Los Angeles one of the top area Americans are ditching: Areas losing Americans but gaining people from outside the country.

I’ve talked about the reality that many native Californians have been leaving the state in droves over the past decade.  Many are moving to lower cost areas much to the dismay of locals in places like Texas.  The California effect has impacted many areas in the Southwest driving real estate prices higher.  An interesting article popped up in my feed this week about the top 20 areas where Americans are ditching.  No surprise, the Los Angeles metro area is right on the list.  Reasons for people leaving the area?  Ridiculous housing prices and people not wanting to live like sardines and pretend they are living the highlife.  The poser crap shack buyers are somehow deluding themselves thinking that all of this is sustainable and good for the economy but all it does is recreates a favela like atmosphere.  The LA/OC area is already the most expensive in the nation relative to incomes and home prices.  You would think San Francisco and New York would lead the list but people in those areas actually make higher incomes overall.  Let us take a look at this trend more deeply.

The moving chess pieces of American cities

The trend is simple to understand.  Locals can’t afford housing prices and are moving in with mom and dad or leaving the area.  Home sales go to wealthier foreigners:

“(Bloomberg) Interestingly, these are also the cities with some of the highest net inflows of people from outside the country. That gives many of these cities a steadily growing population, despite the net exodus of people moving within the U.S.

So what’s going on here? Michael Stoll, a professor of public policy and urban planning at the University of California Los Angeles, has an idea. Soaring home prices are pushing local residents out and scaring away potential new ones from other parts of the country, he said. (Everyone knows how unaffordable the Manhattan area has become.)”

Here is the map:

where people are leaving

Of course the crap shack cheerleaders see this as a positive while people vote with their feet and money.  Many are renting.  Many are leaving.  And some are super-leveraging into these properties.  The foreign money arrives in certain markets but not all.  We’ve talked about this before but people are picking up on this:

“And as Americans leave, people from abroad move in to these bustling cities to fill the vacant low-skilled jobs. They are able to do so by living in what Stoll calls “creative housing arrangements” in which they pack six to eight individuals, or two to four families, into one apartment or home. It’s an arrangement that most Americans just aren’t willing to pursue, and even many immigrants decide it’s not for them as time goes by, he said.”

I love how people just assume that sardine living is what “others” will do so therefore, demand will always be there.  Americans are not buying this.  Texas has been a big recipient of Californians heading out.  Look at this chart:


The big driving factor of course is housing.  What is interesting is that since the housing bubble imploded in epic fashion, the drive up in prices has come because of investors and foreign money.  All of this on the back of thin sales volume.  California has shifted into rental Armageddon mode where household formation is happening in the rental category while the homeownership rate declines.

Some think the American Dream is to live in some overpriced crap shack and chop away for 30 years on a Great Depression built home.  But this is a minority view and many are simply leaving.  Why earn a low wage in California when you can earn a low wage in Texas and possibly own a home?  I’m sure this is the logic running through the hundreds of thousands that have left.  When we said the middle class is disappearing in California we meant this literally.

SoCal is now one of the top 3 areas of the country where current residents are foreign born:


And many of the recent buyers have come from China.  And this nonsense that households in L.A. make giant sums of money.  The median household income is $55,909 for the county.  How many households make more than $100,000?  Let us take a look:

$100k to $149k (13.6%) – not enough for a crap shack

$150k to $199k (5.9%) – enough for a crap shack

$200k or more (6.6%) – does this crowd want to live in a piece of junk home?

So in reality about 12.5 percent of households can afford a crap shack and keep in mind many of these households already own (and many are welcoming back those lower wage children back home).  So your pool of potential buyers is tiny.  This is why sales have gone stagnant after the investor crowd pulled back.  The big push now is coming from foreign money and highly leveraged households.  As things slow, inventory starts to build up.

It should be no surprise that the L.A. metro area is one of the top areas Americans are ditching.

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106 Responses to “Los Angeles one of the top area Americans are ditching: Areas losing Americans but gaining people from outside the country.”

  • I’m renting in a new part of Irvine. Houses built by non English speakers for non English speakers. I live in the apartments. que demonios, mut guai yeh (“what the hell” in Mexican and Chinaman)

    • Today I had a guy call me from my ad on craigslist. I answered and he started taking Spanish. But that’s not the good part. I responded in English, he paused, and said, “Spanish?” And I replied, “no, only English” (even though I Do speak Spanish!). Guess, what? HE HUNG UP THE PHONE! That’s right, he would not do businesses with me, IN MY COUNTRY, because I did not speak HIS FOREIGN LANGUAGE!

