Rising Sea Levels Are Not Only Affecting Miami Property Values

April 24, 2018
Miami Beach
Photo: Unsplash/Lord of the Lens

New research on rising sea levels in Miami shows that homes closer to sea level are appreciating in value more slowly than those at higher elevations, and that this is a trend occurring across the nation.  

Researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder and Pennsylvania State University found that homes susceptible to rising sea levels are now selling at a 7 percent discount compared to similar, yet safer properties. In Miami, local developers and real estate agents are reportedly skeptical about such climate concerns, yet local builder David Martin sees developers being proactive, per Realtor.com. “Development will look at ways for creating the dollars necessary to solve a lot of these things,” he said, adding that the city can't afford to stop developing near the water, "because expanding the property-tax base helps the government pay for resilience measures."

Rising sea levels don’t appear to be hurting the residential market overall in Miami Beach, where much of the priciest beachfront property sits. He said that is likely because the very wealthy can afford the rising costs from insurance or damage from flooding and are more able to take the risk of their properties losing value. “They can afford to lose the money. Even that probably has a breaking point. At some point even the wealthy will have to walk away.”

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