SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) – If you have ever thought of leaving the Bay Area because of sky-high prices, you are not alone, according to a new survey from the Bay Area Council.
The council, a business-sponsored public policy advocacy organization, polled 1,000 residents from all nine Bay Area counties for their annual survey.
Santa Clara County, home to Silicon Valley, had the highest number of people looking for a new address outside the Bay Area.
“It’s too expensive, it’s too expensive for everyone, to have a normal life, the traffic is terrible,” Erica Sanchez of Santa Clara told KPIX 5, citing the top two reasons among Bay Area residents who want to leave.
Forty percent of those polled are looking to less expensive pastures. Among millennials, 46 percent are inclined to leave in the next few years.
Sanchez, 30, is among those millennials considering a move for her and her family. She pays $3,500 a month to rent a two bedroom in Santa Clara.
“We’re thinking maybe Tracy, Lathrop, we’ve even thought about Antioch,” Sanchez said.
Jim Wunderman, President and CEO of the Bay Area Council, told KPIX 5, “Our real concern is that the economy of the Bay Area could be at stake and the quality of life that goes along with it.”
Andre Evangelesta of San Jose said, “Housing prices are so high that it definitely makes me want to move elsewhere.”
Housing problems, traffic, and homelessness and income inequality ranked high on the list of problems.
While prices are high, Adam Wheeler of San Jose notes, “The Bay Area offers so much in terms of like things to do.”
“We can go two-and-a-half hours northeast snowboarding, we can go two hours south be on an awesome beach, or go to Yosemite or go to Napa Valley it kind of offsets the high cost of living,” said Wheeler, who works at Apple.
The survey also found that optimism overall is down from three years ago, when more than half of the people surveyed thought that the Bay Area was headed in the right direction.