People Are Fleeing Connecticut. Here’s Where They’re Plotting to Move to

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Written By Blue & Gold NLR Team

 

 

 

 

Connecticut has experienced a notable decline in residents over recent years, as reported by the US Census Bureau and United Van Lines. Between 2021 and 2022, approximately 60 percent of moves involving Connecticut were outbound, indicating a higher number of people leaving the state compared to those moving in. The reasons behind this trend and the destinations of these departing residents are noteworthy.

Why Connecticut Residents are Moving Away:

Several factors contribute to the decision to leave Connecticut, including:

Cost of living: Connecticut ranks among the most expensive states to live in, characterized by high taxes, housing prices, and utility bills. The state’s median home value stands at $284,000, surpassing the national average of $217,500. Additionally, Connecticut bears the third-highest property tax rate in the country, at 2.07 percent.

Economy and employment: Struggling to recover from the Great Recession, Connecticut has witnessed job losses in the finance and manufacturing sectors. As of December 2023, the state’s unemployment rate was 5.8 percent, exceeding the national average of 4.2 percent. Major businesses, such as General Electric, Aetna, and Pfizer, have also undergone relocations or downsizing.

Weather and climate: Connecticut’s humid continental climate, characterized by cold winters and hot summers, with the risk of snowstorms, hurricanes, and nor’easters, may influence individuals to seek locations with milder climates, particularly retirees.

Personal reasons: Some residents may depart Connecticut to be closer to family, friends, or pursue new opportunities, lifestyles, or adventures. Others simply seek a change of scenery or a fresh start.

Where Connecticut Residents are Moving:

According to United Van Lines, the primary destinations for people leaving Connecticut in 2021 were:

  • Florida (17.5 percent)
  • North Carolina (10.9 percent)
  • South Carolina (8.6 percent)
  • Texas (7.9 percent)
  • Georgia (7.4 percent)¹

These states offer advantages over Connecticut, such as:

Lower cost of living: States attracting Connecticut residents boast lower taxes, housing prices, and living expenses. For instance, median home values in Florida, North Carolina, and Texas are $245,000, $193,000, and $195,000, respectively². Florida and Texas also impose no income tax, while North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia have lower income tax rates than Connecticut.

Robust economy and employment opportunities: States attracting Connecticut residents exhibit more diverse and dynamic economies, featuring growing industries like technology, health care, tourism, and energy. Unemployment rates in these states are lower than Connecticut, ranging from 3.2 percent in Texas to 4.5 percent in Georgia. Moreover, they provide incentives and support for businesses, including lower corporate taxes, fewer regulations, and improved infrastructure.

Warmer and milder climate: The chosen states offer warmer and milder climates, characterized by more sunshine and less snow than Connecticut. They also present natural attractions such as beaches, mountains, lakes, and forests, appealing particularly to retirees seeking outdoor activities and avoiding harsh winters.

Personal reasons: Individuals may relocate to these states to be closer to family, friends, or loved ones, or to pursue new opportunities, lifestyles, or adventures. Additionally, some may be drawn to the culture, history, or overall vibe of these states.

Conclusion

Connecticut faces a challenge in retaining and attracting residents due to factors such as the high cost of living, a weakened economy, unfavorable weather conditions, and personal preferences. The top destinations for departing Connecticut residents include Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, and Georgia, known for their lower costs, better economies, warmer climates, and personal attractions. The future trajectory of this trend remains uncertain, but for now, Connecticut grapples with the task of retaining and attracting residents in a competitive and evolving environment.

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