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New report shows millennials are leaving coastal cities, choosing central ones

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Charlotte, Austin, Nashville and others are top destinations

A new analysis of a decade’s worth of U.S. Census data shows more and more millennials are settling in cities away from California and the northeast. Posted on Apartment List’s Rentonomics blog, the report found that metro areas in the interior of the country, especially Texas, saw the biggest jumps in young adult population; 8 out of the top 10 large metros for millennial population growth were located away from the coasts, while New York (-5.1 percent), Los Angeles (-15.8 percent), and San Francisco (-0.7 percent) all posted declines.

The cities with the biggest jumps were Charlotte, Houston, and Austin, while those that registered some of the biggest declines in this demographic were in the Midwest and south, specifically Detroit, Miami, and Phoenix. These drops corresponded with income growth, according to analysis by Andrew Woo, suggesting, not surprisingly, wage growth and local job markets play a key role in deciding where to relocate.

Millennial homeownership also continues to drop, falling from 39% to 32% nationwide between 2005 and 2015, with the biggest declines seen in markets with expensive housing and/or poor job growth, including Atlanta and Las Vegas.