Study: More people choosing to leave Indiana than move in

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.-- Indiana may be having some trouble when it comes to holding on to its residents.

A new study from United Van Lines says more people left the Hoosier state in 2016 than moved in.

Those numbers only reflect those people who used United Van Lines, but Indiana Business Research Center Demographer Matt Kinghorn says they do point to a current trend.

“Most indications are pointing to a net out migration of residents in recent years,” Kinghorn said.

Simply put, more people are leaving Indiana compared to those coming in.

Since 2010 Indiana’s overall population has actually increased, and typically the state brings in more people than it loses; but recently that hasn’t been the case. Kinghorn says can likely be blamed on the recession.

“Even in the Indianapolis metro area you’re seeing fewer people move from Marion counties to suburban counties and in northwest Indiana you’re seeing fewer people move from Chicago to Lake County,” said Kinghorn.

As the state economy trends up, Kinghorn says the migration will balance but for now its catching the eye of number-crunchers like him.

“There’s just kind of a general slowdown in migration right now,” he said.

Despite the migration trend the tourism business hasn’t been affected.

According to the Indiana Office of Tourism, 2015 was a record year for people visiting the Hoosier state. More than 77 million took in the sights. Housing prices and sales have also increased in and around downtown Indianapolis, which could be the beginning of a turning tide.

“We’re just seeing fewer people moving in rather than moving out, so what we need to focus on is kind of that jobs magnet or that housing magnet that will help draw more people to the state rather than leaving the state,” said Kinghorn.

Indiana isn’t the only state to see this migration trend. Other states like Illinois are also having this issue.