Oct 2, 2023 - News

Locals stay put, as California's ranked 4th "stickiest" state in the U.S.

Share of people born in a state who are still living there as of 2021
Data: Dallas Fed via U.S. Census Bureau; Map: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Californians don't like to leave home.

Driving the news: A recent Dallas Fed study using U.S. Census Bureau data ranked California the 4th "stickiest" state in the county.

  • This map shows that 73% of people born in California still lived here in 2021.

Why it matters: Even with its high cost of living, slowing population growth and lessening migration, people still want to live in California.

What's happening: A recent statewide survey found 70% of residents feel happy about living in California, yet 4 in 10 Californians are considering moving out of state, mostly due to concerns about living expenses.

  • The state's population has been declining since 2020. In 2022 California saw population dips in all but 12 of its 58 counties, including San Diego, which saw a 0.2% dip, according to the California Department of Finance.

Zoom in: San Diego County experienced its first population loss in a decade in 2022.

  • Between 2020 and 2021, about 140K people left San Diego County, while roughly 114,000 moved here — a net loss of more than 26,282 residents, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Yes, but: Most of the people who left San Diego County didn't go very far. Five of the top 10 destinations for the people who left San Diego were in California, the SF Chronicle reports.

  • Riverside County was first, followed by Los Angeles County and Orange County.
  • Counties home to Phoenix and Las Vegas were the top out-of-state destinations.
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