Mar 25, 2024 - Business

Why real estate websites are adding climate change data to home listings

Illustration of a "For Sale" sign post flooded in water.

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

Real estate websites are sharing more climate risk information with home buyers and sellers.

Why it matters: Of roughly 4,600 prospective buyers Zillow surveyed nationwide last spring, over 80% said they considered at least one climate risk when shopping.

State of play: Realtor.com, which was the first major site to show a home's flood risk, added heat, wind and air-quality risks to listings this month.

Threat level: Nearly 45% of U.S. homes face severe or extreme damage from environmental threats, according to a new report from Realtor.com.

Projected increase in properties with a significant risk of flooding, 2023 to 2053
Data: First Street Foundation; Map: Tory Lysik/Axios Visuals

What they're saying: "It's vitally important that consumers have this information when they're making decisions about where to live," Realtor.com chief economist Danielle Hale said at an SXSW panel this month announcing the website's new features, which use First Street Foundation data.

  • Those looking at a home can see its potential exposure to different climate risks with scores and maps.

Between the lines: Climate change threatens to make homeownership more expensive, said Matthew Eby, First Street founder and CEO, at the event.

What's next: Climate risks aren't the only consideration when buying a new home, but more shoppers might want to know about home improvements made to mitigate against extreme weather, Hale said at the event.

Go deeper: The climate change real estate bubble risks billions

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