A Slippery Slope: A Hedonic Property Value Study Of Landslide Risk And Economic Costs In Watauga County

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Stephen Ross Justice, III (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site: https://library.appstate.edu/
Dennis Guignet

Abstract: As the threat of climate change becomes more apparent, it is important to consider the local impacts on the environment, communities, and the economy. A significant impact of climate change for Watauga County is an increase in precipitation, and a subsequent increased prevalence of landslides. In order to quantify part of the costs of climate change to Watauga County, this thesis aims to measure the reduction in the value of residential properties from increased landslide risks through three distinct landslide risk measures: slope of a parcel, an instability index, and distance from the nearest landslide. This is achieved through the use of geographic information systems (GIS) and statistical analyses of data provided by the North Carolina Geological Survey (NCGS), the Watauga County tax office, and the US Census Bureau's American Community Survey. Using hedonic pricing methods, this thesis estimates the loss in residential property values due to increased landslide risks. The analysis shows mixed evidence with regards to slope and the instability index, but the distance from a landslide measure shows significant promise. The analysis suggests that landslides occurring within 0.50 miles of a home can reduce the selling price by between 5.0-5.7%. As landslides occur closer to these properties, this effect is even more prevalent.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Justice, S. (2020). A Slippery Slope: A Hedonic Property Value Study Of Landslide Risk And Economic Costs In Watauga County. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2020
Landslide risk, hedonic price model, property value, climate change

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