Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Millennials leaving rural America for expensive big cities; believe living in cities equals success

Millennials are increasingly leaving behind small-town America for expensive big cities, Beau Dure reports for Ozy, a daily digital magazine. From 2007 to 2013 the population of millennials in Arlington, Va., across the Potomac River from Washington D.C., grew 82 percent. The median home price in Arlington in 2014 was $557,250 and most apartments were listed at more than $1,200 a month.

Robert Lang, professor of urban growth and population dynamics at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, told Dure that millennials “continue a multigenerational pattern of young adults preferring more expensive urban areas over lower-cost rural ones because the lifestyles and opportunities in such places make the extra burden of cost worth it." Millennials equate getting to a big city with achieving success. Speaking of her peers, Brittany Shoot, a 20-year-old living in San Francisco, told Dure, “We don’t all hail from small Midwestern towns, but most came from places where they felt limited—small town Maine, suburban west Texas, California’s Central Valley and the Inland Empire. It’s easy to find people who will sneeringly complain about how trapped they felt as teenagers.” (Nielsen graphic)
Dure writes, "From 2007 to 2013, the 10 counties that gained the most millennial residents had a median home price of $406,800. And the average population of those counties was 587,522—a far cry from small-town living. Baby boomers filled out the other side of the equation by flocking to counties with average populations of 261,232 and a median home price of $144,875. So the best answer as to why millennials are moving away from smaller towns may be simple: because they can. And small towns will have to rev up their sales pitch to convince young adults that they can live not just cheaply but also well in the places that older generations called home."

No comments: