CoreLogic Storm Surge Analysis Identifies More Than 6.8 Million US Homes at Risk of Hurricane Storm Surge Damage in 2016

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Alexandra Hayes
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Lori Guyton
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(901) 277-6066

June 01, 2016, Irvine, Calif. –

—Total Reconstruction Cost Value for All Homes is More Than $1.5 Trillion—

CoreLogic® (NYSE: CLGX), a leading global property information, analytics and data-enabled services provider, today released its 2016 Storm Surge Report which concludes that more than 6.8 million homes on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts are at potential risk of damage from hurricane storm surge inundation with a total reconstruction cost value of more than $1.5 trillion (Table 1). In addition to the number of homes at risk, the analysis also provides the reconstruction cost value (RCV), which is the cost to completely rebuild a property in case of damage, including labor and materials by geographic location, assuming a worst-case scenario at 100-percent destruction. Using more advanced and granular data than in previous years, the 2016 analysis shows an increase from 2015 in the overall number of homes at risk of storm surge as well as an increase in the reconstruction value of these homes. Despite the overall increases, the 2016 analysis shows a decrease in the most extreme category for both the number and value of homes at risk.  

The CoreLogic analysis examines risk from hurricane-driven storm surge for homes along the Atlantic and Gulf coastlines across 19 states and the District of Columbia, as well as for 88 metro areas. Homes are categorized among five risk levels, including Low, Moderate, High, Very High and Extreme.

“Using more granular-level data has given us an even clearer picture of which homes are at risk of storm surge damage,” said Dr. Tom Jeffery, senior hazard risk scientist for CoreLogic. “Despite the overall increases in risk, we were glad to see that the number and value of homes in the most extreme, and dangerous, category actually declined. It just goes to show the power of how advanced data can improve risk assessment at the property level.”

At the regional level, the Atlantic Coast has just under 3.9 million homes at risk of storm surge with an RCV of $953 billion, and the Gulf Coast has just over 2.9 million homes at risk with $592 billion in potential exposure to total destruction damage (Table 2).   

At the state level, Texas and Florida, which have the longest coastal areas, consistently have more homes at risk than other states. Florida ranks first with 2.7 million at-risk homes across the five risk categories and Texas ranks third with 531,169 at-risk homes (Table 3). Since the number of homes at risk strongly correlates with the accompanying RCV, these two states rank first and fifth, respectively for having the largest RCV (Table 4). States with less coastal exposure but lower-lying elevations that extend farther inland, such as Louisiana (ranked second at 800,521 at-risk homes) and New Jersey (ranked fourth at 468,823 at-risk homes), tend to have more total homes at risk because of the potential for surge water to travel farther inland. Louisiana and New Jersey are also near the top of the list for RCV, with Louisiana totaling $184 billion (ranked second) and New Jersey totaling $139 billion (ranked fourth).

At the local level, 15 Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSAs) account for 67.3 percent of the 6.8 million total at-risk homes and 68.3 percent of the total $1.54 trillion RCV (Table 5). This disproportionate distribution of homes suggests that the location of hurricanes that hit land is often a more important factor than the number of storms that may occur during the year. The Miami CBSA, which includes Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, has the most homes at risk totaling 780,482 with an RCV of just under $144 billion. By comparison, the New York City CBSA has slightly fewer homes at risk at 719,373, but a significantly higher total RCV totaling $260 billion.

The CoreLogic storm surge analysis also complements Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood zone information to provide a snapshot of potential damage exposure at the property level since many properties located outside designated FEMA flood zones are still at risk for storm surge damage. Standard FEMA flood zones are designed to identify areas at risk for both freshwater flooding, as well as storm surge, based on the likelihood of either a 100-year or 500-year flood event. They do not differentiate risk based on storm severity, and as a result, do not accurately reflect the total extent of potential risk along coastal areas. Homeowners who live outside designated FEMA flood zones often do not carry flood insurance, given that there is no mandate to do so, and therefore may not be aware of the potential risk that storm surge poses to their properties.

To illustrate varying degrees of flood risk exposure, the analysis compares homes that are not located within FEMA 100-year floodplains against the number of homes located in surge inundation zones, as well as those located in both surge and FEMA Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA). This data can be found in the full report at:

http://www.corelogic.com/landing-pages/2016-corelogic-storm-surge-risk-report.aspx

Table 1 – Total Number of Homes at Risk Nationally and Estimated Reconstruction Cost Value

Storm Surge Risk Level
(Storm Category)

Total Homes Potentially Affected

Total Estimated
RCV
(U.S. Dollars)

Extreme
(Category 1-5 storm)

813,587

$191,973,679,305

Very High
(Category 2-5 storm)

1,658,151

$398,669,536,279

High
(Category 3-5 storm)

2,006,258

$455,622,094,460

Moderate
(Category 4-5 storm)

1,471,389

$332,852,780,000

Low
(Category 5 storm)