  • People are realizing that Southern California is not worth the price anymore, unless you have mountains of cash or are making north of $250,000 a year. Even, then you are buying in a middle class neighborhood. Who in their right mind would do that, unless they are very high risk casino players. Sure there are some people in that price range, but are you going to pay $700,000 – $1,000,000 for a crap-shack in West LA or Culver City? Housing here has become a total crapshoot for investors only now. If you are planning to buy and live in a house, you have little choice other than to move from here. With stagnant or declining wages, many US city home prices are out of reach for most people. This is happening in more and more cities, as investors move to greener pastures. It will be interesting to see what happens when they start cashing in their chips when prices flatten out and they are in search of greater gains. Or, wait until our old friends on Wall Street start up with their wonderful MBS (Mortgage Backed Securities) machine. Sound familiar?

    People now may want to consider other countries for retirement. The problem in the US is people are afraid to sell their house and buy another because, their new base for maintenance, taxes and insurance takes a huge bite out of their income. Especially when fixed income vehicles (savings accounts) are nil. You almost have to move somewhere else where housing prices compared to your income are reasonable.

    Climate, cost of living and quality of life will have more people moving south to Mexico and other Latin American countries in the future. http://www.taxcomxvilla.weebly.com

    • jdrab11657:

      We get it, you like Mexico and think other people should move there. I think you’ve posted that tired link frequently enough such that you no longer need to do so. Everyone has seen it. Can you stop posting it now? I have no idea why posting it over and over and over is permitted here anyway.

      • My father bought a place in Mexico (Cabo area) almost ten years ago and has watched it blossom around him. He rents it out and goes down there a six~ times a year; it’s not my cup of tea BUT he’s now realized that MX and U.S. cap gains will essentially wipe out his ‘investment’ should he sell. It’s worth twice what he paid, and he’d be lucky to recoup 75% of the purchase price.

        In short, be careful before jumping into MX property. Thankfully this example can be a long-term hold but I’d feel awful if someone sunk it all into a retirement situation and then wanted to reverse course.

    • It’s almost as bad as Big Tex, who’s trying to get us all to move to Texas, with him and Kinky Friedman.

    • People say the same thing here in Chicago, IL. Oh dear the property taxes, income taxes and all sorts of “fees” (more government mandated taxes) are driving out the working class. Yet that is not true. Chicago is going through another housing boom. More new developments and people are tripping over themselves to buy a house in the city. Gentrification is still going strong in the city and it is not going to end. Look, those are just the facts. I wished people would vote with their feet and punish free spending governments. But they are not. Sometimes people throw out their objectivity because they are so invested in a specific outcome they want. There is a difference between what you want and what you get.

      • Um….Nimesh – where exactly is this building going on but for the highrise skybox rentals and the 1.2 to 1.5 mil condo skybox in the downtown area?
        Me thinks your propaganda is misguided. Facts please.

      • RJ Chicago– Look at the zip code on the north side. Then view the past sales histories of properties and you will see huge price increases. People are buying homes for huge valuations. RJ how can all of these people be so wrong? At first I was a housing bear but now housing prices have gone back to the peak 2006 highs and some have even gone up.

        I live in an area that is quickly gentrifying and all of a sudden houses are selling for 500K to 800K.


      • Nimesh, you missed the point of the article, which is:

        people from other countries are moving into LA, native born americans are moving out, of Los Angeles. That isn’t happening in Chicago at the level it is in L.A.


        people in L.A are using roommates, “living like sardines” with many people living in one apartment/house in order to afford buying. Again, it doesn’t happen at that level in Chicago.


    • Los Angeles might be expensive…but I’d rather move to North Dakota than Mexico.

    • son of a landlord

      I’ve a friend who is married a Mexican woman. He has Mexican in-laws and keeps in touch with happenings down there.

      He says that crime and kidnapping is rampant just about everywhere in Mexico. He doesn’t recommend that anyone go down there.

  • Southern California: third-world hellhole.

    • welcome to mexico city del norte

      it’s great if you are part of the 5%

      • Mexico City, and SoCal, is great if you are part of the top 15%.

        The non-bubble parts of the U.S. are great if you are in the top 65%.

  • I am a statistic! Sold the house and moved out of the city of Los Angeles in 2013 Cut the cords completely and moved out of California this past spring. Best thing this baby boomer could have done. No more taco Tuesday for me Doctor.
    Middle class people my age without family or job commitments should get out now. Twice the house at half the price here in flyover country. Did I mention good weather, no water rationing, and gas at 2.66 a gallon.
    When I was young California was the “place you ought to be.” Now not so much.

  • Before reading this article, many months ago, I was making the comment that standard of living is fast decreasing in SoCal. Most of that area will be transformed in areas looking more like a third world country.

    You can’t keep importing millions from third world countries and expect gentrification of SoCal. If there are still those believing that this will not happen, wait and see. The wheels are set in motion.

    • The standard of living is not fast declining in SoCal.

      It’s a slow motion degradation in the standard of living that began with the recession of 1990. The standard of living in SoCal peaked in 1989 when inflation adjusted household income was about $63K (in today’s dollars) in Los Angeles County and the cost of living was reasonable.

