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So I have potentially located some property for sale in the area I have been looking. It is 15.2 acres that lays with the Bennett Branch creek running through it. The road side is accessible by a 100ft ROW, and the side across the stream is not accessible by car. The backside boarders state forest. The property is very long and narrow with the widest portion being about 100 -150 feet in depth to the creek. They are asking 2000 an acre and the township will not call me back. I am nervous to jump on this opportunity without knowing more information due to the property being in the flood plain. What are my building restrictions, sewage, water, etc.

The price would limit me to being able to secure the property, and then having to wait some time before a camp was built. I would consider maybe electric and camper now for be able to have something there to be able to use it.

What’s your guys thoughts? I apologize for the limited info on location, but I don’t want to get too much info out there and have it bought out from underneath me..
 

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keep on the twp. until you get an answer , then you can proceed from there. then you can take your time on deciding on your build or something temporary . good luck on your decision
 

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The township should have a map that shows the flood plain distances from the creek. I live in a flood plain and it used to be only 50 ft from the creek bank to build, with the new FEMA flood plain rules a few years ago the flood plain is probably 150 ft from the creek now. My neighbor wanted to build a house on his vacant lot, he was required to get an engineer who told him the house would have to be elevated 5 ft above the flood plain. After living along a creek in a flood plain for 30 years, I would never buy near a creek again. That beautiful tranquil stream can turn into a roaring monster in a couple hours. Hurricane Ivan I lost over $15,000 worth of property in my basement and have flooded several more times over the years. We just learned to not keep much of any value in the basement.
 

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Whose your neighbors? I bought 16 acres and a guy bought a 10 acre lot beside me and is going to build close to the property line taking out my best spot because of the safety zone.
 

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If you build you need to be a minimum of 50 feet from stream. If it,s in flood plane you’ll have a rough time getting a loan. Any right a way on the property can’t be built on either.
 

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If you still have trouble with the Township, if they have have a website, look for the the Zoning Officer or the Codes Enforcement Officer or the Township Engineer. A lot of the smaller/less populated townships will have a firm that deals with the zoning and/or the codes enforcement.

If that doesn't work out, try the County Planning Office. They may be able to help or at least point you in the right direction.
 

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You had better check what they want for insurance for the property. If it is in a flood plane you will be paying ba lot more than you want to put a house ot trailer.
 

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After living along a creek in a flood plain for 30 years, I would never buy near a creek again. That beautiful tranquil stream can turn into a roaring monster in a couple hours.
What he said.

Never build or buy a cabin or house in a floodplain!!

A floodplain is a plain that floods.

It WILL flood. The only question is when.

Floodplain land can be good for hunting. And if the tract is mostly floodplain, but has some higher land that is well above the floodplain for a good cabin site, that would be great.

But DO NOT build in the floodplain. In many places it's not even legal to build in the 100 year floodplain. And it is extremely unsafe to do.

Also, the 100 year floodplain is not the limit of what can flood. It can go substantially higher. And the FEMA floodplain maps are not always accurate.

You want a margin of safety, for the big floods.

Look at the level of the floodplain and visualize the water flowing 6 feet higher than that.

In flood of Sept. 2011, the gauge on Loyalsock Creek measured the height at 6 feet over the floodplain. And the floodplain is about 1/2 mile wide there.

On a tributary to the Loyalsock, I saw flood debris in the trees that was higher than that, about 8 feet higher than the floodplain.

Build on high ground, way above the floodplain level.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I didn’t pursue it any further after I found out that the entire property is in the flood zone. I appreciate all the advice tho. The search continues!
 

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I think you made a wise choice. A lot of people think the term "100-year flood" means you have a chance of flooding only once in 100-years, the term is a bit deceiving. In August of 2013, I had 2 feet of water in my basement and garage, 3 times in 3 weeks from torrential summer thunderstorms. Let alone all the property and belongings, and people's lives that can be lost in a flood, cleaning up after is quite a project, hours of hosing and mopping mud up, clorox and disinfecting. I've spent many a night over 30 years, staying up all night, watching the creek at flood stage and waiting for it to overflow to take further action. The last few years, if the weather forecast is calling for more than 2" of rain or a hurricane is passing through the area, I start moving vehicles to higher ground, carrying washer and dryer and other items from the basement to my upstairs days ahead of time. The creek behind my house is all filled in with debris and silt, it needs dredged, but try getting a permit for it is like a act of congress. In the old days, the local mining company used to run a D-9 dozer down the creek to the river every Spring to keep it cleaned out and flowing. Nowadays, you can't even dig a backhoe bucket of dirt out with possibly getting a fine from the DER.
 

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Building in a flood plane is a nightmare. Just look at that area last week 3 inches of rain in a short period can wipe away everything you put in.. Run like your butt is on fire..
X2. I would not even consider building or buying in a flood plane. It is simply a matter of time until you regret it.
 

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I didn’t pursue it any further after I found out that the entire property is in the flood zone. I appreciate all the advice tho. The search continues!
I get a kick out of those people think us "flat landers" are stupid enough to but land like this.
I think it should be required that any issues like potential flooding be put right out there in the sale description.
And for all those who want to sell their land and keep the oil and gas rights, go choke on it....
 

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Flood plans do work. Back in Jan. 1996 my little community went thru a flood. It was kind of a freak thing but 2 weeks earlier we had a blizzard with 2.5' of snow. 2 weeks later in got in to the high 50's melted the snow then we had several rains causing a flood. With this event I just mentioned is kind of un normal but the places that flooded was in the flood plan and the ones that didn't flood was not in the flood plan. It was actually correct with in 100' I was very impressed. 100 year flood plans it is guaranteed to happen at least once or it could happen several times. If you have ever been thru a flood you will never want to be have any investment close.
 

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Flood plans do work. Back in Jan. 1996 my little community went thru a flood. It was kind of a freak thing but 2 weeks earlier we had a blizzard with 2.5' of snow. 2 weeks later in got in to the high 50's melted the snow then we had several rains causing a flood. With this event I just mentioned is kind of un normal but the places that flooded was in the flood plan and the ones that didn't flood was not in the flood plan. It was actually correct with in 100' I was very impressed. 100 year flood plans it is guaranteed to happen at least once or it could happen several times. If you have ever been thru a flood you will never want to be have any investment close.
I remember the January 1996 rain-on-snow flood. That was a big one!!

But the mistake many people make is in thinking that floods of that size are rare, freak events.

Not really. I'm 64 years old and I remember numerous large floods.

Here is my little saying about floods:

"You get a 100 year flood about once every 10 years."

That is sort of a joke. But I think it is roughly accurate that floodplain areas get hit with a 'big one" roughly 1 year in 10.

Here's something from the hydrology books:

Streams flood, on average, once per 1.5 years. So that's 2 times in 3 years, 4 times in 6 years etc.

That comes from a huge amount of research on many different types of streams, large and small, and in many different regions.

This is referring to any flooding, including small floods. They're defining flooding as when a stream tops its banks and flows onto the floodplain. So that would include modest floods, that only cover a portion of the floodplain.

The big ones are not nearly as common as that. I think 1 per 10 years is about right. In Lock Haven they have a monument on their River Walk that has the dates of the major floods since the founding of the town, and it comes out to about 1 per 10 years.
 
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