880,799

$166,974,115,052

Total

6,830,184

$1,546,092,205,096

Source: CoreLogic 2016

Table 2 – Residential Exposure by Coastal Region

Regional Risk

Atlantic Coast Homes

Atlantic Coast RCV (U.S. Dollars)

Gulf Coast  Homes

Gulf Coast RCV (U.S. Dollars)

Extreme

449,466

$118,228,887,418

364,121

$73,744,791,887

Very High

965,063

$260,930,498,221

693,088

$137,739,038,058

High

1,058,829

$257,010,009,560

947,429

$198,612,084,900

Moderate

945,587

$229,021,402,222

525,802

$103,831,377,778

Low

459,099

$88,344,523,473

421,700

$78,629,591,579

Total

3,878,044

$953,535,320,894

2,952,140

$592,556,884,202

Source: CoreLogic 2016

Table 3 – State at-Risk Totals (Ranked by the Number of Homes at Risk)

Rank

State

Extreme

Very High

High

Moderate

Low*

Total

1

Florida

343,089

701,739

674,817

532,217

479,764

2,731,626

2

Louisiana

91,385

121,573

399,898

118,019

69,646

800,521

3

Texas

40,277

75,021

132,507

127,393

155,971

531,169

4

New Jersey

94,643

180,269

104,010

89,901

N/A

468,823

5

New York

74,654

147,129

122,044

114,903

N/A

458,730

6

Virginia

26,081

65,946

150,883

118,253

42,450

403,613

7

South Carolina

35,514

88,485

81,039

82,177

51,425

338,640

8

North Carolina

30,785

58,829

62,456

46,086

46,556

244,712

9

Massachusetts

10,762

36,412

57,243

56,977

N/A

161,394

10

Georgia

9,290

41,003

53,398

34,272

10,755

148,718

11

Maryland

18,809

43,495

39,563

29,005

N/A

130,872

12

Mississippi

9,254

20,795

29,715

28,962

11,440

100,166

13

Pennsylvania

852

19,843

36,071

26,485

N/A

83,251

14

Connecticut

6,997

21,634

17,955

21,016

N/A

67,602

15

Delaware

8,686

14,859

14,560

16,049

N/A

54,154

16

Alabama

4,880

8,171

13,993

11,129

12,792

50,965

17

Rhode Island

1,869

6,182

9,138

9,404

N/A

26,593

18

Maine

5,484

2,683

4,036

6,148

N/A

18,351

19

New Hampshire

276

4,083

2,924

2,233

N/A

9,516

20

District of Columbia

N/A**

N/A**

8

760

N/A

768

 

Total

813,587

1,658,151

2,006,258

1,471,389

880,799

6,830,184

Source: CoreLogic 2016.

*The “Low” risk category is based on Category 5 hurricanes which are not likely along the northeastern Atlantic Coast. States in that area have N/A designated for the Low category due to the extremely low probability of a Category 5 storm affecting that area.

** Washington, D.C. has no Atlantic coastal homes, but can be affected by larger hurricanes that push storm surge into the Potomac River. Category 1 and 2 storms will likely not generate sufficient storm surge to affect homes in Washington, D.C. 

