requirements