Who's Moving Out of Los Angeles and Why? | Long Distance Usa Movers

Is California Exodus Real? Who’s Moving Out of Los Angeles and Why?

If you’re thinking about moving out of LA, know that you’re not the only one. In recent years, there have been unusually high numbers of residents leaving this dreamy US metropolis – but what’s causing this? Why are Californians moving out of Los Angeles? Where do most of them move after leaving the City of Angels? Keep reading to find out everything about this strange emigration trend – we’ve covered everything you need to know in the text below.

Street in LA in the sunset, with palms on both sides
Why are Angelenos relocating out of LA in huge numbers? Let's find out all about this

Once you start reading our article, you might begin to wonder – why are people still moving to LA if it has so many issues? Well, the truth is that living in LA isn’t as dreamy as it used to be – but things seem to be looking up lately. Still, the city has a lot of problems to deal with before it’s back to its former glory. We’ll discuss the most common reasons to move out of the City of Angels – this will help you understand all about the so-called California Exodus.

Is the California Exodus a Real Thing?

Until recently, moving from Los Angeles was less common than relocating there. However, statistics show us that, in the last decade, more residents moved out than they moved to LA. The same trend is happening all over the entire Golden State – approximately 6 million moved out of state, and just about 5 million moved in, resulting in the net loss of around 1 million residents in a single decade.

So, obviously, we can’t deny that something is happening – the California Exodus is, unfortunately, a real thing. Compared to the population growth in the 90s thanks to the Silicon Valley tech industry, the 2000s and 2010s have been quite disappointing. Nowadays, Angelenos are getting jobs in new cities and packing for their efficient relocation to anywhere but here.

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Things Have Taken a Turn for the Worse Since the Pandemic Has Started

At the beginning of the pandemic, Americans were concerned about relocating during Coronavirus, primarily because of safety issues. Still, that didn’t last long, as now we can see that cross-country moving is back to normal – and Californians from LA are the leaders in using long-distance moving services. Many residents are unhappy about the way the pandemic has been dealt with. Also, it seems like Coronavirus uncovered countless issues the metropolis hasn’t been paying attention to. If it weren’t for the virus, CalExodus probably wouldn’t have reached this stage for a few more years – but it’s safe to say that it would’ve still happened, just later.

View of the Downtown LA from a freeway
COVID has sped up the CalExodus, but it would've still happened without it

Why Are People Moving Out of Los Angeles?

So, why is everyone leaving Los Angeles? What makes Angelenos embrace the uncertainty and the anxiety about relocating to a new state? It seems like the fear of relocating that many Americans have isn’t as intense as the desire to leave the once-favorite place in the country. LA has been labeled as a place with a falling economy, social injustice, and polluted air – among other things. Some Angelenos use cross-country moving services, but some simply decide to move to a small town nearby. Either way, we can’t say we blame them for wanting to move away and start over in some new place.

LA Is Very Expensive, and There’s No Denying That

Everybody knows that the cost of living in LA is high – that’s no news. It has always been like that, but recently, the real estate prices have become unbearable to many residents. Angelenos now seem to be keener on saving money to move than dealing with sky-high rent or mortgage. According to Niche, the median rent in LA is $1,450 – and the national median rent is just $1,060. Even though this is a metropolis, prices are unreasonable compared to the life quality you get for them – at least, according to Angelenos.

If your ambition were to buy a home in LA, you would have to set aside around $637,000. The number could be worse (just check out the cost of living in San Francisco), but it’s still not even close to the national median home value of $217,500. Even the most affordable places to live in LA aren’t remotely affordable, and residents are fed up with that – so they plan to move to another city where they will be better off.

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Taxes Are So Bad That They Make Californians Want to Leave the State

Some of the significant contributors to CalExodus are definitely the taxes – out of all states, this one is among the worst regarding tax laws. Californians pay the highest sales tax in the US – it’s one of the regressive taxes, and it affects lower-income families the most. The local government supports commercial developments rather than housing because of the taxes. Taxes are also why many businesses are relocating their headquarters out of CA. You have probably heard that Elon Musk moved to Texas – he’s just one of many. Check out the video below to learn more on this subject.

Thanks to Remote Work Possibilities, You Can Live Elsewhere in The US and Be Employed in a Californian Company

COVID brought us hell, but it did one helpful thing – it normalized the terms of remote work. Now you can easily keep working in a Californian company and move literally anywhere else in the country. This is a popular practice that helps Americans save tons of money on housing. There are many great cities in the US that you wouldn’t even miss LA. All you need to do is pick a place and choose a cross-country moving company with the best long-distance movers.

