Silver is more attractive than gold to Californians

The Golden State isn’t so golden anymore. Californians are fleeing the state in droves, according to reports from the U.S. Census Bureau and the California Legislative Analyst Office.

And, many are showing a preference for silver choosing to relocate to the Silver State where, presently, living is a bit more affordable and taxes are lower, though one does not know for how much longer since Californians have a knack for bringing with them the very issues from which they are fleeing, creating a pseudo California.

Californians are migrating to much of the West and the residents of those states are not too keen about the influx now causing a rise in cost of living, most especially in the housing arena. Only the Lone Star State (Texas) and the Grand Canyon State (Arizona) are welcoming more California transplants than Nevada.

In our information center, daily we talk to Californians hoping to seek asylum from the liberal politics, taxes, unrest, immigration issues, and more now plaguing the once Golden State. This state of almost 40 million is going through some turbulent times, and it doesn’t seem to be getting any less so. In fact, Californians are talking of splitting the state into three separate states: northern, southern and central valley.

In unofficial interviews of our visitors, we are being told Californians don’t much like those they voted into power and are feeling the effects of those liberal choices in their wallets.

Many are relocating from major cities where the cost of living — driven mostly by the cost of housing — has become so unaffordable there is little choice but to move if a middle-class standard is to be maintained. The retired tell us they don’t want their retirements or social security checks taxed.

Income tax — especially amongst the California state government retirees — is of major concern since most of them will continue paying the 9.30 percent or higher, depending on their retirement income level. Nevada is one of the seven states without state income tax and they like Washington State and Texas for the very same reason. Although Arizona has an income tax, it is about half of the California minimum rate — unless AZ voters vote to increase this tax this fall.

The California Dream has become a bit of a nightmare. Right now, more citizens are exiting California than moving there, making the state a national leader in outbound moves, according to the U.S. Census Bureau stats from 2016. The report shows 5 million moved to the Golden State between 2007 and 2016 while 6 million departed.

Wealthier people and those from equally liberal states like New York, New Jersey and Illinois — all states with even higher taxes and controversial governments — are moving to California by the droves while young people with less money are bailing out to the more affordable states such as Texas, Arizona and Nevada, a report from the state’s Legislative Analyst’s Office reveals.

Californians prefer not to wander too far away from their state, thus relocating mostly to border states. They still love their state, have family there, but just want to be able to survive the “golden years” — though not in the Golden State — or be able to buy a home.

We don’t see many young folks coming into the Chamber for relocation information. Nevada DMV stats indicate the California Millennials under 35 are moving to the Las Vegas area where jobs are plentiful, and the cost of homes are still under $300,000 or about $100,00 less than Reno, according to Zillow stats. Millennials don’t seem to mind the summer heat, for they are flocking to Phoenix as well where medium home prices are a much more affordable $230,000. Median home prices in Carson City are $340,000 and rising fast.

The seniors looking to relocate cite our serenity — the state of being calm, peaceful, and untroubled — as a major reason for thinking about relocating here. They’ve had it with traffic and overcrowding. The beauty of our city, the cleanliness, the lack of traffic on Carson Street, the greenery, and just the overall “safe feel” are part of the litany.

According to the City’s Growth Management Report, our city can handle another possible 20-25,000 new residents before we reach “build out.” Wonder what the city will look like at this point, and whether we will be “serene” in another 5-10 years? We can thank I-580 for taking much of the traffic off Carson Street to allow for a more walkable, bikeable community.

If the looky-loos think they want even more serenity and can afford the cost, we send them to Carson Valley. If they want more affordable homes, we send them to Dayton or Yerington.

If you are concerned about the Californication of Nevada, your concern may be real. The U.S. Census Bureau stats show that there were well over 45,000 who relocated to our state from California in 2016. That was two years or so ago, and at the rate we are giving out information, we think the numbers will be much higher. As it now stands, the building industry can’t seem to build housing fast enough.

The primary growth will be in Reno and Las Vegas. We’ll see our share, but the mix may be different.

Growth translates to even more restaurant and retail choices. When we reached the magical number of 50,000 residents, retailers took notice and that’s why we can shop locally at Costco, Home Depot and Lowe’s. Other nationals such as Burlington, Kohl’s and Trader Joe’s came along with a myriad of fast food chains allowing us to eliminate the commute to Reno.

Growth, too, can bring a myriad of issues. We’ll need more fire stations, schools, police and other governmental services.

We wish we had a crystal ball to predict the future of Nevada and Carson City as we see continued growth and can only hope those who run the city will take caution as they make decisions for the future.


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