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FHA General Permit 6: Reconstruction of a Private Residence

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Flood Hazard Area General Permit Number Six authorizes the reconstruction of a lawfully-existing private residence in the flood hazard area that has been damaged or destroyed by fire, flood, or other natural disaster.

Please note the following limitations apply to all General Permit Number Six applications:

  • The residence must have been damaged by fire, flood, or other natural disaster within one year of the General Permit application;
  • The new residence must be constructed within the same footprint of the residence that was damaged or moved farther from the stream to higher ground;
  • The residence is not enlarged (except for an addition that meets a permit-by-rule at N.J.A.C.7:13-7.2);
  • No basement is proposed;
  • The residence must not be located in the floodway;
  • The lowest habitable floor must be constructed one foot above the flood hazard area design flood elevation;
  • No vegetation is cleared, cut or removed in the riparian zone, except for vegetation within 20 feet of the existing and/or proposed residence (if such disturbance is necessary to facilitate it reconstruction). If such vegetation is cleared, cut, or removed, all temporary disturbed areas must be replanted;
  • If the residence is to be moved farther away from the stream, it must be situated outside the riparian zone, if a suitable location exists on the site.  Otherwise, the removal of trees within the riparian zone must be minimized to accommodate the new building location.

The flood hazard area design flood elevation and floodway limits must be known in order to determine compliance with a General Permit Number Six.  If a Department delineation or FEMA flood Insurance study is available for the regulated water in question, a flood hazard area verification is not required prior to obtaining an authorization under a General Permit Number Six.  However, if the limit of the flood hazard area is established by the approximate method or through hydrologic and hydraulic calculations, then a verification must be obtained from the Department prior to, or concurrent with, obtaining authorization under a General Permit Number Six.

To determine which State mapping is available for a particular “Regulated water” a list of Department delineated “waters” can be found on the Department’s website at www.state.nj.us/dep/landuse/7-13.pdf.  To obtain copies of the maps or other information regarding the use of these studies, contact the Department’s Office of Flood Plain Management at the following address:

State of New Jersey
Department of Environmental Protection
Bureau of Dam Safety and Flood Control
P.O. Box 419
Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0419
Telephone: (609) 984-0859.

It is important to note that, if a Department delineation is available for a particular watercourse; the limit of the flood hazard area must be established using this study.  If no State delineation is available, other methods that are approved by the Department may be used.  These methods are described in detail in the Flood Hazard Area Control Act rules at N.J.A.C. 7:13-3.1.

This page is for informational purposes only. Please see N.J.A.C. 7:13-8.7 for the precise rules concerning this General Permit.

Common Mistakes when applying for a General Permit Number six:

  1. The building (existing or proposed) is located in a floodway.
  2. The building is enlarged by more than 300 square feet of the existing building footprint.
  3. The reconstructed building will be built on a basement foundation.
  4. Reconstructing a residence that has not been damaged by flood, fire, etc.
  5. Using the FEMA 100 year flood elevation as the regulatory flood elevation.
  6. Excessive clearing and cutting of vegetation in the riparian zone to accommodate the reconstructed building. Grading the site to accommodate the construction of the residence such that flood storage volume would be displaced.  This action disqualifies the application for a General Permit Number Six.  Under this scenario, an individual permit must be obtained in order to ensure compliance with the 0% net fill requirement.  Note that, the construction of a private residence is not subject to the flood storage volume displacement limits.  This, provided the residence is not being constructed as part of a larger development and any enclosed area meets beneath the flood hazard area design flood elevation meets the requirements at N.J.A.C.7:13-11.5(l).

General Permit Number Six only applies to a private residence and there is no fee associated with this general permit.  Any proposed addition to the reconstructed dwelling cannot exceed 300 square feet.  In addition, the construction of any habitable area beneath the regulatory flood elevation, such as a basement, is prohibited.  Furthermore, any enclosed area beneath the first finished floor (of the reconstructed building) such as a crawl space cannot be used for habitation and must remain open to flood waters in accordance with the standards at N.J.A.C. 7:13-11.5(l).

The Department encourages activities that will reduce the potential impacts to a lawfully-existing building constructed in the flood hazard area.  For example, the Department has established a permit-by-rule at N.J.A.C. 7:13-7.2(a)3 that allows for the elevation of a building above the flood hazard area design flood elevation.  Also, a permit-by-rule at N.J.A.C. 7:13-7.2(b)2 provides for the removal of a structure from a flood fringe.  Any residential construction that does not qualify for permit-by-rule or a general permit would require an individual permit.

All flood hazard area general permits must comply with all applicable requirements at N.J.A.C. 7:13-8.1(b) and the specific requirements of the applicable general permit.  The permittee must comply with all conditions of the permit authorization, supporting documents and approved drawings.  Noncompliance with a general permit authorization constitutes a violation of the Flood Hazard Area Control Act rules.

For more information on how to apply for a General Permit Number Six, please visit the “The Permit Process” section of this website.

Note: For your convenience, an Administrative Checklist for General Permits has been developed by the Department.  Please follow carefully the requirements as outlined on this checklist to ensure that you have all of the required information necessary for a complete application.

A direct link to the rules cited in our standard approval letter for this General Permit can be found below.

N.J.A.C. 7:13-8.6 FHA General permit 6

N.J.A.C. 7:13-8.1 Standards applicable to all general permits

N.J.A.C. 7:13-8.2 “General Permit Conditions”

N.J.A.C. 7:13 - Index to the entire rule.

Please Note: The Department has made every effort to ensure that the text of this regulation is identical to the official, legally effective version set forth in the New Jersey Register. However, should there be any discrepancies between the text on this web site and the official version of the rule, the official version will govern. For more information on obtaining official versions of the rules, How To Get a Paper Copy of Department Rules

Frequently Asked Questions

If you do not see an answer to your question below, please use the Land Use Contact form on this website. We will make every attempt to answer your question as promptly as possible.

No FAQ for this general permit at this time.

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Last Updated: May 21, 2014