Looking More Like New Jersey Every Day

by James A. Bacon

I’ve frequently made the observation that Virginia has been leaking population through domestic migration. However, as recent data published by Old Dominion University’s Strome College of Business make clear, the loss of population through domestic migration is more than offset by net international migration. Between April 1, 2020, and June 30, 2022, Virginia lost nearly 30,000 people through domestic migration, but gained nearly 53,000 through international migration.

That data (shown in the table above) and more can be found in ODU’s 2023 State of the Commonwealth report on Virginia’s economy.

Perhaps the most interesting data tell us the states where people are coming from and the states where Virginians are going to. As can be seen in the tables below, people moving to Virginia in 2021 came mainly from the northeast — New Jersey is at the top of the list — and they’re moving mainly to southern states.

Where they’re coming from…

And where they’re going…

Perhaps most remarkable is the net migration of Virginians to Alabama, Mississippi, and West Virginia — states not on many peoples’ list of lands of economic opportunity.

The loss of population to West Virginia might be explainable by Northern Virginians’ search for affordable housing. But when a net 5,000 people chose Alabama and Mississippi over Virginia in a single year, something is seriously amiss in the Old Dominion.

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18 responses to “Looking More Like New Jersey Every Day”

  1. Super Brain Avatar
    Super Brain

    Easy to move to a lower cost area and keep your present job. The new locality is the one to levy income tax and state employment taxes.

  2. I’ve been considering moving to northern Alabama after retirement for several years, now.

    They do not tax retirement income (from pensions), the weather in that part of the state is warmer than Virginia (enough to pretty much eliminate snow, but not hot like Florida), and the Barber Motorsports Park and Vintage Motorsports Museum is a very short distance northeast of Birmingham.

    1. Nancy Naive Avatar
      Nancy Naive

      Just for completeness, the coldest I have ever been was in Montgomery.

      1. LarrytheG Avatar

        And also keep in mind, there is a reason why they say Hotlanta!

      2. The coldest I have ever been was in Kosa*, Russia.

        *The Kosa located in Perm Krai, not the one in Rostov Oblast.

        1. Nancy Naive Avatar
          Nancy Naive

          Well, it’s supposed to be cold there!

  3. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
    James Wyatt Whitehead

    Virgersey. The new Garden State.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar

      I’m thinking Virginia voters are more and more like New Jersey voters, no?

      1. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
        James Wyatt Whitehead


        1. LarrytheG Avatar

          off track?

          1. Thomas Carter Avatar
            Thomas Carter

            We can only hope they want to keep what they might have come for.

          2. how_it_works Avatar

            Federal jobs?

    2. Stephen Haner Avatar
      Stephen Haner

      I coined Taxiginia a while back…

      1. LarrytheG Avatar

        way better than Virginatucky.

      2. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
        James Wyatt Whitehead

        Powhatan’s Confederacy called Virginia this: Tsenacomoco. Now each transplant should have to say that 10 times fast before they move in.

  4. Eric the half a troll Avatar
    Eric the half a troll

    Out with the old… in with the… young…?

  5. Super Brain Avatar
    Super Brain

    Virginia does not tax SS and offers a possible retirement exclusion up to 24,000 depending on age, filing status, and Federal AGI.
    Another thing I will never qualify for.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar

      10K for retired military also and spousal tax adjustment and more military and non-military:



      Many folks who do their own miss these and as does some commercial software programs.

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