      • Hotel California

        ernst, you seem to get the big picture of what’s going on here, which is that there continues to be a slow degradation in the standard of living for the vast majority in SoCal. It’s annoying to have housing speculators project the notion that if you somehow simply lever up to a property in a “prime” area that there’s a vacuum which will insulate you from bearing the costs of said degradation – and by extension of such is that the quick moving temporary cycles cancel the risk of the longer term cycles.

      • Prince Of Heck

        Those same speculators are also patting themselves on the back for miraculously coinciding their purchases with the costly and counter-productive intervention from the government and Fed. Their descendants, like ours, will unfortunately bear the brunt of their actions regardless of real estate paper wealth.
        The only people truly benefiting from the current economic debt “nirvana” are the families of the top 1% of 1%.

      • FresnoResident

        @Prince of Heck

        Well, you forgot about the middle class who have gained large amounts of equity, and of course the 2010-2013 buyers. Everyone is benefiting (temporarily at least) from Fed intervention until the market starts to decline again. And then it depends how much. I’m sure if the prices start to decline, more intervention will occur. I don’t think the powers that be will ever allow a 2008-2010 decline again, and in non-prime areas real estate is nowhere near 2005-2007 levels.

      • “The only people truly benefiting from the current economic debt “nirvana” are the families of the top 1% of 1%.”

        That is a very good and accurate observation. If you are not in the 1% of the 1% you are just a debt slave like everyone else, soon to be as poor as the next slave. Look at the doctors in Cuba where the 1% of the 1% have the whole power and wealth of that country. The top doctors which in most countries are in the top 1%, are in the top 1% in Cuba. However, their standard of living is not too much diferent than the next 99% slaves. That is what a powerful dictatorial government does too people – take all the power and freedon and wealth away. That is what the FED owners are doing in this country.

      • Prince Of Heck


        Whatever benefits middle class homeowners are drawing from these policies are chump change compared to what the afore-mentioned elites are enjoying. Meanwhile, inflation (health, education, food, property taxes, etc.) and weak economic growth (weak job and income growth) are eating away at the middle class lifestyle. A whole generation of potential new home owners, and any associated economic activities, are being shut out of the real estate market.

        Even if they wanted to, what could the Fed and government do that they aren’t already doing to stop another major price decline? They both have already thrown the kitchen sink just to keep the economy growing at a moribund 2%.

  • son of a landlord

    Seems that L.A.’s affluent black areas (Baldwin Hills, Ladera Heights, View Park, Windsor Hills) fear white gentrification: http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-adv-view-park-20150719-story.html#page=1

    • This gentrification is a natural ‘spill over’ of the high cost of homes on the Westside; ie the further from the coastline, the less expensive the home. Home prices gradually decrease along this basic sequence Venice/Santa Monica/Marina Del Rey then West LA, then Westside Village/Rancho Park/Beverlywood then Culver City then Baldwin Vista. So, when relatively well-to-do buyers of SFH find prices even in Culver City too high they are moving into Baldwin Vista and Baldwin Hills. The areas of Baldwin Vista and Baldwin Hills that are West of LaBrea are already in full swing into gentrification. Of course, there are other areas of LA that have nice neighborhoods in same price range but not if you want to be 15min from the beach (with no traffic). The LAT article focuses on the areas East of LaBrea (such as Baldwin Hills Estates) and even East of Crenshaw that are now just beginning to see gentrification.
      I am not saying its a good time to buy, but if you want to be 15min from the beach and pay under $650K for a 2000 sqft midcentury home, look into Baldwin Vista (bounded by LaCienega to LaBrea, from the Expo Line down to Kenneth Hahn park).

      • son of a landlord

        “if you want to be 15min from the beach and pay under $650K for a 2000 sqft midcentury home, look into Baldwin Vista”

        I doubt you can get from Baldwin Vista to the beach in normal L.A. traffic. It takes me more time than that to drive from one end of Santa Monica to the other.

        It took me nearly 40 minutes to drive from Santa Monica’s Ocean Avenue to UCLA. And that was at around 11 a.m., when rush hour was supposedly over.

      • Hotel California

        landlord, I can only assume he’s referring to the time it takes to drive down Slauson or Jefferson to reach Dockweiler beach.

        For starters, outside of people that live right on the beach and the surfer type crowd, I’d bet my house that the vast majority of people don’t go to the beach on any sort of regular basis. Anyone who has lived in SoCal long enough knows that’s the case. It’s less about going to the beach than it is about being close to the beach.

        All that said, Dockweiler is ghetto and the parking sucks (like all of the other L.A. county beaches) for times when most people are actually going to it.

        As for the claim of 15 minutes, that would be during a time when no one wants to go to the beach because at any other time there’s a ton of traffic and Culver City has done a great job at making sure you hit every red light along the way. A more realistic equation would be more along the lines of 20-25 minutes plus the time it takes to find parking, get to a spot, and truly be “at the beach.”