A woman counting money for long-distance moving services
It's no news that LA is pricey - but residents no longer want to deal with those terms

Social Inequality Is Noticeable in the City of Angels

It is often said that LA is where you come to try and fulfill your dreams, but is it as simple as it sounds? Probably not – success in this place is difficult to achieve if you’re starting from the bottom. LA is not so friendly to lower-income residents. Unfortunately, social rights are something this place has to improve. You might think this is thanks to COVID, but social injustice has been on the rise since the 90s – the decline of the middle-class and the increase in low-income jobs made it harder to get where you want to go.

Homeless Crisis Has Changed LA in the Recent Years

Homelessness is one of the leading indicators of social issues and a falling economy – and there are so many homeless people on the streets of LA that you wouldn’t believe it. In fact, it’s not uncommon to see encampments even in the best and safest neighborhoods – tents next to luxury buildings are an everyday sight for Angelenos. Since COVID started, the homeless crisis in CA has gotten way worse, and politicians are yet to solve the issue.

Homeless encampment on the street in LA
Social injustice and human rights are one of many issues LA faces

A Lot of People Are Leaving Los Angeles Because It’s Overcrowded and Polluted

Many local residents think it’s time to book relocation and packing services because they feel like LA is overcrowded. Even though the population is a little under 4 million, it often looks like it’s way more, especially if you find yourself stuck in a traffic jam. That much traffic is undoubtedly one of the contributors to bad air in LA county. Even though it’s beautiful, LA is one of the most polluted cities in the country. Surrounded by mountains, it’s the perfect place for smog to deposit.

Lockdown temporarily lowered the levels of dangerous PM 2.5 air pollutants – the air quality hasn’t been so good in decades, but just as the COVID regulations weakened, the smog levels started to increase. Apparently, it’s time for Angelenos to find a more permanent solution. Otherwise, they will continue to write their relocation to-do lists and leave searching for better air elsewhere.

Aerial view of an interchange in LA
Traffic in LA is annoying - plus, it's one of the reasons for horrible air quality

Crime Rates Are Far From Good – LA Isn’t a Family-Friendly Place

One of the benefits of relocating out of LA is the opportunity to go somewhere safer. Crime rates in LA are above the national average. The livability score is just 54%, and LA is considered safer than just 12% of the cities in the US. In 2021, there has been a rise in the number of murders by 12%. Still, the police said they put in extra effort in the second half of last year to prevent violent crimes by taking firearms off the streets of LA. Whether they were successful or not remains to be seen, but Angelenos don’t want to wait that long – instead, they’re packing their houses and waiting for cross-country movers to help them ship their belongings.

If you’re looking for a place to raise kids, LA likely won’t be a good fit – it’s not on the list of best cities to raise a family in CA. Even though educational opportunities are excellent, they can’t help us overlook the high cost of living in the suburbs of LA and safety issues such as a drug abuse epidemic that has been torturing LA for years now. Many families opt for relocating with kids rather than staying in LA – which says a lot, knowing how stressful that process is.

Children running down a hallway with their parents holding boxes in the background
Will this be the year you decide to move with your kids out of LA?

Who’s Leaving Los Angeles?

The short answer would be – everybody and anybody. We’ve mentioned that companies are relocating their businesses out of CA, but it’s actually mostly low and middle-income families who are getting out of LA. This news comes as no surprise, given the economic issues they face here. Millennials moving out of Los Angeles is another common occurrence – primarily because of the high cost of living.

Where Are Californians Moving to in 2022?

Where should I move after LA? Before you try writing your ultimate checklist for relocating to another home, you will have to decide where you want to go. Relocation trends might help you pick the place. If you’re wondering – where do most Californians move? – this list can provide you with answers. We’ve gathered the most common destinations for Californians:

  • Austin, Texas,
  • Charlotte, North Carolina,
  • Dallas, Texas,
  • Seattle, Washington,
  • Nashville, Tennessee,
  • Phoenix, Arizona.

If You Plan to Be on Your Way Out of LA Soon, You Will Need a Trustworthy Long-Distance Moving Company

If you think it’s time to try to get out of LA this year, the most important thing on your to-do list should be finding reputable cross-country movers. Trust us, searching “long-distance movers near me” is the task that will either make or break your relocation. Great movers will make it an easy and pleasant process, regardless of where you’re going. But if you choose poorly, you can complicate an already complex relocation process. Be sure to find the best relocation company – it’s never too early to begin the search, so why not today?

Hannah Michaelson

Hannah is a freelance relocation writer from NYC that has become an expert on packing and unpacking.


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