Californians Shifting Inside State, Not Leaving

A report released last week found that warnings about California residents fleeing the state are overrated. While San Francisco residents seem to have left the city more frequently, they are more likely to have moved to another location in the Bay Area or the outskirts of the state rather than leaving the state, a trend that followed with earlier patterns matches.

“About two-thirds of San Franciscan movers stay in the Bay Area economic region and nearly 80 percent stay in the state … This is consistent with prepandemic patterns,” said the new report published by the California Policy Lab at the University of California.

“In short, to date, the pandemic has not driven people so much out of California as it has moved them within California,” the report, which is based on credit report data and may not have captured all of the stakeholders from the past year, reads the report concludes.

During the pandemic, the number of people leaving North Bay and moving to North Bay has increased significantly. However, changes in exercise rates are not as high as in other parts of the state.

For example, 5,539 people left Marin County, up 23 percent from 2019, while 4,948 people arrived, up 21 percent from 2019. In total, Marin County recorded 591 net exits, with the number of people arriving subtracted from the number of people departing . The rate was 44.5 percent higher than in 2019.

In Napa County, 2,619 people left the county, an increase of 14 percent from 2019, and 2,326 people arrived, an increase of 11 percent from 2019. Napa County had 293 net exits in 2020, an increase of 21.6 percent from 2019 corresponds to.

In Sonoma County, 7,002 people left the county, up 11 percent from 2019, and 6,415 people arrived, up 7 percent from 2019. Sonoma County had 587 net exits in 2020, an increase of 67.2 percent from 2019 corresponds to.

Overall, North Bay was less affected than many other California counties. San Francisco saw net outlets grow 428.6 percent in 2020 compared to 2019, a trend that caused the city’s sky-high rental market to lose its breath for the first time in decades.

While it’s too early to say what this all means, the California Policy Lab report suggests that the post-pandemic population in North Bay may look different than it was in 2019.

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