Buying A Home Near An Oil & Gas Refinery

Oil & Gas Refinery Homes

If you are buying a home these days you should probably do your due diligence on oil & gas refineries that are within a few miles of your neighborhood.   There are lots of reasons why you might not want to live within a few blocks or miles of a refinery.  Air quality, SMOG, fires, burn-offs, toxic chemicals, explosions, pipeline spills, oil train derailment & eyesores are all part of the elements you get living in close proximity.  

One of the biggest concerns of a prospective home buyer today is the air quality and safety of a neighborhood.  It is not always transparent if you are new to a neighborhood if there have been historic health and safety issues from a refinery nearby.  In fact, refineries have dozens of local public relations people on staff to keep the surrounding communities appeased by donating to charities and sponsoring local events.  Public relations is a huge part of trying to hide air quality and potential hazardous safety issues that might not be widely known by the community. uses public data and satellite images to locate the refinery locations around the World.  Refineries are often located near the ocean and large bodies of water where it also might be desirable to live.  Competition for real estate on the water is not easy and sometimes people tend to take price discounts for ocean views but risk living close to a refinery.  

Oil & gas refineries are not hard to find but real estate websites typically don't show these points of interest on a map when you are buying a home.  Now with Refinery Maps you can easily find well oil and gas refineries and related health and safety issues in any neighborhood. has over 1000 refinery and historic health and safety mapped.  Search the map for "refinery" and look for the red dots.  

We often get emails from real estate agents in areas with a high concentration of oil and gas refineries in neighborhoods.   These real estate agents are looking for data to help their clients better understand what oil & gas activity, air quality, and safety in the neighborhood near the home.  This is often true of out of state buyers looking at homes who are unfamiliar with the area.  

Homebuyers from out of the area often want to know if there have been any fires, explosions, leaks, pipeline accidents, oil spills near the home for sale. is a tool to better understand the historic activity in the area with news articles tied directly to the specific location where the incident occurred. is also actively trying to get this health and data to be used by real estate companies like Zillow, RedFin, HomeSnap &  We think oil & gas refinery data should be an attribute used by real estate companies similar to how Walkscore provides information about things nearby a home like schools, restaurants, and parks.  

Most real estate companies have been very reluctant to share this data with prospective home buyers for obvious reasons.  Why would any real estate agent want to give a reason NOT to buy a home?  Hopefully, this culture of dishonesty will change in the near future and this data can provide some transparency.