      • @ son of landlord.
        I was referring to Saturday and Sunday mornings +/- 8am or 9am from the intersection of LaCienega and Jefferson – up to 10 fwy and down 10fwy to the beaches along PCH is about a 15 minute drive. During summer, the 10fwy westbound jams up around 10am when all the mid city and eastsiders wake up from their hangovers and decide they want to go to the beach :). By the time I leave the beach for backhome, (when the good waves have subsided) the 10 fwy westbound is a good half hour drive, or further…..
        Another route to the beach from Baldwin Vista is simply to take Jefferson to Duquesne, then Duquesne to Venice Blvd. that is about 20 minute drive on a weekend morning.
        Surf’s Up!

  • Yes, I see that Texas is number one. Some people would say that the Republicans and Independents are leaving California in the great reshuffle. That leaves California with a one party state with all the corruption that goes with a one party socialist state where government workers eat up much of the taxes with little left over for government services like roads and sidewalks, like in the Peoples Republic of Los Angeles(a failed city like Detroit). When The City(SFO) folks stop paying the bill for the state, then it will really go the way of Puerto Rico and Detroit.

    • You’re from Texas and you’re talking about how California is a one party state? Pot meet kettle.

      Tell Kinky I said hello!

  • To be honest, I’d probably rather move to Detroit over Texas.

  • I believe Texas is 250K cheaper in median price home than CA.

    Anyone see those new home sales today.

    Wow, No Housing Nirvana In This Economic Cycle

    3 Real Time Live Demand Charts that all of you can use when people tell you Housing Is Booming


  • “To be honest, I’d probably rather move to Detroit over Texas”.

    Tejas would be one of the last spots I would relocate to. Reno is close to lake Tahoe and has a pretty good airport for getting out of Dodge. Lots of great places to be within a few day drive,not to mention great skiing, dirt biking, kayaking, fishing, etc. On a budget, that would be my choice.

  • California is broke. State employees are overpaid and there is a huge deficit paying huge pensions. So the Franchise Tax Board is getting very aggressive and abusive. Texas has no state income tax. Florida also. Cali residents are tired of paying so much in state taxes for declining quality of life and poor state services and are voting with their feet. Add in the bubble in real estate that’s going to crash and no wonder they are getting out now.

    • If you can’t beat them join them.

      I work for the state I make less than $50,000 but I get great benefits.

      I plan to retire at 56 with full medical and little less than 50% pension.

      I can do it because I have no wife no kids and a small inheritance

    • I don’t like paying state income taxes, so I gave some thought recently to moving to a no tax state. When I checked my tax records, I found that I payed $6,000 in state income tax last year on $150K income. That’s only $500 a month, the electric bill for A/C will be almost that much in the summer, in Texas or Nevada. I think I’ll stay a while longer in my old Crapshack, here in Oxnard, aka gangland-by-the-Sea.

      • Try $1000.00 a month for your power bill in the summer months in Nevada, Las Vegas anyway.

      • @Lynn Chase, unfortunately, the problem with landscape architecture design in the western part of the United States is that it consists of a house built on a thick concrete slab on a lot that has been stripped of all trees. This is why utility bills are way too high out here.

        Building a house one story above ground and two stories below ground, with ivy covered walls and trees to provide shade would mitigate the utility cost. Unfortunately, this requires thinking outside the box which is something most home builders fail to do.

      • Carlos from Oxnard, the Newport Beach

        Yes, living is good at the Marina here on my boat. My cousin has the taco stand nearby, so it is taco Tuesday(no taco truck, a permanent stand) everyday here along with Corona and watermelon. The living is easy here. I am a real estate broker here and can get the gringos some good real estate here. I take them out in my low rider for authenticity, the yuppies are really after authenticity you know. I even taught my parrot some Spanish.

      • Ivy covered walls and trees require lots of water which is in short supply in the in places like Arizona, SoCal and other Southwestern states.

      • ernst blofeld

        @Clarion, water is not in short supply.

        If water were in short supply we would not be inundated with the “oceans are rising!!!! AND ALL COASTAL CITIES WILL SOON BE UNDERWATER!!!!!!!!!” cries from the climate change groups.

        We do not have a lack of water. We have a lack of potable water. If the climate change groups are correct we will soon have *TOO* much water in the oceans.

      • How do you only pay $6000 in state taxes?

        You prob sent California a nice check at tax time

        At $150K you should be paying over enough to itemize on your taxs, which ends up being less taxes than non-itemizing

        What am I missing here?

    • Also, Washington doesn’t have income tax. Strong economy, low population, lots of natural beauty and varied climate. With the exception of area around Seattle, house prices are very affordable.

