The Great COVID Migration: 31% Of Young Adults Relocated During The Pandemic

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Tuesday, Mar 23, 2021 - 07:10 PM

The great Covid Migration of 2020 and 2021 for people between 18 and 21 continues.

We have extensively documented the exodus from major cities not only by Gen Z and millennials, but also by corporations, over the last 12 to 18 months. This is why we weren't surprised when it was reported that 31% of people aged 18 to 31 "relocated either permanently or for an extended period of time" during the pandemic, according to CNBC.

This figure compares to 16% of adults overall who moved. Among the findings of a survey, CNBC reported:

  • Gen Z — who range from ages 18 to 24 — were most likely to pick up stakes, with 32% relocating. That was followed by millennials — ages 25 to 40 — at 26%.
  • Members of Gen X — ages 41 to 56 — and baby boomers — ages 57 to 75 — were least likely to relocate, with 10% and 5% having made moves, respectively.

In terms of motivation for moving, 31% of people said they moved to be closer to friends and family. 27% said it was due to affordability and 21% said they were relocating for a job. 18% said they wanted more space and 17% said it was due to a newfound ability to work from anywhere.

And while technically they left the cities, they didn't go too far. The survey reveals that three of the five most popular relocation destinations from New York City were under 15 miles away. 

When respondents left cities like Austin, Texas, Dallas, Houston or Orlando, Florida, they chose new living locations that were "less than 30 miles away", the report notes. 

The survey included 5,158 adults and U.S. Postal Service address requests from January to December 2020. According to the survey, "Bankrate analyzed 12,681,085 USPS change of address requests, which covered Jan. 1 through Dec. 31, 2020. They were compiled by zip code and only registered moves within or between zip codes with at least 10 requests over that period. For example, if three people or families moved from Bethpage, NY 11714 to Myrtle Beach, SC 29577, that would not show up in the dataset, but if 11 people or families made that same move, it would."

Zach Wichter of concluded: “It really seems like people are just leaving the densest neighborhoods to go to places where they may be able to get a bit more bang for their buck.”

He continued: “Millions of the most popular moves last year were within the same zip code and the same county, illustrating the desire for more affordability while staying close to home. It will be interesting to see if people have relocated permanently, or if they will return to their previous locations once we return to some sense of normalcy following the pandemic.”