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The official start of summer last week brought with it a deadly heat wave, with millions of Americans facing heat advisories and heat indices over 100 degrees. It also comes as many U.S. communities have been left reeling by a particularly active tornado season

The latest CivicScience data show severe weather impacts have been felt far and wide — since January, 55% of U.S. adults report they’ve been personally impacted by a severe weather event recently. Severe rain or snow, wind, and extreme temperatures were the most common events experienced. Extreme weather events like these have led to soaring home insurance rates and are likely forcing some Americans to move to escape them.

Let us know: How prepared is your home for severe weather?

But the weather is affecting more than just home insurance prices. As summer temperatures reach scorching levels, experts expect the average price to keep homes cool to reach a 10-year high this year. While consumer concern for utility prices has hovered around 86% throughout 2024 so far, the percentage of those who are ‘very’ concerned has spiked a stark eight points from May to 51% as outside temperatures climb.

Americans who are concerned over these rising utility costs have cut back spending in several areas due to higher prices and inflation, with travel, fast food, clothing, and apparel outpacing the pack. This pattern diverges slightly from the Gen Pop, where decreased spending on full-service restaurants and live events eclipse clothing in the top categories. However, regardless of worries about utility expenses, consumers have shown less inclination to cut back on beauty spending, perhaps as they value it as self-care.

Take Our Poll: Have you seen a significant increase in utility costs over the last five years?

Although the percentage of consumers ‘very’ concerned about climate change has decreased by three points to 32% since 2022 (with a corresponding two-point increase in those ‘not at all’ concerned)1, escalating severe weather events and rising utility costs are putting significant strain on budgets. This strain is influencing where Americans choose to live and how they manage expenses. It will remain on the CivicScience radar to observe how consumers navigate these challenges and adjust their priorities to stay financially stable amid inflation and still high interest rates.

CivicScience’s ‘always-on’ 1st-party data tracking makes it easy to identify shifts in consumer behavior before the competition does. See what we can do for your brand.

  1. n=680,000+ responses from 01/01/2022 to 06/24/2024 ↩︎