Suncorp's inaugural Resilient Home Report research has found 27 percent of Australians have moved or considered relocating during COVID. And although experts are predicting more cyclones, fires, and floods this summer, half failed to consider the impacts of natural disasters.
The inaugural Suncorp Resilient Home Report found lifestyle factors (closeness to family and friends, climate, escaping the rat race) were the main drivers of Australians seeking to relocate to another state or region.
Alarmingly almost half (46 percent) said they didn’t take into consideration the increasing risks of extreme weather when deciding on where to live, and even more (52 percent) didn’t consider the impacts when selecting the type of home to live in.
“As an insurer, we’re on the frontline helping people and communities most impacted by weather disasters,” said Bernadette Norrie, Suncorp Insurance Executive Manager. “It’s not just property damage that Aussies face in the wake of a natural disaster, it’s the mental toll of severe weather events that many people fail to realise and properly consider.
“Once a disaster strikes, the lives of those affected can be upended completely. Many families can be displaced from their homes while repairs happen, people lose irreplaceable possessions, and are left with the emotional scars of what they’ve endured.
Bernadette Norrie, Suncorp Insurance Executive Manager
Identifying the natural hazards of where you plan to live as well as the type of structure that can best defend your family against a bushfire, flood or storm needs to be an essential part of property research.
Suncorp research also found that one in five did not consider the frequency or severity of natural disasters before making their sea/ tree change.
The Suncorp Resilient Home Report revealed over half of Australians (52 percent) believe they live in an area with some form of risk – the most common being severe storms (30 percent) followed by bushfires (29 percent).
More than two-thirds (64 percent) admit that extreme weather events in recent years have made them more aware of the risks, however only one in four have made modifications to their home to protect against natural disasters.
“Getting ready for extreme weather is more than just checking gutters for leaves and trees and tying down backyard furniture, it’s about making your home more resilient so you are better protected from the impacts of Mother Nature.” Ms. Norrie said.
Get weather-ready: Prepare for natural hazard risks
Check State government and council websites
Undertake a natural hazards review, including disaster readiness information. Government websites have a range of guidelines and information to help you consider natural hazard risk and planning.
Understand how resilience against weather can be incorporated within your house design
Visit Suncorp’s One House prototype to understand factors such as building type, location, and weather conditions, which can help you determine how you can build or renovate with resilience.
Notes to Editor: The findings from Suncorp’s Resilient Home Report are compiled through a national survey with a representative sample of 1,499 Australians aged 18+ and was conducted by Kantar from 28 September to 4 October 2021 on behalf of Suncorp.