Hurricane Ian’s Financial Toll Threatens Florida’s Real Estate Market
On Sunday, Hurricane Isaac churned toward the Florida Panhandle, bringing more than 3 feet of rain and flooding inland before it slammed into the state’s Gulf Coast on Monday. In the hours after the storm hit, the number of flood-related storm warnings in Florida increased by 300. By Tuesday morning, the storm had brought more rain and flooding to areas including the panhandle, where many coastal homeowners are still struggling to recover from Isaac. Isaac made landfall at 7:00 a.m. EDT on Monday and quickly weakened into a tropical depression by the afternoon.
With Isaac’s arrival, it appeared that most of the Florida Panhandle would likely get a taste of some of the worst flooding Isaac would cause in the coming weeks and months.
Unfortunately, the number of hurricane-force winds (those with sustained winds of 74 mph or higher) that Isaac was capable of throwing made landfall in Florida’s Gulf Coast all but inevitable.
Here is a look at the real-estate markets of the Florida Panhandle’s three most-populated counties, where Hurricane Isaac is expected to bring the most damage this summer. Please note that these estimates do not include Isaac’s impact in the Panhandle.
Jeffrey County is the second-most-populous of the Florida Panhandle’s three counties. It is located on the Gulf of Mexico and has a land area of just over 1,300 square miles, with a population of almost 1 million people. The county is home to Pensacola, its city of 30,000 people.
The storm’s potential impact in Jeffery County has already been substantial. The county has already seen more than $2 billion in property damage. In fact, the storm’s impact was so substantial that a storm surge may be able to reach parts of the county that are not inundated by Isaac.
The Panhandle, however, did not escape unscathed from Isaac: The category 4 hurricane flooded low-lying areas, causing millions of dollars in damage. In total, the damage has been estimated at $1.1 billion.
The storm’s potential impact in Jeffrey County was already