Rising seas to threaten coastal property values

Rising seas to threaten coastal property values

Rising seas to threaten coastal property values

As many as 311,000 coastal homes in the continental United States with a collective market value of approximately $117.5 billion are at risk of climate change-induced chronic flooding within the next 30 years-the lifespan of a typical mortgage- according to new data released by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), which also noted that about 14,000 coastal commercial properties assessed at a value of roughly $18.5 billion also are at risk during that timeframe.

In Florida alone, the "homes at risk by 2100 now contribute roughly $5 billion collectively in annual property tax revenue", said the report. Florida has the most to lose, according to the research. Also, the San Francisco Bay Area, coastal Louisiana, the Eastern Shore of Maryland and beach communities from Texas to MA. If carbon emissions and rapid ice sheet loss are not curtailed, chronic flooding will render these homes and businesses unusable by 2045, the study says.

More than 300,000 USA coastal homes could be uninhabitable due to sea level rise by 2045 if no meaningful action is taken to combat climate change, a Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) study published Monday found.

The report finds increased flooding due to rising sea levels will result in declining property values and therefore declining property tax bases for some cities and towns. "Some smaller, more rural communities may see 30, 50, or even 70 percent of their property tax revenue at risk due to the number of chronically inundated homes". Under NOAA's calculations for a moderate level of sea level rise, around 140,000 homes would be at risk by 2035 and more than 2.1 million by 2100. In Bonita Springs, on Florida's Gulf Coast, homeowner Laurie Malone (ph) was shocked by the amount of water that came into her home during last year's Hurricane Irma. If you add commercial properties, the total number of properties impacted by 2100 could be worth more than $1 trillion.

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The report is based on what would happen if sea levels rose from less than a foot in the near future to as high as almost 8 feet by 2100. The combination of poverty and chronic flooding creates hotspots of heightened risk in Louisiana, North Carolina, New Jersey and Maryland.

With lower home values, comes lower property taxes. The authors of the research say that this could potentially lead to the most extreme housing crisis the country has ever seen.

According to the researchers (who used data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and property data from Zillow), this home is worth $967,000, probably houses two people and contributes $8,904 to the local property tax base. "People on the waterfront won't be able to stay unless they are very wealthy".

About 175 communities nationwide can expect significant chronic flooding by 2045, threatening 10 percent or more of their housing stock. Coastal real estate investors and developers may similarly experience financial losses in some coastal areas. We can start by doing our part - helping to reduce fossil fuel emissions. These flawed policies and incentives include incomplete or outdated flood risk information, subsidized insurance, lax zoning and building codes, incentives for business-as-usual building and re-building, and incomplete credit ratings.

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