Net “In-Migration” Increases Across Puget Sound

A look at monthly in-migration trends courtesy of Dupre + Scott reveals a 16% year-to-date increase in population flow to the Puget Sound Area.  The data set considers the total number of new drivers license applications and reduces by the number of residents that are returning their license seeking a principal residence in another state.  This means a high number of people continue to move to the Evergreen state, which leaves just one question: why?

Well, for one, the Seattle metro area is seeing growth, particularly in the form of high-tech jobs that are drawing millennials to the area.  According to a recent report by commercial broker Jones Lang LaSalle, six of the 10 largest office tenants in the region are in the high-tech industry.  They cite Seattle’s talented workforce, collaborative startup environment (with ample venture capital) and no doubt, the lack of a state income tax as being contributing factors.   Meanwhile Bloomberg named Washington the “most innovative state in the nation” for similar reasons.   Then The Seattle Times recently reported, tech-giant Microsoft eclipsed Exxon and became the second most valuable company in the U.S., despite its sometimes rocky past. The article says, “the Redmond, Washington company has earned greater cachet on Wall Street over the last 18 months. Its stock has risen nearly 70 percent since April 2013 . . . and hit $50.14 on Friday, its highest point since early 2000.” High in-migration levels may also coincide with the growth of Amazon, as the giant recently filed plans to build up to three more buildings just north of downtown Seattle, in addition to the campus it is currently constructing.

Given the success of technology-centric jobs in the area along with Seattle’s quickly heightening status as one of the coolest cities in the U.S., we can definitely see just why the Puget Sound Region is experiencing this heightened population influx.