The Royal Institute of British Architects, together with Norwich Union, is inviting architects to enter an international design competition to create new ideas for housing in flood-risk areas.
The association is urging potential entrants to use the Government's target of building three million new homes by 2020 as their inspiration, as the plans could mean housing being built on flood plains due to the limited amount of land in the UK.
Designs also need to challenge current building techniques by being not only flood proof, but workable and insurable.
Igal Mayer, chief executive of Norwich Union, said: "The insurance industry is expecting to pay out around £3bn in repairs and reinstatement as a result of last summer's events, and Norwich Union alone dealt with over 50,000 household and business claims as a result of the extreme weather."
The winning designs will be announced in November.