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This Week’s Hottest Real Estate Listings, Ranked by Climate Risk

Understanding the long-term habitability of the the houses featured this week at The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Dwell, and Architectural Digest.

Heatmap Illustration/Getty Images

Zillow scrolling has been co-opted by the media. Real estate sections now dominate at The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Dwell, and Architectural Digest. Even theNew York Postis in on the action.

But I can’t scroll real estate listings without considering the climate risk. So in partnership with Habitable, a climate-focused real estate platform I founded last month, Heatmap is putting its own spin on the trend. Below, we’re adding a simple climate risk score to put real estate listings featured around the web in the context of “could you really live here long-term?” It’s a more informed way to dream about real estate. Using a model developed by a team of Berkeley data scientists at Climate Check, Habitable scores each property for heat, flood, drought, and fire risk on a scale of 1-10. One represents the lowest risk and 10 is the highest. Our rating for each hazard is based on climate change projections through 2050. (You can check your own home’s climate risk here.)

We’ve applied the Habitable Index to some notable real estate finds this week. Read on for our list of most habitable to least habitable listings.

1. The Gilded Age Mansion that’s getting a little warm

Gilded Age mansion.Compass

A proper palace across the street from the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Fifth Avenue in New York City has very low risk other than to your bank account. This $80-million Gilded Age Mansion has little climate exposure, no flooding and moderate heat risk. All that marble probably keeps things cool. (Listed at Architectural Digest.)

Habitable score

2. The Gothic Estate whose biggest concern isn’t the moderate drought risk

Gothic estateMonmouth Ocean Regional Realtors

This gothic estate in Red Bank, N.J. (is that a moat??) is surprisingly not at risk for flooding. And while only a moderate risk for drought and heat, the house does risk overwhelming you with architectural styles and animal prints. $1,575,000. (Listed at The New York Times)

Habitable score

3. A hot D.C. townhouse once owned by the Kennedys

JFK house.Compass

I would easily live in this pristine D.C, townhouse, JFK and Jackie Kennedy’s first home, despite my aversion to hot weather. Posted by Dwell, the $2.6-million house’s only climate risk is high heat — it’s DC after all. If you can take the heat, the place has quite a nice kitchen.

Habitable score

4. The Bill Murray cottage that’s crying out for fans

Bill Murray house.Andrea B. Swenson/Ellis Sotheby’s International Realty

Architectural Digest also announced Bill Murray’s adorable upstate N.Y. house — The Manse — for sale. This cute clapboard home has little climate risk other than… why is it so hot? .

At $2,075,000, you will need many fans to survive the hot humid upstate summer.

Habitable score

5. The L.A. beauty that will leave you thirsty

LA House.Cameron Carothers for Sotheby’s International Realty

Living in this mid-century beauty will be super cool (and not hot at all) but with a 9/10 risk for drought, the fire risk (5/10) feels even more real. Habitable? Inhabitable? It’s a coin toss (stock up on water barrels?) because it’s such a beautiful place. $2.6 million. (Listed by Dwell)

Habitable score

6. The $59 million flood plain

Water Mill mansion.Hedgerow Exclusive Properties

Ooh this is going to be an expensive flood! The $59-million Water Mill mansion on 12 acres of waterfront will stay cool but not at all dry. (Listed on WSJ)

Habitable score

7. The $5 million disaster waiting to happen

Sotheby’s International Realty

The WSJ’s headline for this adorable $4,995,000 home on a marsh and tidal creek says it all: What the hell is going on? The house is outfitted to survive floods,the first floor is open and permeable, and the views are insane, but it is South Carolina — at high risk for coastal flooding. Start building the ark.

Habitable score

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    Ann Marie Gardner profile image

    Ann Marie Gardner

    Ann Marie Gardner is an award-winning editor and entrepreneur. She writes about design and climate and just launched Habitable, a newsletter and tool to assess your home's risk from climate change. You can read it here:


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