New Data Shows Americans Aren't Leaving Their Hometowns

March 21st 2015

Laura Donovan

Though many high school students dream of one day getting away from their hometown and exploring what else the world has to offer, they'll likely go back where they started at some point. So claims a new survey by Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor, which found that more half of the participants reported living very close to their childhood neighborhoods.

That's not to say these folks haven't lived other places. Thirty-five percent of survey responders currently residing near the areas in which they grew up have lived elsewhere at other points in their life. This excludes moving somewhere for college and the military. For whatever reason, those who had the chance to get out at some point came back. Deep South natives were most likely to have left before, whereas those in rural areas were more likely to stick to their roots and stay put. 

While many of these people choose to stay, they wouldn't necessarily encourage the younger crowd to live there as well. Just half of responders said they'd recommend their hometowns to young people. People in rural areas were the least enthusiastic about telling young people to move there whereas city inhabitants showed the most excitement over this prospect. 

It would take a lot for some of these folks to move away, such as a good job or a nicer area overall. But Cleveland resident Marilyn Brown doesn't plan on uprooting her life anytime soon, as she believes problems will follow her. 

“What good is that going to do me to leave here?" she said in an interview with The Atlantic. "I’d just be jumping out of the frying pan into the fire. Everybody is having problems with one thing or another."

Besides, it's not everything to move to a glamorous, much-talked-about city in America. New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer just released information from a study finding that New Yorkers work the most and have horrendous commutes, even more so than famously congested Los Angeles. It's also very hard to afford good quality of life in the Manhattan area. Why would anyone want to abandon the familiarity of their hometown, where their families might reside, for that kind of stress? Those who are feeling brave and seeking change, however, might want to consider Midwestern gem Minnesota. It's looking pretty good right now.