      • Washington has no income tax but, instead, funds everything with very high sales and property taxes. There’s a reason why billionaires flock to Washington — they don’t have to pay any taxes. The infrastructure is falling apart and the school system is billions underfunded. The state legislature is in contempt of court for failing to properly fund the schools to the minimum required by the state constitution.

      • The schools in WA are doing far better than CA. Property taxes are the same or lower than CA. Property taxes are far lower than OR or TX.

        That being said, I am not an advocate for property taxes. From my point of view the lower, the better. Sales taxes are not higher than CA. That being said, the smaller the better. I can barely support my family. I don’t want to keep few other families of illegals on top of the banking cartel controling this country; it would break my back. If CA residents enjoy that, that is their business and their fault for electing year after year the same gang of leaches.

      • What a lot of people do is move to Vancouver, WA for the no income tax, and then drive across the bridge to Portland for no sales tax shopping.

  • Excellent analysis, Dr.

    I would just like to say: you are lucky over there that you have alternatives to move to within the same country. This is a major factor in overall US economic and social resilience.

    Pity the younger generation and lower income earners in countries like the UK, Australia and New Zealand, where every single city is “Californian” in its house pricing and options. Even rural towns with no income opportunity tend to be more costly than Houston.

    I guess people in the UK do have some options within the European Union; Germany, and some cities in France and some cities in Italy are far more affordable than UK cities, but this is still not quite as easy as “going to Texas” is for a Californian. And what can Australians and NZ-ers do?

    • Of course the existence of gouging urban land prices in cities in the New World that are surrounded by abundant developable land (as in Australia and NZ) is evidence that restrictions on sprawl (or accidental proxies for it) is the culprit.

    • “And what can Australians and NZ-ers do?”

      Come to the U.S.! They’d be much better neighbors than some other immigrants I can think of…

    • I’m from NZ and this is very true. While how things are here are frustrating I can’t imagine the mental hell of no escape.
      It’s actually worse than how you are describing it: the median in Sydney is now over one million. Think Fontana at that price point and you will get the idea.

    • What can NZ’ers and Australians do? They can pass laws to prevent Chinese nationals from buying residential property in their countries.

      • Or, Australia and NZ could have policies that meant that more houses got built to meet whatever demand there was, this is how the affordable markets in the USA stay affordable even when they are growing like wildfire.

        This economist is absolutely right:


        “…imagine if Auckland substantially relaxed its constraints against density in town and against expansion on the fringes.

        Foreign and domestic capital could then build new subdivisions, new houses, new mid-rises, new townhouses and new apartment buildings for Auckland rather than simply drive up the price of existing houses. Housing affordability would improve. Fewer people would have to live in overcrowded conditions.

        And, an Auckland with sensible land use policy would also see less racism.

        Nobody worries about foreigners buying up all our lamb, our Weet-Bix, or our Marmite. If demand for those goes up, we can produce more of them.

        Auckland’s tight restrictions against new building fuel not only a housing shortage but also build a political market for racism.

        If a tsunami of foreign capital really is available, isn’t it time Auckland changed the rules so that some of it could build new houses? Let’s not waste this crisitunity…”

        That is part of the secret of the success of Texas’ economy, is it not? Whatever the investment from wherever, it boosts the real economy, not non-productive asset prices.

  • Yep.The preordained future for the 97% of the population in a country formerly called USA.Studios&one bedroom highrise apartments, dollar stores,GMO food,CNN TV in English ,Obamacare with a free flu shots,free Obama cell phones,more CNN TV in Spanglish,mandatory vaccinations for kids& grown ups,family dollar stores,junk food joints with slides and no place else to go, cause it will be all the same anyway.

    “If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—for ever.”George Orwell, 1984

    • Prince Of Heck

      Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength. The real reasons why our electorate continues to vote for both sides of the same bad coin.

    • Spot on, but it’s a Prole’s World. We recently dropped out of the DFW Metroplex (Very high property taxes), and retired to the rural Smokies and 1/5th the property taxes. Who wants to live in the Beehive? Most

  • I notice on the map that San Jose is estimated to have between 350k and 700k foreign born. I believe that the number is on the high end for sure. Well, I was born and raised in that area. Silicon Valley has changed the area in ways most people can’t relate to. Where I lived the shopping centers were all Asian oriented. The influx of foreign born Asians is beyond what I could have ever imagined. Also, there are homeless everywhere and the place is dirty. It breaks my heart to see the decline. I do not attribute that to the Asian population. Traffic is horrendous and, in my opinion, pretty much on par with LA. On the way to work one day I was sitting in heavy traffic waiting for a light. I looked around and I was completely surrounded by Asians. My neighborhood is a very heavy majority Asian. The overall culture has changed drastically over the last 15 years. They are, for the most part, very nice people who keep up their property and obey the laws. Property values are among the highest in the country. This due to the Silicon Valley job market. If you’re not a high tech employee or work for government then finding a good paying job that will allow a home purchase is almost impossible.
    There is a huge underclass living from day to day or on welfare and food stamps. Because, of this I believe middle class America is being forced out of the area. About a year ago we sold our home and moved to a much prettier area in California that fits our life style much better. Quality of life issues are totally important.

