How Is Climate Change Affecting Buying and Selling?

February 25, 2020
Climate Change
By Halfpoint

Climate change is not affecting the choices of buyers and sellers...yet. But 73 percent of those who responded to a Redfin survey are worried about the frequency and intensity of natural disasters when buying and selling. The volume of damage has not been enough to move the needle nationally, but we have already seen parts of California affected by wildfires hit with sky-high insurance prices that are turning people off of the area. If coastal cities flood and the heartland experiences even more intense droughts, the fact that climate change is already on buyers’ and sellers’ minds may indicate that we could reach a tipping point. But for now, more immediate issues weigh more heavily on buyers’ decisions even though they are worried about what the future holds for climate change. 

A majority of homebuyers and sellers are concerned about climate change, according to a new survey conducted by Redfin.

Almost three-quarters of respondents (73%) said that an increase in the frequency or intensity of natural disasters at least somewhat factors into their decision about where and whether to buy or sell a home. Only 10% said it doesn’t impact their decision-making process at all.

Of the 29 U.S. and Canadian destinations we surveyed for this report, Houston’s residents were the most likely to be concerned about climate change. Almost 60% of the area’s respondents—more than any other city—said that an increase in the frequency or intensity of natural disasters “very much” factors into their decision to buy or sell a home. In second place was New York City (47%), followed by Miami (46%).

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