Montana is prone to prairie and forest wildfires that can destroy homes and property. A key concept for homeowners is defensible space (modifications to landscape and vegetation around a structure to reduce the likelihood of a fire). In the event of a large wildfire, firefighters will not be able to actively defend every home. A buffer zone around your house will increase the likelihood of it surviving the fire.
Understand that building and living in forested areas carries a risk of wildfire. Check with Montana DNRC to evaluate the fire risk to your current or future home.
Wildfires can increase the risk of flooding by destroying vegetation that absorb rainfall and hold the soil in place. Burned zones are at a higher risk for flooding.
For more information on defensible space, contact your local DNRC Forestry office or NRCS office.