More Than 80% of Home Buyers Consider Climate Risks When Shopping for a Home: Zillow

(Chart courtesy of Zillow)

New Zillow research shows that more than 80% of prospective home buyers consider climate risks as they shop.

Although this trend is seen across generations, Millennial and Gen Z shoppers–who comprise 54% of all home buyers–are more likely to consider a climate risk when deciding where to buy a home compared to other generations.

For younger home shoppers who are driving the market, climate risks are a major concern. The median age of today’s home buyer is 39, and first-time buyers make up 50% of all buyers.

“Climate risks impact where most prospective buyers shop for a home”, said Zillow Senior Population Scientist Manny Garcia. “While all generations juggle trade-offs like budget, floor plans, and commute times, younger home shoppers are more likely to face another consideration: They want to know if their home will be safe from rising waters, extreme temperatures, and wildfires.”

For many, flood risk represents the major concern, followed by wildfires, extreme temperatures, hurricanes, and drought, the report noted.

A clear majority of prospective buyers in each region of the United States consider at least one climate risk when shopping for a home, Zillow said. People in the West are most likely to report climate risk as very or extremely impactful in their home search, followed by those in the Northeast. Alternatively, a third of Midwestern and Southern shoppers say climate risks are not very impactful or not at all impactful to their real estate journey.

Although climate risk is affecting attitudes, it’s not to the point where majorities of buyers are considering moving to a region they deem less risky, Zillow said. About half plan to remain in areas that pose the same climate risks they already face. Just over a quarter of buyers are even thinking about moving to areas with more risks. Only 23% of buyers have reported that they are considering homes in areas that they believe to be safer from climate disasters.