31% of young adults moved during Covid. But they don’t give up the cities entirely

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A pandemic migration is underway, at least for young adults aged 18 to 31.

According to a survey by Bankrate.com, 31% of people in this age cohort either moved permanently or for an extended period of time during the pandemic. That’s compared to 16% of adults overall.

Gen Z – ages 18 to 24 – were most likely to take up missions, with 32% relocating. Millennials between the ages of 25 and 40 followed with 26%.

Generation X members ages 41 to 56 and baby boomers ages 57 to 75 were the least likely to move, with 10% and 5% moving respectively.

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The main reason for relocating was to be close to friends and family, which was stated by 31% of respondents. A more affordable life followed with 27% or a move with 21%.

Others were motivated by opportunities for more space, 18%; different climates, 17%; or the ability to work from anywhere, 17%.

While many of the respondents were leaving cities, they did not go far.

In the New York metropolitan area, the five most popular moving locations from Manhattan were less than 15 miles away, Bankrate analyzed using data from the US Postal Service.

In the meantime, people who had left other cities like Austin, Dallas, Houston or Orlando were choosing new home bases less than 30 miles away.

“It really seems like people are only leaving the densest neighborhoods to go to places where they can get a little bit more bang for their buck,” said Zach Wichter, a mortgage and real estate reporter at Bankrate.

Bankrate’s research was based on an online survey of 5,158 adults conducted in February. They also analyzed the U.S. Postal Service’s address change requests from January 1 to December 31, 2020.

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