Housing Damages From Hurricane Matthew Could Reach $200 Billion

Around 950,000 homes are at risk of major storm surge damage


October 7, 2016

Millions of Floridians are being urged to evacuate as Hurricane Matthew, a Category 4 storm, works its way up the Atlantic coast. The homes left behind will take an awful lot of pounding.

According to data from CoreLogic, CNBC reports that Hurricane Matthew could cause up to $200 billion in damages to houses in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. Nearly 954,000 houses in Florida are at risk of major storm surge damage, with a reconstruction value of $189 billion. The analysis only takes into account water damage, not destruction from swirling winds — which reach up to 125 mph.

The numbers are considerably higher today than they were when Hurricane Andrew hit in 1992. Florida was the epicenter for the housing boom and bust in the early 2000s. Building permits, a strong measure of construction, were filed for more than 138,000 single-family homes in Florida's east coast counties just from 2005 to 2008, according to John Burns Real Estate Consulting.

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