Blomquist: u201cPrudent buyers will certainly take [natural-disaster risk] into consideration along with myriad other factors that could affect home value.u201d<@SM>Counties with the highest natural-disaster risk were not in California or other western states.<@SM>Major counties with some natural-disaster risk were spread throughout the country.


IRVINE, CA—A total of 373 US counties have been classified as very high risk for natural disasters, and most of these counties are in southern states, according to a new report from RealtyTrac. The total number of housing units in those counties was 10.6 million, representing only 8% of total US housing units.

The report analyzed 3,138 US counties for risk of earthquakes, hurricanes and tornados and found that the counties with the highest natural-disaster risk were in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Conversely, 271 counties fell into the very low-risk category, representing 3.9 million housing units or 3% of total US housing units. The biggest percentage of counties and housing units fell into the high-risk category: 1,118 counties with a combined housing-unit total of 61 million, representing 47% of total US housing units.

According to Daren Blomquist, VP of RealtyTrac, “The potential risk of a natural disaster may not be the first item on most homebuyer checklists for a dream home, but prudent buyers will certainly take into this consideration along with myriad other factors that could affect home value. In the past, natural-disaster data was technically available, but difficult for buyers and homeowners to dig up; however, now the data is readily available online for virtually any US property, and buyers should take advantage of this.

Blomquist adds that users can view natural-hazard risk data for 110 million property addresses nationwide without cost by going to

As reported earlier this week, RealtyTrac has launched a mobile app specifically for use on an Apple iPhone or iPad. The new app gives users the ability to view detailed real estate information on virtually any residential property, which is available on the data source’s website, including foreclosure status and details, estimated market value, property characteristics, property taxes, sales history, open loans and equity.