For forty years, United Van Lines has reported on moves into and out of states. For 2016, United Van Lines reports California balanced in and out.
Progressives will crow that the 40th Annual Movers Study from United Van Lines shows the number of residents moving out of the Golden State is balanced by the number of new residents moving in.
Take that, conservative doom-sayers!
Looking at underlying data, California falls almost smack in the middle of the pack, at position 21 ranked by percentage of shipments into the State. A total of 24,747 shipments went into or out of California. Of that total, 12,488 (50.5%) were into the State and 12,259 (49.5%) were out of the State.
The dots at the bottom of the interactive map below allow you to switch to any year of the forty years, to see how moving patterns have changed. For instance, click on the leftmost dot for 1978. You will find that in 1978 people were moving from north to south, and from east to west. In 2009, during the depths of the Great Recession, the pattern was similar, north to south and east to west.
If you click through each year, you will find that California was balanced for every year except 1986-87 (mild incoming bias) and 1992-95 and 2005 (strong outgoing periods).
(A similar report for 2016 from U-Hall has not yet been released. The company’s list of top ten “growth cities” in 2015 included the Central Valley city of Manteca and the area near the State capital, Sacramento-Roseville.)
Population estimate for northwest Orange County
What about our own little corner of northwest Orange County?
The data released with the United Van Lines report doesn’t give enough detail to answer that question.
But we can look at ArcGIS population estimates for 2012-2017 (see map below).
Pink areas show spots where population has either shrunk or remained the same. Therefore it is not too surprising that the Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station and the Navy Golf Course show as pink!
Other than swaths of pink with obvious explanations, most of the rest of the map shows 0.1% to 2.6% or more estimated population growth. That’s healthy! But that also means continued pressure on housing, pushing prices up (good for current owners, bad for prospective buyers) and strengthening a pull towards higher density.