(TargetLiberty.org) – Some states in the U.S. witnessed an unprecedented influx of new residents, while others topped the charts for the number of individuals departing.
With the advent of flexible work-from-home arrangements, Americans are increasingly attracted to states with affordable living expenses and abundant natural environments, causing a significant population decline in some of the nation’s largest cities and states.
An examination of 2022 census information by Storage Hub indicated a demographic shift, with 33 states welcoming more new residents than those they lost, contrary to 18 states where the population dwindled.
Alaska, New York, Illinois, California, and Wyoming experienced the highest exodus. Specifically, Alaska and New York lost 15 out of every 1,000 inhabitants, and Illinois and California saw slightly over 10 out of every 1,000 residents depart.
Various factors drive this widespread relocation. For Alaskans, the exorbitant cost of living and harsh climate are compelling reasons to relocate. Similarly, California and New York’s steep living expenses and the trend of businesses establishing bases in states with more favorable tax conditions are contributing factors.
University of Colorado geography professor Emily Skop highlighted in the report that the pandemic seems to have profoundly influenced internal migration patterns. “There’s a noticeable shift towards less crowded counties,” Skop noted. “Although densely populated areas are witnessing diminished net domestic migration, it’s not necessarily a mass exodus; it’s likely that these areas are attracting fewer newcomers.”
The data also showed that renters are more inclined to change states compared to homeowners, underscoring the ever-growing need for economical housing options. Millennials were the primary demographic leading these moves, with Generation Z not far behind.
Doug Ressler, of Yardi Matrix, emphasized that the surge in remote work is significantly influencing housing choices, especially among aging millennials. “The remote work trend is dictating housing priorities,” Ressler explained. “With an increasing number of people working from home, there’s a growing demand for features like home offices and expansive yards, often leading to moves away from bustling city centers.”
Despite the departure from specific states, many individuals are discovering regions with more favorable weather conditions and lower living costs.
Western and Southern states are proving popular, whereas New England continues to receive a steady flow of newcomers.
The states experiencing the most significant influx of residents include:
Idaho was the most popular, with 25 new individuals per 1,000 existing residents. Several of these states, including Vermont, North Dakota, and Maine, experienced job market resilience through the pandemic.
Affordability, particularly in Southern housing markets, is a major attraction, offering a stark contrast to the prohibitive costs in states like New York and California. For example, Californians relocating to South Carolina could anticipate a housing cost reduction of $430,000, considering the median home price in California is markedly higher, as outlined by Storage Cafe.
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