There are 4.6 million unemployed Millennials, two million of which have been unemployed more than 27 weeks.
Why are America’s Millennials, the generation hit the hardest by the prolonged recovery of the job market, moving to cities with a comparatively higher cost of living? Because, to quote infamous bank robber Willie Sutton, that’s where the money is, or at least the promise of it.
A new RealtyTrac real estate market trends report culled from Census population data between 2007 and 2013 in more than 1,800 counties nationwide finds that America’s 18-29 year-olds are making a calculated tradeoff. “Millennials are attracted to markets with good job prospects and low unemployment, but tend to have higher rental rates and high home-price appreciation, Daren Blomquist, vice president of RealtyTrac, said in a statement.
Some four-in-ten of unemployed workers are Millennials, according to a Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce analysis of U.S. Census date as reported by MarketWatch. This equates to 4.6 million unemployed Millennials, two million of which have been unemployed more than 27 weeks.
And yet Millennial optimism in their prospects is undimmed. A majority (55 percent) expect their financial situation to be stronger in a year, according to a 2014 Spectrem's Millionaire Corner wealth level study of non-Millionaire Millennials with a net worth of at least $100,000.
The national unemployment rate is 6.1. In the 10 U.S. counties seeing the highest influx of Millennials, the average unemployment rate is 5.2 percent. The average household income is $62,496 compared with just over $51,000 nationally. But in these counties, on average, it’s $1,619 a month to rent a three-bedroom apartment compared with the national average of $1,550.
Where are the top markets for Millennials:
- Arlington County, VA
- Alexandria City, VA
- Orleans Parish, LA
- San Francisco County, Calif
- Denver County, Colo
- Montgomery County, Tenn
- Hudson County, N.J.
- New York County, N.Y.
- Multnomah County, Ore
- Davidson County, Tenn.
Arlington County and Alexandria City, both in the Washington D.C. metro area, saw an increase of Millennials within the six year period surveyed of 82 percent and 81 percent, respectively. Not coincidentally, the unemployment rate for the former is 3.2 percent and the latter 3.6 percent.
If this is where Millennials are moving to, where are they moving from? Primarily, the RealtyTrac survey finds, Millennials are moving away from counties with a smaller population (average 178,277) to counties with a larger population (average 587,522). The top market losing millennials between 2007 and 2013 was Fayette County, Ga., in the Atlanta metro area, which saw a 31 percent decrease in the millennial population, followed by Citrus County, Fla., in the Homosassa Springs metro area which saw a decrease of Millennials of 27 percent.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.