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Old 08-19-2008, 08:26 PM
 
Location: Reston, VA
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Small rivers, creeks, and ponds can be very appealing as part of the landscape when they remain their "normal size," but there are times when excessive rain or snow melt can cause increased volume.

When considering a home on flat terrain, how close is too close?

Thanks.
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Old 08-19-2008, 08:40 PM
 
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May I ask what state and area? I think several factors would need to be considered...
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Old 08-19-2008, 08:41 PM
 
Location: Venice Florida
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What's snow?
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Old 08-19-2008, 08:46 PM
 
Location: near Portland, Oregon
472 posts, read 1,635,817 times
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Default Flat terrain = flood plain

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgo View Post
Small rivers, creeks, and ponds can be very appealing as part of the landscape when they remain their "normal size," but there are times when excessive rain or snow melt can cause increased volume.

When considering a home on flat terrain, how close is too close?

Thanks.
God Almighty knows, and I mean that quite literally. Ask the people in New Orleans, or the Midwest, or in Vernonia, Columbia County, Oregon. (We're still recovering from a bad flood here.) IMO global warming is very real, and all bets are off. And it's not just about losing your stuff, that can be replaced. People die in floods. People like you and your family.
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Old 08-19-2008, 09:54 PM
 
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A lot depends on how the ground percs, if there are spillways or dams. and if it is a wet creek as opposed to a drainage ditch that just happens to have a little trickle.
That's why I asked where.
And does the house have a basment, slab,etc.
Ther are even flod issues in the mountains and not flat terrain. Franklin NC got a humdiger of a flood a while back.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:11 PM
 
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And you could also ask the folks in the Big Thompson Canyon, in Colorado ... and a very scenic mountain area. The right combination of rainfall and saturated ground created a flash flood that wiped out homes and structures, the canyon road, etc.

It doesn't take much in some locales to turn a marvelous piece of waterfront property into a problem area. Knowing the history, flood plain, and the risks posed by adjacent development affecting the drainage can all be important.

Even here in SE Wyoming ... at about 6,000' elevation in the Cheyenne area ... a flood ripped through Crow Creek in 1985. There was extensive damage to property in the area, even bridges/culverts over the Creek were washed out. A 100 year flood incident? There's been others ....
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Old 08-19-2008, 11:22 PM
 
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FEMA provides flood maps by address online, so you can see "how close is too close" specific to the house you're looking at and the body of water. It takes a bit to learn to read them, but it's definitely doable.

All that said-- and at the risk of sounding really paranoid-- keep in mind that we just experienced two 500-year floods in the space of 15 years on the Mississippi. "Climate Change" means pad the borders of any map FEMA gives you.

FEMA Map Service Center - How to Find Your Flood Map
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Old 08-20-2008, 12:07 AM
 
Location: Reston, VA
948 posts, read 4,234,372 times
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Let's see if I can get everyone's name spelled correctly.

FLBob: Take a look at some of the photos on the Weather Forum, especially, the Canadian photos.

crazyma: Minneapolis, Raleigh-Durham, Louisville, KY area, Houston, so many places. Some homes have basements, or the home sites are graded for walkout basements, or the homes are on flat lots (Houston).

scone and sunsprit: For the various areas that you mentioned, those folks experienced awful destruction. I wonder if they thought they would be okay because their homes were 1000 feet from the water or 3 miles from the water. Maybe they thought it would be okay based on FEMA's declaration of what is considered a 100-year flood area or a 500-year flood area.

cohdane: I was reading a description about a particular subdivision. This subdivision (about 60 acres) is approximately 75% grass and 25% woods. The lots with trees have a creek behind them, and these wooded lots are the most expensive ones in the entire subdivision. For me, the water is a negative, but you sure couldn't tell it by the pricing.

Many housing subdivisions have lakes, creeks, or ponds, etc., sprinkled all throughout the development, and there is no avoiding them.

Maybe I should have asked the question, would you consider buying a house with a pond, or a creek, or a lake close by? If you would, how close to it would you live.

Last edited by virgo; 08-20-2008 at 12:18 AM.. Reason: Wanted to respond to an extra person.
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Old 08-20-2008, 12:30 AM
 
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I guess my next question back would be new homes, or older estalished areas. Personally I would not buy new construction anywhere!
Now in Miami Lakes FL my end unit/single story condo actually sat 6 ft above sea level, and the parking areas were at that height also. And one of our walls ran perpendicular along the pond 8 ft out from the house. These were built in the early 70's and long time residents said only once in all those years did they get a little flooding into the homes, due mostly to blocked strom drains leading into the ponds.

Also was in St. Marys Ga, again about 4 ft. above sea level and the marsh /St.Marys river was about 200 yds, away. House was 20 yrs old and had never flooded.

Fallingwaters, a Frank Lloyd Wright Home is built on a waterfall for all practical purposes.

It just depends on what you want, and if you can insure it
poop happens anywhere
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Old 08-20-2008, 12:55 AM
 
Location: Reston, VA
948 posts, read 4,234,372 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyma View Post
I guess my next question back would be new homes, or older estalished areas. Personally I would not buy new construction anywhere!
Now in Miami Lakes FL my end unit/single story condo actually sat 6 ft above sea level, and the parking areas were at that height also. And one of our walls ran perpendicular along the pond 8 ft out from the house. These were built in the early 70's and long time residents said only once in all those years did they get a little flooding into the homes, due mostly to blocked strom drains leading into the ponds.

Also was in St. Marys Ga, again about 4 ft. above sea level and the marsh /St.Marys river was about 200 yds, away. House was 20 yrs old and had never flooded.

Fallingwaters, a Frank Lloyd Wright Home is built on a waterfall for all practical purposes. Exquisite!

It just depends on what you want, and if you can insure it
poop happens anywhere
Girl, I need to get my buns in bed. I was reading momof11's post. Maybe I can type this without taking an hour.

It's a mix. I've seen new homes, older homes, and vacant land for sale with water features close to them.

For you, it sounds like it's a personal choice. It's not an automatic no.
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