Coastal Flood Maps are used to determine the minimum elevation needed for construction to reduce the chances of flooding, as well as construction methods required in certain zones. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) released PRELIMINARY flood maps for Monroe County. Monroe County wants to ensure all residents and owners are aware of the potential for changes for their property so that they can be informed and make proactive decisions.

Monroe County created a three-panel comparison application that shows property owners in unincorporated Monroe County the current Effective FEMA Flood Maps, the FEMA Preliminary Flood Maps, and the County’s Appeal Flood Maps developed by Woods Hole Group for Monroe County’s appeal of the Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMS). 

The application can be found at To use the application, enter the property owner’s name (last name, first name format), the RE# (real estate number format 00000000-000000), or the AK# (alternate key number format 0000000) in the red search box (top left) and the application will zoom to the property, showing a three-pane side-by-side comparison of current, proposed, and possible County appeal.

The application should work with a property owner’s name, but to find the RE# or AK# for your property, search the Monroe County Property Appraiser website with a property address or an owner’s name. The application does not search for properties by address. The data in this application is ONLY for Unincorporated Monroe County and does not reflect any of the incorporated municipalities (cities) in Monroe County.

For questions, email or call 305-453-8759.

The Preliminary Flood Maps and the County’s Appeal of the flood maps are NOT FINAL or ADOPTED. These maps may indicate a future change to required elevation for future construction; however, until FEMA issues a Letter of Final Determination and Monroe County adopts the FIRMs (final flood zone maps), all information in the Preliminary Flood Maps and County Appeal Flood Maps are subject to change. Property owners should be aware the new flood maps may change permitting requirements based on the final flood maps. The final outcome will not be known until the appeal(s) are resolved, and the use of this preliminary data is at their discretion.

The current 90-Day FEMA appeal process will end June 17, 2021. Any private appeals must be received by Monroe County by 5 p.m. on Thursday, June 3, 2021. Any community or individual property owner can appeal proposed changes outside of the County’s appeals or comment on other information included on the preliminary flood hazard maps, also known as Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) and the preliminary Flood Insurance Study (FIS) report. Formal appeals of the Preliminary Maps to areas in Unincorporated Monroe County must be submitted to FEMA through Monroe County.  

Per FEMA, an appeal must be based on data and documentation showing the proposed flood hazard information shown on the preliminary FIRM or in the FIS report is scientifically or technically incorrect. Appellants need to demonstrate better methodologies, assumptions or data exists and provide alternative analyses that incorporate those methodologies, assumptions, or data if appropriate. The results must show an overall change in the flood hazard information shown on the preliminary FIRM and/or in the FIS report.

For more information on the appeal process, visit  

PICTURED: The Big Pine Key property referenced in the three-panel application shows the current effective flood zone and the new proposed FEMA Preliminary flood zone. A change in the third panel shows the property is a part of the County’s appeal process.

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