According to figures from the US Postal Service, the population of Michigan has decreased over the past year. More than 186,000 people departed the state between January 2021 and February 2022, while almost 170,000 people migrated in. According to the 2020 Census, Michigan has the fifth-lowest rate of population increase, continuing a trend that began ten years ago.
Why is Michigan witnessing an exodus?
People choose to leave Michigan for a variety of reasons, some of the more prevalent ones being:
Economic difficulties: Michigan’s economy has experienced difficulties, especially in the wake of the Great Recession and the car industry’s collapse. The state is confronted with a lower median household income and a higher unemployment rate than the national average. Many people move to other states in search of better employment possibilities and higher pay.
Climate preferences: Not everyone finds Michigan’s chilly, snowy winters to be particularly pleasant. With an average annual temperature of 44.4 F and approximately 149 inches of snowfall, some individuals prefer warmer, brighter climates, especially as they get older or retire.
Concerns about the quality of life: Michigan does not perform well on measures of the quality of life, such as a high rate of poverty, a short life expectancy, and a high rate of crime. Roads, bridges, and water systems throughout the state need urgent maintenance and improvement. People searching for better living conditions abroad are often influenced by their dissatisfaction with the public education, healthcare, and public services systems.
Where are people relocating to?
The top 10 states where individuals are relocating from Michigan, per USPS data, are as follows:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
These states have things in common that draw people from Michigan, such as:
- Warmer climates: Most of these states experience milder winters and higher average temperatures than Michigan. For example, Florida has an average annual temperature of 70.7 F and minimal snowfall. Many individuals appreciate the sunshine and outdoor activities these states offer.
- Lower taxes: Several of these states impose lower taxes than Michigan, particularly in income and property taxes. Texas, for instance, has no state income tax and a lower effective property tax rate than Michigan. Many people are seeking ways to save money and reduce their tax burden in these states.
- More opportunities: Many of these states provide greater economic opportunities, especially in sectors like technology, healthcare, and tourism. Texas, with a lower unemployment rate and higher median household income than Michigan, attracts individuals seeking better employment prospects and higher incomes.
The population of Michigan is declining as more individuals move out of the state than move in. A poorer standard of living, unfavorable weather, and a lack of economic possibilities are major causes of this tendency. States with more possibilities, less taxes, and nicer weather are the states that Michiganders want to move to.