Millennials move into suburbs and less dense big cities and other urban population shifts

A new report from Trulia looks at where millennials and Baby Boomers moved as well as population growth in cities:

Extrapolating from the census data, a separate report from San Francisco-based real estate research firm Trulia Inc. showed where different age groups lived in 2013. Contrary to popular thought, millennials – Americans 20 to 34 years old – actually moved more into big-city suburbs and lower-density cities rather than dense urban areas. The three fastest growing millennial metropolitan areas were Peabody, Massachusetts, a town north of Boston, Colorado Springs, Colorado and San Antonio.

Americans 50 to 69 years old also flocked most to the “second quartile of counties,” wrote Trulia Chief Economist Jed Kolko, or big city suburbs and lower density cities. The fastest growing areas for baby boomers were Austin, Texas, Raleigh, North Carolina, and Dallas – all places that already have high concentrations of young people. In fact, Austin has the highest share of millennials than any other large metropolitan area, the Trulia report showed…

“The trend in the past year was that boomer growth [took place] in millennials’ favorite places,” Kolko says.

The population of the youngest Americans, or those ages 5 and younger, grew fastest in big cities like Washington, D.C. and New York. Frey has studied demographic changes in New York and says since 2010, there’s been a growth in the under 5 population in all of the boroughs except for Staten Island.

The biggest surprise here seems to be that more millennials moved to “big-city suburbs & lower-density cities.” At the same time, the population growth differences between the four quartiles of counties are not that large – the analysis shows roughly 0.2% differences.

Another note: the South and West continue to lead the way (all those less dense cities due to different zoning rules, annexation policies, and waves of development) in this analysis with the occasional city from elsewhere sneaking in occasionally.

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