Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Gallup: Half of Illinois wants to move

A recent Gallup survey found that half of Illinois and Connecticut residents want to move to another state. On the other hand, only 19% of Illinois respondents say it’s at all likely they’ll do so.

Among Illinoisans who say they’re very likely to move, 26% said the reason was work or business related (the national average was 31%). The second biggest reason was Weather/Location (and I can’t blame them for that…) at 17% (11% national average). The other possible reasons were: Quality of life/Change at 15% (9% nationally), Cost of Living at 9% and Taxes at 8%. Tied for last place were Family/Friends and School-related, both at 6%.

Quite frankly, I would’ve expected taxes to be much higher on the list, given how often Illinoisans I know—all over the political spectrum—complain about them. The reality probably is that everyone complains about taxes, but that doesn’t seem to be a particularly strong motivator for moving. In fact, most of us would probably think that the top three reasons that Illinoisans wanted to move were reasonable.

Still, it may seem a bit of a surprise that half of the Illinoisans surveyed wanted to move away. This surprise has to be tempered a bit by the fact that people move around all the time.

The three states with lowest percentage of people saying they wanted to move were Hawaii, Maine and Montana, each with 23%. They, together with New Hampshire, Oregon and Texas—with 24% wanting to leave—make up the six states where fewer than one quarter of respondents reported wanting to leave.

Had I not found Nigel and moved to New Zealand, I might have moved away, too, and my reason would have been “Change” (possibly with “Weather” nipping at its heels…). In the end, of course, that’s what I got, and it turned out great. As I often say, I was moving TO something, not FROM something, and I think that makes all the difference.

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