Storm damage near house

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Buyers Consider Disaster Risk in Purchase Decisions

September 28, 2021

About three in four recent home buyers say they factored in natural disasters when choosing a location for their new home, according to a new survey of about 3,000 consumers conducted by realtor.com®.

Seventy-five percent of recent home buyers say they are concerned about the threat of natural disasters. The natural disasters that have them most concerned: tornadoes (39%); severe cold or winter storms (38%); floods (35%); hurricanes (29%); earthquakes (21%); wildfires (17%); droughts (11%); and sinkholes (8%).

Further, one-third of survey respondents say they’d even consider selling their current home and moving to avoid natural disasters.

Homeowners located in rural and suburban areas are the most concerned about tornadoes and severe cold or winter storms. Meanwhile, flooding was a top concern for homeowners living in urban areas, the survey shows.

“Natural disasters can have enormous impacts on communities and homeowners, and with increased frequency and intensity of weather-related events, National Preparedness Month [in September] is a good reminder of how important it is to be prepared,” says Mickey Neuberger, realtor.com®’s chief marketing officer.

Beginning in 2020, realtor.com® began displaying flood risk next to its real estate listings. Properties include scores from Flood Factor between one (minimal risk) and 10 (extreme risk), which represents the home’s cumulative risk of flooding over a 30-year mortgage.

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