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Top 10 states to which Gen Zers are moving (and the states they are leaving)

Feb 9, 2024

New Zillow analysis finds Texas, California top the list of Gen Z relocation destinations

SEATTLE, Feb. 9, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Gen Z may prioritize job opportunities and sunshine over affordability when moving out of state. A new Zillow® analysis of the U.S. Census Bureau's 2022 American Community Survey (ACS) finds Gen Z interstate movers flocked to California, even as the state experienced the highest outbound migration among all out-of-state movers. 

Nearly 215,000 movers left California in 2022, yet the Golden State saw a net positive gain of nearly 44,000 Gen Z adults who moved there from other states, according to the data released in October.  

It's not just California. Gen Z movers, excluding students, migrated to other relatively more expensive states compared to all interstate movers. Washington, Colorado and Virginia were among the top 10 states with the highest Gen Z net migration but had minimal or negative net migration among all movers who switched states. 

More than three-quarters of Gen Z adults who moved to these pricier states are renting (77%). An analysis of ACS data shows renters can expect to pay more per month to rent in California ($1,856), Washington ($1,592), Colorado ($1,594) and Virginia ($1,440) versus the median rental price nationally ($1,300).   

"Compared to all interstate movers, Gen Z adults who moved to California, Washington, Colorado or Virginia were more likely to have a four-year college degree, more likely to be serving in the military, and more likely to work in tech, ACS data shows," said Edward Berchick, a principal population scientist at Zillow. "Gen Z movers are likely drawn to the job opportunities in these states, despite the higher costs of housing. They may also be in a stage of life where they're willing and able to be flexible in their standards of living while starting their careers." 

Texas far and away gained the most Gen Z movers. When adding up inbound and subtracting outbound moves, the Lone Star State had a net gain of more than 76,000 Gen Z movers. California gained the second highest number, followed by Florida, which saw the highest net migration among all interstate movers. 

Michigan, Maryland and Idaho had the lowest Gen Z net migration. Michigan was the only state where more Gen Z movers departed than arrived.   

In Zillow's analysis of ACS data, Gen Z is defined as those born between 1996 and 2004. To avoid capturing the temporary moves of college students, these statistics exclude respondents who reported attending school in the past three months. 

Top 10 states for Gen Z out-of-state movers


Top 10 states for all out-of-state movers



Net migration


Net migration

1.       Texas


1.       Florida


2.       California


2.       Texas


3.       Florida


3.       Georgia


4.       North Carolina


4.       South Carolina


5.       Washington


5.       Arizona


6.       Colorado


6.       North Carolina


7.       Virginia


7.       Connecticut


8.       Illinois


8.       Tennessee


9.       Georgia


9.       Oklahoma


10.   Arizona


10.   Nevada


Bottom 10 states for Gen Z out-of-state movers


Bottom 10 states for all out-of-state movers



Net migration


Net migration

1.       Michigan


1.       California


2.       Maryland


2.       New York


3.       Idaho


3.       Illinois


4.       Vermont


4.       Maryland


5.       Maine


5.       Massachusetts


6.       South Dakota


6.       New Jersey


7.       Delaware


7.       Louisiana


8.       Rhode Island


8.       Pennsylvania


9.       New Hampshire


9.       Oregon


10.   West Virginia


10.   Utah


About Zillow Group
Zillow Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: Z and ZG) is reimagining real estate to make home a reality for more and more people. As the most visited real estate website in the United States, Zillow and its affiliates help people find and get the home they want by connecting them with digital solutions, great partners, and easier buying, selling, financing and renting experiences. 

Zillow Group's affiliates, subsidiaries and brands include Zillow®, Zillow Premier Agent®, Zillow Home Loans℠, Trulia®, Out East®, StreetEasy®, HotPads®, ShowingTime+℠, Spruce® and Follow Up Boss®. 

All marks herein are owned by MFTB Holdco, Inc., a Zillow affiliate. Zillow Home Loans, LLC is an Equal Housing Lender, NMLS #10287 ( © 2023 MFTB Holdco, Inc., a Zillow affiliate.


SOURCE Zillow Group, Inc.

For further information: Amanda Pendleton, Zillow,