The Golden State lost nearly 200,000 residents last year, but they aren’t going far—here are the cities and states they’re looking to move to

California Highway
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

California is losing residents.

According to CNBC Special Correspondent Jane Wells and her research into the 2019 U.S. Census, California lost an estimated 190,000 residents last year. Wells stated on Twitter that the number is based on state-to-state migration, and accounting for births in California during 2018.

This trend isn’t brand new—the state lost 130,000 residents in 2017—and it’s easy to guess why people are moving out of the state. A UCLA study found that Los Angeles residents were unhappy with housing and related costs of living in the city, and there are similar conditions in other major cities like San Francisco. Adding the increasing threat of wildfires, CA residents have become warier about what the future will bring in the Golden State.

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So, where are all those ex-Californians going? shows data on what areas people are searching for potential places to move, providing insight on whether it’s residents in the same or different state, and from which counties (like Los Angeles County, San Francisco County, etc.) people are searching a certain area the most. The data shows that some of the smaller major cities in the West are getting a ton of searches from residents in those larger counties.

In Arizona’s Maricopa County, where Phoenix is located, Los Angeles County and Orange County are the top viewers of homes in the area, along with San Diego County in the top five searchers. Washoe County in Nevada, where Reno is located, has even more searches from Californians—the top six counties to search for real estate in the area are all California, from Northern California’s Sacramento, Alameda, and Placer counties to the state’s major cities San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Los Angeles and Orange County residents are also top viewers of Salt Lake County in Utah, Seattle’s King County in Washington, Bend’s Deschutes County in Oregon, and Boise County in Idaho. Los Angeles citizens are also top searchers of the counties that house the cities of Denver, Colorado; Portland, Oregon; and Kalispell, Montana.

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