- More residents are leaving San Francisco than any other city in the country, according to data from real estate website Redfin.
- A growing number of those considering the move are Silicon Valley investors, The New York Times reports.
- The migration has become so intense that it’s creating a shortage of U-Haul vans in the Bay Area, and inflating prices so that it costs thousands to go from San Jose to Las Vegas, but only $100 to go in the opposite direction.
- Startup founders and venture capitalists have little reason to stay and invest in expensive real estate, especially since today’s technology makes working remotely so seamless.
The sky-high rent and cost of living that we’ve come to expect from the Bay Area might have finally taken their toll on a large proportion of residents. A huge wave of people are considering more affordable cities outside of the tech capital of the world, and they’re taking their startups — and investors — with them, as Kevin Roose reported in The New York Times.
San Francisco lost more residents than any other city in the country in the last quarter of 2017, according to data from real estate website Redfin, which sampled a million users. The data factored in the number of residents that cities gained, meaning San Francisco lost a net 15,489 residents; about 24% more than the next highest loser on the list, New York City.
This is expected to continue into 2018, considering that as of February 2018, 49% of Bay Area residents were looking to move out of San Francisco, according to a survey by public relations firm Edelman.
If that data isn’t enough evidence of a heavy migration, consider the shortage of U-Haul moving vans in the Bay Area, which has inflated costs so much that it costs $2,000 to rent a truck from San Jose to Las Vegas — but only costs $100 the other way around, according to local news reporter Michelle Robertson from SFGate. In fact, it costs twice as much to rent a truck from San Jose to almost any other destination city than to rent the same vehicle in the opposite direction.
The migration away from San Francisco isn’t a completely new phenomenon, since rent has been increasing at an incredible rate for years. But the recent tax reform has made life even more expensive for residents, pushing entrepreneurs (and their ideas) towards fast-growing metros. Others, like Peter Thiel, who can afford the price to live there, have attributed their move to a more left-leaning and less tolerant cultural atmosphere that leaves little room for freedom of opinion.
Many investors, like those referenced in Roose’s New York Times article, are finding that cities outside of San Francisco are thriving with opportunity. Startup founders and venture capitalists have little reason to stay and invest in expensive real estate, especially since applications like Slack, the inter-company messaging platform, and video conferencing tools make working remotely so seamless.
You can read more about how Silicon Valley investors are feeling about life outside of the Bay Area over at The New York Times.