    • Where did you move to? Have lived in the SF Bay Area for the past 33 years and have noticed the unfortunate changes taking place. Thinking of moving away within California or up north to Oregon.

      • It all depends on fiancés, if you have a good monthly income or need to work just some time than a move to a small town could fill the bill. Moving to another city like Portland or Denver lends itself to the same nonsense crime and losers abound. Do I have to remind everybody of Columbine or Aurora, if that was CA. they would be crucified in the news. As I traveled to many places again if you have the income and accept a slower lifestyle Prescott Valley Arizona ( population 135k) with great all year climate ( 5,000 ft elevation like Denver without the 60 in of snow) and very nice housing with plenty of shopping including COSTCO AND Sam’s CLUB ( Ha ha), largest pine forest in the world, fishing in the backcountry, and rather short distance with two major interstate two highways to Sedona and Flagstaff and highway 89 ( 4 lane) to I 40 to Ca. Las Vegas, or points East. I 17 gets you back to Phoenix in a hour drive.

        Yes it is very conservative grant you that and very clean with nice housing developments so if you are inclined not to keep a nice house, look for weekend trouble at the local establishments than don’t go there. Just thought some of you who want to cash out of the Golden state this is one nice area for young and retired.

    • FresnoResident

      Another bonus to living in some mediocre weather fly-over states other than an improved quality of life: little to no homeless population. Bums are everywhere in Cali. Visited Des Moines last summer, not one homeless person. Just clean, middle class folks. No BS, no drama.

      • Des Moines has hot humid Summers and cold humid Winters. For those who can cope with that, it works.

        My preference is anywhere in the west US because over all it has drier climate. But that is just me.

      • FresnoResident

        Which flyover states/cities have tolerable weather that also have jobs?

  • Arizona has always wanted to be California, and now it is …

  • O well, with the Global warmingz, Oregon should be the new perfect coastal weather spot down the road. And with legalized weed, that is the spot to move to. Lots of jobs in the pot industries for the great unwashed masses with no hi tech skills.

    • We lived in the Portland for 7 years after leaving SoCal. The mountains and terrain surrounding Portland are nice to visit, but it rains too much in Portland, traffic sucks, housing is expensive , and average wage levels are relatively low. We hated all the obnoxious white liberals who dominate that city and their far left radical politics. Most of them are self hating Marxist enviro-nazis who constantly prattle on and on about the evils of white privilege and microaggressions. We left for eastern Washington near the Canadian border.

      • Good observation and good move! Except, the NE WA is colder than SE WA – an average of 10 degrees colder. But I agree; far better than Portland in terms of standard of living and quality of life.

      • We moved to Portland from LA last year, and we love it. I like rain and cool weather, I own a successful business in LA that I can run from home, and we’re former musicians who are liberal leaning and atheist. It’s pretty much paradise, for me.

        While not being cheap, I can’t imagine why you’d think the housing is expensive in Portland (and the traffic is bad,) if you came from SoCal. The houses in town are much, much cheaper than in LA, and it rarely takes me longer than 10 minutes to get anywhere.

  • Born and raised in California but spent my career in Denver. Many if those fleeing Cali are headed here. Now, after several fits and starts, Denver is quickly becoming just another Los Angeles. Soon, there will be no vacant piece of land between Colorado Springs and Fort Collins and the foothills will be filled in as well. Traffic to and from the mountains on a weekend is akin to PCH on a Saturday afternoon in Newport Beach or Laguna Beach. Fortunately, I have found my new best place, bought a second home, but please it is atrocious, nasty, the weather is horrible, so you won’t want to live here … I will be out on my boat for the rest of the day!

    • imfromcolorado

      Born and raised in Denver and I love my home. Unfortunately, what you say is correct. I can understand why people from CA are sick and tired of the prices, traffic, etc…but many of them are coming here and bringing CA problems with them. Congestion, politics, and the development of every square inch of the front range are the problems I see. And it’s only just beginning. (It’s not just Californians, though. people are moving here from all over the place.)

      Just today there’s an article in The Colorado Statesman about how some lawmakers in Denver county want to legalize the use of pot in clubs, bars, and other venues around town. The complaint is that people from out of town are “allowed to buy marijuana products, but are not allowed to use them anywhere.” This is truly disgusting that we are now tailoring our city to meet the needs of drug users. Dispensaries on every corner aren’t enough? I understand the logic behind people not spending 30 years in prison for smoking pot. Yes the legalization brings some economic development, jobs, tourism…but it has negatively impacted the opportunities of people who want to buy homes and live in them vs. rent them out to pot tourists/use as grow houses. The widespread recreational use here has really changed the culture of our city. It seems everywhere I go, I end up smelling it somewhere, and I’m sick of it.

