NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist National Poll: Extreme Weather, October 5, 2021

Most Americans Would Prefer to Steer Clear of Living in Areas with Extreme Weather

In real estate, it’s location, location, location and four out of five Americans would not want to move to an area which experiences severe weather events such as hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, or wildfires. For three in ten residents, news about extreme weather makes them appreciate where they live even more.

Personally Experienced Extreme Weather in the Last Two Years
In the past two years, have you ever personally been impacted by an extreme weather event where you live?
Source: NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll National Adults. Interviews conducted September 20th through September 26th, 2021, n=1,220 MOE +/- 3.4 percentage points.
  • 81% of Americans would not move to an area that has been impacted by extreme weather. In a nation that is often divided along regional or partisan lines, Americans from all walks of life agree.

  • News about extreme weather events does not hit home for 60% of Americans. 30% of Americans value where they live even more when they hear about them, and nearly one in ten Americans (9%) want to move away from where they live in the face of extreme weather.

  • If faced with these circumstances, 67% of Americans would want to rebuild rather than relocate.

Nearly 3 in 10 Americans (29%) have been impacted where they live by an extreme weather event in the last two years. Those in the South (36%) are the most likely to report personal experience, followed by residents in the West (31%), Northeast (24%), and Midwest (19%).

"Most Americans would steer clear of moving to an area that is likely to be in the path of extreme weather," says Lee M. Miringoff, Director of the Marist Poll. "But, most people are not eager to pack it up if trouble hits."