Table 4 – Reconstruction Cost Value of Homes at Risk by State

Rank

State

Extreme

Very High

High

Moderate

Low*

Total

1

Florida

$70,047,668,435

$144,324,089,970

$133,941,137,129

$99,021,281,198

$88,332,267,100

$535,666,443,832

2

Louisiana

$19,261,303,207

$26,484,796,128

$94,037,897,235

$27,372,451,734

$17,186,539,031

$184,342,987,335

3

New York

$27,192,190,159

$59,542,751,090

$46,345,353,434

$43,938,734,695

N/A

$177,019,029,378

4

New Jersey

$26,447,682,381

$53,059,619,267

$31,790,469,470

$28,301,355,113

N/A

$139,599,126,231

5

Texas

$5,835,289,703

$11,550,329,115

$23,317,525,550

$24,438,975,019

$26,505,485,218

$91,647,604,605

6

Virginia

$6,558,725,763

$15,489,587,692

$31,072,040,615

$24,525,113,051

$9,708,289,679

$87,353,756,800

7

South Carolina

$10,119,452,942

$22,371,712,736

$17,892,600,081

$17,224,909,503

$10,050,257,900

$77,658,933,162

8

Massachusetts

$3,192,412,745

$10,867,434,276

$17,351,600,509

$18,135,938,844

N/A

$49,547,386,374

9

North Carolina

$5,866,070,772

$11,772,926,993

$12,629,945,559

$9,452,537,798

$9,272,277,927

$48,993,759,049

10

Georgia

$2,823,103,183

$10,173,092,963

$10,750,858,962

$6,419,508,663

$1,885,691,326

$32,052,255,097

11

Maryland

$4,533,798,320

$10,363,999,665

$9,197,276,146

$7,045,549,151

N/A

$31,140,623,282

12

Connecticut

$2,470,802,868

$7,222,627,340

$5,956,081,705

$6,841,880,454

N/A

$22,491,392,367

13

Mississippi

$1,962,934,062

$3,971,758,807

$5,408,276,830

$5,182,968,425

$1,998,298,521

$18,524,236,645

14

Delaware

$2,592,865,851

$4,136,821,593

$4,238,888,654

$4,465,099,655

N/A

$15,433,675,753

15

Pennsylvania

$205,882,424

$2,509,057,342

$4,742,484,301

$3,554,045,351

N/A

$11,011,469,418

16

Alabama

$951,444,860

$1,419,732,376

$2,366,412,240

$1,964,047,014

$2,035,008,350

$8,736,644,840

17

Rhode Island

$534,329,842

$1,830,867,728

$2,674,150,401

$2,673,066,234

N/A

$7,712,414,205

18

Maine

$1,316,675,180

$687,634,190

$1,058,854,921

$1,589,131,085

N/A

$4,652,295,376

19

New Hampshire

$61,046,608

$890,697,008

$846,888,075

$593,570,376

N/A

$2,392,202,067

20

District of Columbia

N/A**

N/A**

$3,352,643

$112,616,637

N/A

$115,969,280

 

Total

$191,973,679,305

$398,669,536,279

$455,622,094,460

$332,852,780,000

$166,974,115,052

$1,546,092,205,096

Source: CoreLogic 2016.

Table 5 – Storm Surge Risk for Top 15 Metropolitan Areas

Rank

Metropolitan Area

Total Homes Potentially Affected By All Categories of Hurricane

Total Estimated RCV

(U.S. Dollars)

1

Miami, FL

780,482

$143,949,383,422

2

New York, NY

719,373

$260,195,234,842

3

Tampa, FL

454,746

$80,627,283,072

4

New Orleans, LA

390,806

$94,043,948,226

5

Virginia Beach, VA-NC

385,084

$83,472,805,334

6

Cape Coral, FL

306,953

$61,989,183,591

7

Houston, TX

280,112

$51,868,761,737

8

Bradenton, FL

250,615

$47,331,097,845

9

Naples, FL

180,919

$43,178,509,775

10

Jacksonville, FL

166,709

$35,807,031,655

11

Philadelphia, PA

165,940

$31,884,862,628

12

Charleston, SC

145,356

$36,193,547,227

13

Boston, MA

129,167

$38,480,093,842

14

Myrtle Beach, SC

123,645

$21,588,181,602

15

Lafayette, LA

119,942

$25,831,094,601

 

Total

4,599,849

$1,056,441,019,399

Source: CoreLogic 2016.

Additional CBSA data, market rankings, regional, state and local-level maps are available upon request.

Methodology

The CoreLogic storm surge analysis encompasses single-family residential structures and also includes mobile homes, duplexes, manufactured homes and cabins, among other non-traditional home types. The 2016 CoreLogic Storm Surge Report provides a more granular and accurate analysis than in previous reports, now incorporating 10-meter grid cell elevation data rather than the 30-meter elevation data used previously. This enhanced granular view of data effectively increases resolution and accuracy of land elevation analysis by almost tenfold, giving insurers an even better way to analyze risk. Year-over-year changes in the number of homes at risk and RCV can be the result of several variables, including new home construction, improved public records, enhanced modeling techniques, fluctuation in labor, equipment and material costs, and even potential rise in sea level. As a result, direct year-over-year comparisons should be avoided. To estimate the value of property exposure of the single-family residences, CoreLogic utilized its proprietary reconstruction cost valuation methodology which estimates the cost to rebuild the home in the event of a total loss and is not to be confused with property market values or new construction cost estimation. Reconstruction cost estimates more accurately reflect the actual cost of damage or destruction of residential buildings since they include the cost of materials, equipment and labor needed to rebuild, and also factor in geographical pricing differences. Actual land values are not included in the estimates. The values are based on 100-percent or total destruction of the residential structure. Depending on the amount of surge water from a given storm, there may be less than 100-percent damage to the residence, which would result in a lower realized RCV.

About CoreLogic

CoreLogic (NYSE: CLGX) is a leading global property information, analytics and data-enabled services provider. The company’s combined data from public, contributory and proprietary sources includes over 4.5 billion records spanning more than 50 years, providing detailed coverage of property, mortgages and other encumbrances, consumer credit, tenancy, location, hazard risk and related performance information. The markets CoreLogic serves include real estate and mortgage finance, insurance, capital markets, and the public sector. CoreLogic delivers value to clients through unique data, analytics, workflow technology, advisory and managed services. Clients rely on CoreLogic to help identify and manage growth opportunities, improve performance and mitigate risk. Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., CoreLogic operates in North America, Western Europe and Asia Pacific. For more information, please visit www.corelogic.com.

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