      I know plenty of people are moving to Denver, but I for one am planning on making a plan to move to a smaller city.

      • More Enlightened

        “This is truly disgusting that we are now tailoring our city to meet the needs of drug users.”


        As if ALCOHOL is not a drug . . . . and bars and other legal establishments where alcohol is sold are not in the drug dispensing business already . . .

  • Isn’t this called ethnic cleansing and genocide?

    Sure looks like it from here.

  • Left for Seattle 8 years ago. I still visit family and friends in LA. On the last visit, my best buddy was still asking when we might move back. It was hard for him to grasp that my wife and I don’t have any desire to return. My buddy lives in what was recently appraised at 2 million dollar bungalow near Lincoln in Venice. Despite the price, he can’t send his kids to local schools. He went out of town for a weekend and asked if we wanted to housesit. My wife and I were not remotely interested (despite the fact it’s a cute, tricked out house). I would never let my 12 yo girl play outside, let alone walk a couple of blocks to the market. Pure craziness between his place and the market. Here in Seattle (which is not by any means a cheap city), I rent a cute house for about 2K. My daughter walks to school and to the local market without any worries.

    • son of a landlord

      Which neighborhood in Seattle?

      I hear Seattle has a lot of property crime. Plenty of squatters, burglars, and car break-ins.

      • Laura Louzader

        Almost every city, suburb, and town has a lot of property crime- burglaries, break-ins, and squatters. The only way to be really safe is to be in a really well-secured apt building, above the ground, and with dead-bolt locks on solid doors (that means no windows in them).

        Looked at Seattle’s crime rates and they are very low relative to most large cities, and are in fact lower than most suburbs of most large cities. Low crime rates, beautiful scenery, and relatively refined people, make Seattle a very desirable place to live… if you can afford it.

      • So is crime lower in Seattle than other cities? Not anymore. Statistics for 2014 show that many crimes were on the rise in the Emerald City, contributing to why some people say they don’t feel safe.

        Police say crime was up about 13 percent overall compared to 2013. In 2014, 29.554 crimes were reported in Seattle. Police say homicides were up 21 percent, and aggravated assaults were up 14 percent.

        There were 84 rapes, compared to 81 in 2013, up 4 percent. The report shows 1,502 aggravated assaults, up 183 from 2013, a 14 percent increase.

        Motor vehicle thefts were up a whopping 44 percent and car prowls and other car related thefts are up 15 percent. Larceny and thefts other than motor vehicle account for more than two-thirds of the overall increase, up more than 2,300 over 2013.


        People living and working in north Seattle, especially along Aurora Avenue, are fed up with crime. New Seattle police numbers show robberies and assaults are on the rise in 2015. Crime is nothing new on Aurora Avenue but the recent spike in violent crime has people on edge.


      • SOL,

        Depends where you go in Seattle Metro. If you have the money, go to Medina or Mercer Island. If you have less, go to Bellevue or Kirkland or Alki Beach (west Seattle). All these areas are very nice and safe.

        I lived in many places in the Seattle area and I know it very well. If I would buy in Mercer Island or Medina it would take most of my money and I don’t like debt. If I would have to live there, I would buy in Bellevue or Kirkland as close as possible to Lake WA.

        I don’t have to live there anymore and 4 nice places I like in NW are (in no particular order; dependds what you like): Orcas Island, Coupville (Widbey Island), Coeur D’Alene (ID) or Walla Walla (WA). All 4 places offer and excellent standard of living at affordable prices, all four with way less jobs that SoCal or Seattle metro area.

        Depends what you like and enjoy. Personally, after living in many places in SoCal and WA, for the right combination of pros and cons and because of my personal preference, I chose Walla Walla.

      • Laura Lauzader

        It is true, that among big cities, Seattle is one of the nicest, cleanest, educated and wealthy city in US. It is also very competitive on the international market. I lived and worked there for decades. That being said, it is a big city with all the problems of a big city.

        Personaly I don’t like big cities. I worked there because I had to. As soon as I could, I moved out. Some of the satelite cities like Kirkland and Bellevue are nice, but too crowded for my taste. Also, it rains more than SoCal and the traffic just as bad.

    • I feel the same way about being in Portland, KidPsyche, after living in LA for so long. I barely even want to go back to visit. Don’t miss it at all.

  • I wouldn’t live like a sardine in that hell hole of illegals, libtards, and welfare ho’s (some are all of the above) if you paid me $100,000/yr.
    In fact, I turned down exactly that 20 years ago when it was MUCH better than today.

    • Time to turnoff FAUX news dude!

      • Janum would prefer you only spout leftist propaganda from the other alphabet channels like MSNBC.

