12,603 Hawaii residents left last year
From Hawaii Matters, Sept 20, 2022
Hawaii residents are leaving the state in droves. But, why?
I mean, we have great beaches, great food, great weather. I mean, it’s Hawaii, right?
I mean, just look at this place. Why would anyone want to leave here?
Well, the main reason is because it’s just so expensive.
Now, let me explain.
Hawaii’s population has been declining since 2016. Last year, over 12,000 Hawaii residents — on net — moved to the mainland. And they’re moving to California, Texas, Washington, North Carolina and other states.
So, why are they leaving? Well, the cost of living, of course.
A recent survey showed that 47% of residents said the cost of living was the main reason they considered moving away, and other top reasons were more job opportunities elsewhere and because housing in Hawaii is just too expensive.
Only 29% of residents can even afford to buy a home in the islands. And that’s understandable, since the median home price on Oahu, Maui and Kauai is over a million dollars.
We asked former Hawaii residents why they moved away, and we got a lot of responses. Ashlynn Sakaria said: “In Hawaii, we could never think of owning a home. As hard as it was to leave Hawaii, we knew we had to do better for our daughter.”
Over 50 other Hawaii residents shared their stories with us, and you can find their stories in the description.
So, it’s clear: Hawaii’s cost of living is sending residents fleeing from the islands.
And it’s no wonder — Hawaii has the highest cost of living in the nation. We have the highest grocery bills, the highest housing costs, the highest electricity costs, the highest transportation costs, and we pay among the highest income taxes in the nation.
But it’s interesting that many Hawaii residents are moving to states with low income taxes, and some states with no income taxes at all. Nevada, Texas and Washington state have no income taxes, and many Hawaii residents are moving to those states.
So, yes, Hawaii is really expensive. But it doesn’t have to be that way. If you want to learn more about why Hawaii is so expensive and whether that could change, click on the next video.
And if you’ve ever thought about moving away, or maybe you already did, tell us your story in the comments. We’d really like to hear it.
Thanks so much for watching, and I’ll see you next time.