The latest United States Census Bureau report shows that after most of the country's most populated counties experienced significant declines in population over the last two years, numbers appear to be returning to pre-pandemic levels — nearly everywhere but Los Angeles County.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau's Vintage 2022 estimates, population in Los Angeles County decreased by 90,704 residents between 2021 and 2022, the largest population decline amongst all of the 3,144 counties in the U.S.
However, the rate of loss is significantly less than the county experienced the year prior, when 180,394 people are said to have left the area.
"What I saw over the last three years was a big exodus," said Grace Fogg Miranda, a local realtor. She's among the many who have noted the mass move of people from the pricey area.
Even though L.A. County remains the nation's most populated in the country with 9,721,138 people, data suggests that hundreds of thousands of people have moved in recent years with many ending up in places like Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Oregon, Texas, Florida and Washington.
Miranda says that a major part in the move comes from the ability for individuals to work from home, allowing them to do their job from anywhere — meaning they could move from the costly L.A. County to other more affordable options.
"A second and probably bigger demographic was people who are planning to retire in the next three-to-five years, they saw the prices going up here in Los Angeles, and decided, 'Hey, if I can get this for my house, I'm gonna sell,'" Miranda noted.
Orange County also saw a decrease in population, though not nearly as drastic as L.A.'s, with data showing a 1.1-percent decrease. Riverside County, on the other hand, saw a 2.3-percent jump while San Bernardino County held flat based on the previous report.
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