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House Lifting in New Jersey

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House Lifting in New Jersey

House raising in New Jersey is doing very

well, but that wasn’t always the case. After the

devastating effects of Superstorm Sandy in 2012, the

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

released new elevation standards for areas that were

affected or could be affected in the future. These were

called Base Flood Elevations (BFE) and are the

computed elevation to which floodwater is expected

to rise during a base flood.

Flood insurance rates increased dramatically for those whose houses weren’t above the

BFE. Consecutively, the demand for house raising in New Jersey also increased. House lifting

companies started popping up all along the east coast. Many were legitimate, created in the

hopes of helping New Jersey residents lift their houses to new heights. However, there were no

laws or regulations for house lifters at the time. Other companies saw the demand merely as an

economic opportunity. Inexperienced and underqualified, these companies cut corners and as a

result, dropped houses.

Less than a year after the storm, three

homeowners experienced losing their homes all over

again. One house in Little Egg fell in the month of

July, 2013 where three workers were injured and two

houses in Highlands fell in August and September,

2013. A bill centered on making home lifting safer

was already going through legislation at that time.

Long established house lifting companies such as

W.A. Building Movers, among others, were huge proponents of the bill. They argued that not

mandating expertise in the house lifting field would invite even more tragedy. The bill finally

passed and was put into effect a little over a year later on October 15, 2014.

Since then, companies were and are required to register annually with the New Jersey

Division of Consumer Affairs. In order to register, contractors need to meet the following


●They have at least two years of experience as a home improvement contractor

●The person actually performing the elevation has at least five years of experience in

home elevation

●They carry at least $1 million of commercial general liability insurance per property

and an additional $500,000 of insurance to cover the contents of the home being



●They use a home elevation-jacking machine that can lift the entire structure at once

These requirements have successfully filtered out inexperience and ill-equipped

companies. Before the bill went into effect, there were almost 100 contractors offering house

lifting services in New Jersey. Today, less than half of that number are registered, licensed and

active house lifters. Homeowners in New Jersey can now have peace of mind knowing that their

houses are in safe hands.

To check the status of a house lifting company and to verify their license, click here.

For more information on house lifting, click here.

Other resources: Home Elevation Regulations, Home Elevation Law, Elevating Your House

Topics: house lifting, house raising, new jersey, house lifting new jersey, house raising new jersey