We all know, in a theoretical way, that climate change is going to turn the state of Florida into a narrow peninsula of watery broken dreams. But I bet you are not scared enough!
More than 21 million people live in the state of Florida. Two-thirds of them live on the coast. And in all of those coastal counties, the real estate business is humming along pretty much as usual: people are getting 30-year mortgages to buy homes, companies are taking out long-term loans to build, counties are selling off long-term bonds, and everyone is buying insurance.
This is all insane!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! According to an expert, in this terrifying Bloomberg story:
“No one should be lending for 30 years in most of Florida,” [Spencer Glendon, a senior fellow at the Woods Hole Research Center and a former partner and director of investment research at Wellington Management] said at an investment conference in New York last week. “During that time frame, insurance will disappear and terminal values” — future resale income — “will shrink. I tell my parents that it’s fine to rent in Florida, but it’s insane to own or to lend.”
What Glendon is predicting is actually very predictable and overwhelmingly likely in the near or medium term future: climate change-related disasters make Florida coastal real estate prohibitively expensive to insure; lenders stop lending; coastal real estate becomes harder and harder to sell; values plummet; tax revenues plummet; coastal Florida enters a full-on irreversible dramatic economic decline. This will happen. We’re only ignoring it, for now.
But don’t worry because eventually all will slip beneath the rising seas.
Sell now while there are still enough Yankee suckers to buy.