Are People Leaving NYC?

NYC Living - July 30, 2021

In the year and a half since the pandemic began, there have been lots of buzzy articles attempting to gauge the movement of New Yorkers and the future of the city. Is New York Dead? Is New York Alive and Better Than Ever? Are people leaving NYC for the suburbs? As a NYC moving company, we, too, are curious about where people are heading these days to better serve our customers.

Who is leaving NYC
Are people moving out of NYC and into the suburbs?

Last year, The New York Post reported that during the period between March to October 2020, almost 300,000 New Yorkers filed an address change request at the Post Office, revealing just how many New Yorkers were on the move over the summer. The NY Post also suggested that this number may be higher due to people leaving without notifying their local Post Office of their move. 

The re-opening of NYC has been a huge success, prompting many of those who have left to return and enjoy the vibrant energy that many New Yorkers missed during the coronavirus pandemic. But, we’re curious to know more: are New Yorkers still leaving? Where are they going?

As an accredited Brooklyn Moving Company, we are well equipped to understand the present trajectory of New Yorkers. JP Urban Moving has been serving the NYC area for a decade and has learned a bit about how New Yorkers move. 

Who is moving out of NYC? What are the moving trends?

Prior to the pandemic, Bloomberg published an article stating that 2600 New Yorkers were leaving each week, indicating that the population shrinkage is not a new feat. In 2019, we noticed this trend and published a blog identifying parts of America that are providing financial incentives to relocate. Like other expensive big cities around the United States, many city dwellers have been seeking a more affordable life with some extra square footage. Data showed that during the virus peak, most of those migrating outwards were made up of high earners. Moreover, a United Van Lines survey discovered that 58% of those heading out of state were over the age of 55, suggesting that older people may want to retire outside of the city. Typically, those who left the city flocked to the nearby tri-state area (NJ, CT). Though some went down to Texas, Arizona, Florida or California. 

Another interesting insight that movers discovered last year was a demographic breakdown between singles and families. A Wall Street Journal Article from last summer highlighted that there were many young couples and families moving to the suburbs seeking more greenery and better schools for their kids. According to our internal data, we can see patterns of this movement from our clients to see where they are going and if that has changed over time. 

What does our internal data say? Are people leaving NYC?

From the years of 2018-2021, we’ve seen a slight variation in the moving destinations of our clients. In 2018, 19% of total JP Urban Moves were out of New York State, while in 2019, this number dipped to a low of 12%. 

In 2020, this number rose to an all time high for our company. Throughout the year 2020, 24% of our sales were out of state moves, charting the pandemic’s impact on moving trends and mobility patterns. Though this summer, there have been tales of long lines outside of apartment viewings, and bidding wars to seal the deal on hot rental apartments, our data indicates that some New Yorkers are still heading elsewhere. So far, in the first 6 months of 2021, 21.5% of our total moves were to places out of state. 

To compensate for the outflow of New Yorkers leaving NYC, landlords started providing concessions to renters like two or three months of free rent. However, nowadays such concessions are becoming harder to find, with rents growing as demand surges. Single New Yorkers who spent the pandemic at home are coming back to find a competitive rental market with growing prices. 

That being said, when consulting our moving software provider, we were able to gather more insight. In the month of June 2021 14% more people were moving into NYC than the same month in 2019, and 39% more than June 2020. At the same time, in June of 2021, we found that 25% less people were moving out of New York City than in June 2019 and 33% less than June 2020. This data informs us that the migration into NYC this summer has been higher than pre-pandemic levels. In fact, people are moving to the city in higher numbers than before.

We also learned that the average moving job to NYC was the size of a studio apartment. Meanwhile, the average move out of NYC was the size of a one bedroom. This finding corresponds to the WSJ’s suggestion that young couples are looking to move elsewhere. However, it seems that young singles are flocking back to NYC. 

Are you planning to leave NYC or move out of the city?

Are you planning on leaving NYC or moving out of the city? If so, be sure to request a free estimate from us. We’re a top rated Brooklyn moving company here to serve all of your moving needs. 

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