Las Vegas a Top Destination for Californians Moving out of State

Las Vegas a Top Destination for Californians Moving out of State

The Las Vegas Strip and skyline, including various hotels and casinos, in Las Vegas on Oct. 18, 2016. (Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)

Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

8/27/2023

Updated: 12/30/2023

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Las Vegas is the most popular location for relocating home buyers nationwide, topping Redfin’s list for the first time—with Californians making up the largest group of new residents in the Southern Nevada hot spot, according to a study by the national real estate group.
“Buyers with the freedom and inclination to relocate are choosing Las Vegas largely because their money goes a long way there: Its typical home sells for $412,000, less than half the price of a home in Los Angeles, the most common origin for buyers moving to Las Vegas,” Redfin stated in a report published last month.
The news was not surprising for the city’s real estate association, which has about 17,000 members.
“After COVID, a lot of people realized they don’t have to live in a certain area if they have certain job descriptions,” Las Vegas Realtors President Lee Barrett told The Epoch Times.
Besides more affordable home prices, many people moving to Sin City are also discovering how much the city offers outside of casinos, Mr. Barrett added.
“We have all the things a regular city has, and we have more of it than people realize,” he said. “It’s a good place to raise a family and a good place to run your business.”
Homes next to a golf course in the Summerlin community as some homeowner associations remove ornamental grass to conserve water during the western drought from Las Vegas on July 20, 2021. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

Homes next to a golf course in the Summerlin community as some homeowner associations remove ornamental grass to conserve water during the western drought from Las Vegas on July 20, 2021. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

The growing city of about 656,300, according to 2022 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, also has mountain hiking, a ski resort, a symphony, shopping, a theater, and an NHL franchise, the Vegas Golden Knights, which won its first Stanley Cup championship this year.
The Las Vegas Raiders of the NFL moved to the city from Oakland in 2020, and MLB’s Oakland A’s have agreed to move to Las Vegas after the end of the 2024 season.
The city has also signed a Formula 1 racing contract for the next 10 years, Mr. Barrett said.
The amenities, opportunities, safety, and family-friendly activities have also lured Hollywood celebrities recently.
Actors Mark Wahlberg, Holly Madison, and Dean Cain have recently relocated to the city.
Nevada also has no state income tax, adding to the draw.
“If you’re an extremely wealthy person, it’s a benefit to live in a state where there’s no income tax,” Mr. Barrett said. “If you still want to be close to Los Angeles to work, Las Vegas is a way to do that.”
An apartment building in Los Angeles on Oct. 20, 2021. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

An apartment building in Los Angeles on Oct. 20, 2021. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

The influx of Californians and other out-of-towners has caused a shortage of housing, which has plummeted since last year, according to Las Vegas Realtor.
For instance, in August 2022, 10,644 single-family homes were on the market, which then dropped by nearly 40 percent in July 2023 to 6,031.
According to Mr. Barrett, developers are now building more apartment complexes and condominiums as a result.
The median price for existing single-family homes sold in Southern Nevada, which includes Las Vegas, in July was $450,000, up by 2 percent from June, but down by 3.2 percent from July 2022, according to Las Vegas Realtors.
Median home prices in the region are still below the all-time record of $482,000 set in May 2022, the organization reported in an Aug. 8 press release.
Specifically for the Las Vegas market, the median price for a single-family home was $790,644 in July, which was a 2 percent increase over June’s median, Las Vegas Realtor reported.
The condominium and townhouse market in the city in July was significantly less expensive, with a median of $333,109, according to Las Vegas Realtor.
Meanwhile, the median home price in California was $786,400 in July, Redfin reported.
Although prices in Las Vegas remain high compared with prices in many other regions in the United States, they are lower than in many California cities, including Los Angeles, which currently has a median of $830,000; Orange County, with a median of $1,059,000; and San Diego, with a median of $835,000, according to Irvine-based CoreLogic’s latest data as of June.
Homes await buyers in the city of Irvine, Calif., on Sept. 21, 2020. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

Homes await buyers in the city of Irvine, Calif., on Sept. 21, 2020. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

Phoenix, Arizona, and Tampa, Florida, are the next most popular cities for people to relocate to nationally, Redfin reported. Both those city’s states have lower medians, at $420,000 and $390,000, respectively, than California’s, according to national real estate service Zillow.
According to Redfin, five of the 10 most popular destinations for relocations are in Florida, which has no state income tax. The Sunshine State also has a low corporate income tax of 5.5 percent, a 6 percent state sales tax, and a maximum local sales tax of 2 percent, according to the Tax Foundation, the nation’s leading nonpartisan tax policy nonprofit.
According to a different Redfin survey, 20 percent of those who moved to a new city in the past year did so for a lower cost of living. Fifteen percent of those surveyed said they wanted a better deal on a home, and 13 percent said they couldn’t afford a home or the cost of living in their previous area.
The Redfin survey in May and June consisted of 884 respondents who indicated they moved from one metro area to another in the previous 12 months.
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Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

Author

Jill McLaughlin is an award-winning journalist covering politics, environment, and statewide issues. She has been a reporter and editor for newspapers in Oregon, Nevada, and New Mexico. Jill was born in Yosemite National Park and enjoys the majestic outdoors, traveling, golfing, and hiking.

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