Listening to Myself

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Moving On

According to this Contra Costa Times article, 25% of all Californians and a third of Californians under the age of 35 are considering moving elsewhere in the state or out of state. That seems to me to be a pretty big chunk of people, although I'd be curious to see stats on that for other states.

At least I'm not alone I suppose...

So then, the question becomes: Where do you go?

Nick Gillespie has a very interesting article over at Reason, titled "Jayhawk Down: Economic freedom may be just another word for nothing else to do". Forbes just put together a new "U.S. Economic Freedom Index," and found that Kansas is the top ranking state in terms of economic freedom (based on a weighted average of 150 defining characteristics), whereas California and New York are 49th and 50th, respectively. So why do so many people live in New York and California if they are such troublesome places to live? Gillespie conjectures that for most people and businesses, economic freedom is simply not a big consideration in choosing where to live. Rather, we choose based on culture and percieved economic and entertainment opportunities.

Living in Huntsville [Texas] and, less dramatically, in Oxford [Ohio] taught me that the price of a house didn't simply reflect the cost of living but also the demand for living in a given area. If you can't move a five bedroom house at $100,000, there ain't a lot of living going on.

Gillespie himself has had a rather interesting wander through different areas of the US, both large and small. And where is he living now? In Washington D.C., where his rent on a 3 bedroom apartment is about a $1000 more than his mortgage payment for the 5 bedroom, 3500 sq. foot home he recently sold in Ohio.

So I wonder, just how many of those Californians will actually end up moving?


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