    • You have to take your news ONLY from MSNBC, CNN, and CNBC….OK, Washington Post, too. If not, you are not a good intelectual citizen. Actually, it might be dangerous to your health:-)))

  • Interesting so the vast majority of the people who live in San Francisco are foreign born ? It makes sense as when I was selling homes in SF a few years back, it was mostly to foreigners in love with the name plate of the place.

  • “…favela like atmosphere.”

    I say you nailed it.

    Just a thought.


  • The willingness of many immigrant groups to put bunkbeds in every room and pack multiple generations into a small home is distorting the market wildly. The trend of globalization has been to use the lower expectations of people in developing countries to put pressure on people in developed countries. It’s as true with housing in SoCal as it’s been with wages for years now.

    Wages are great right now if you like ramen noodles and cat food. And housing prices are great if you really, really miss seeing both sets of grandparents, four aunts, one uncle, and eleven cousins as soon as you get out of bed.

  • Doc, I mentioned part of this trend in a comment here several years ago, and you went and made a blog post countering the idea that a lot of Asians were buying up property and causing prices to rise. You counterpoint was correct – there are or were areas that didn’t have this characteristic. However, I was in a different area which was experiencing this, and so my perceptions were both narrower, but predictive of the current conditions.

    The South Bay and SELANOC area do have a lot of Asians, but they aren’t the current wave of investors from Taiwan, China and Korea. They’re focused on the SGV and LA Koreatown and downtown areas.

    In retrospect, I think what was happening, and is happening, is that these newer Asian immigrants are buying into existing Asian American communities, and what happens is that people sell and move – and the trend was for people in LA to move to SELANOC, or south county, if they make money in the deal, to poorer areas if they are renters, or out of state if they have better job prospects (where the incomes might not change, but the cost of living is lower).

  • FresnoResident

    Some high end homes are being listed for above peak 2007 prices. Do sellers and their agents think people don’t have access to the internet and public record property sales history?

  • Howard Johnson

    I interpret this as free people choosing not to be enslaved by crooked housing market, corrupt politics and slimy investors driving up prices of thigs people need. I blame it on the fed for forcing investors to send investment capital places it would not typically go with artificially low interest rates and corrupt policies.

  • Seems like prices on high end homes are being sold above 2007 peak prices. A realtor told me a big factor is people with means are desperate to lock into an area which is not being negatively impacted by illegals. Some tell stories of once nice areas that were turned into higher crime areas after gaining a lot of illegal residents. It is creating a flight away from many areas and generating competitive bidding on higher end homes. Manhattan Beach is a prime example of this. This is real bad. It could mean a majority of areas will become poor housing investments since a majority of areas are being impacted by illegals. So, unless you can afford a higher end home, you might want to rent so you don’t get burned with a drop in your home value because of an illegal crime wave.

    • Hotel California

      That doesn’t make sense. Has there been a sudden huge influx of illegal aliens migrating to SoCal in the past few years at a rate greater than what has been experienced for the past several decades?

      Indications are that illegal aliens have been seeking out alternative areas of the country at an increasing rate over the years as they too realize that living in SoCal isn’t necessarily worth the “costs.”

  • junior_bastiat

    I left Cal 8.5 years ago, never regretted it, much better quality of life, lower cost of living and even better weather (for my tastes anyway). No I’m not saying where. But one of the things that hit me and made me pull the trigger is that it was becoming third world. I’ve traveled a lot and told myself if I’m going to live in the third world I want to pay third world prices, not 1st world prices. Lots of decent places outside of the US that are 2nd-3rd world and at least you get what you paid for. So this maker left the golden state and probably 100 or 1000 takers moved in and took my place. My story is not a singular one, there are many like me. You can hate the messenger, but Trump’s focus on immigration is what a lot on the right AND left having been wanting to hear for a LONG time.

    • FresnoResident

      Trump is merely stating, albeit in a hostile manner, what both political parties know–that immigration needs to be dealt with in a very serious way–but taking a strong position that solves the problem alienates so much of their voting populace that none of them will walk that plank. Trump does because he doesn’t give a sh*t and knows he’s not winning the Rep nomination, let alone a general election. California is, and has been, a cesspool of poor, legal and illegal, foreigners. It’s a breath of fresh air when visiting other places where every sign or instruction is not sided next to the same words in Spanish.

      • junior_bastiat

        Trump may not win the Rep nomination, but that will be to him blowing up on other issues or the party itself marginalizing him. I really think Trump should run for the nomination of both parties because his populism is clearly rattling a lot of cages – largely of the elites that control both parties and give us same $%^& different day every election.

      • Prince Of Heck

        The publicly opinionated candidates usually get the early bump prior to the primaries. Their radical messages will eventually be drowned out as primary voters flock towards the safer and less well known candidates. The party kingmakers will not allow radicals to win their presidential nomination.

  • A good read; thanks.

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