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Rising Sea Levels Threaten $1T Worth of U.S. Real Estate

National  + Weekender  | 

By 2100, it’s expected that 4.7 million American homes will be at risk of rising sea levels, amounting for nearly $1 trillion of value in coastal real estate. Although the threat of rising sea levels on real estate seems far off, the projections are having real consequences on current  home prices, and in turn, rental rates.

Research from Pennsylvania State University and University of Colorado at Boulder found that vulnerable homes are selling for 7% less than similar properties that are unthreatened. Most obviously, real estate in Florida is at risk, but there are some less obvious places where the rising sea levels are impacting prices, like South Carolina, New York and Massachusetts.

The researchers, who studied over 460,000 home sales between 2007 to 2016, found that investor demands are likely to increase because of this threat. Additionally, it’s not just real estate that is affected by such climate change projections. The overall economy and financial health of Americans is affected, as real estate is often the greatest asset for many households.

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