83 Percent of Renters Want Out of New York City

published Oct 10, 2017
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(Image credit: Natalie Jeffcott)

It’s not surprising to learn that there are a lot of people who want to leave their expensive cities for a lower cost of living. But what is a little surprising? The concentration of people who want to move out of the Big Apple—a whopping 83.2 percent of renters in New York City want to settle elsewhere, according to a Apartment List’s annual survey.

And it’s not just New York City residents who want a change—large percentages of people in major metro areas up and down the east and west coasts as well as in some rapidly growing inland metros and cities in the Rust Belt are looking to relocate, too. According to the survey (of 24,000 people), 82% of people in San Francisco want to move, along with 76% in Los Angeles. Not much further down the list, Boston, Albany, Milwaukee, Detroit, Cleveland, St. Louis and Hartford, CT all hit percentages over 80 percent as well, with Miami, Washington D.C. and Philadelphia trailing behind in the high 70s.

Where are New Yorkers moving?

Apartment List’s data uncovered the top three destinations for renters leaving each of 50 different metros. You can see the full results for every city in a slideshow on the site, but here is a snapshot of where weary NYC’ers are settling:

#1: Bridgeport, Connecticut
#2: Washington D.C.
#3: Los Angeles, California

Why Renters Are Leaving Big Cities in Big Numbers

For the vast majority, it’s mostly about money and opportunities. 34% of those surveyed said they plan to leave for job opportunities, while another 30% said they’d leave because of affordability (the biggest concern for cost of living was from renters in New York and San Francisco—shocker). Safety was only a concern for 8 percent of people surveyed, while commute time and weather both got votes from 7 percent of renters. Only 5 percent want to move because of dating and friendship.

If you’re wondering where renters are actually content with their current cities, look to the Sunbelt in Arizona, Florida and Texas, where the percentages of people planning to leave are all under 70 percent. Curious to know the most content metro area in the country? It’s a tie between San Antonio, Texas, and Louisville, Kentucky, each with 45 percent of renters planning to stay.

You can check out more detailed data and some interactive maps and charts on Apartment List.

What about you? Are you happy where you are or do you dream of putting down roots somewhere else?