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San Diego's exodus crisis

In early 2014, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that the high cost of living here was forcing young families to move away.

Mike Stetz, OUR CITY SAN DIEGO

Monday, July 25, 2016

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“The primary reason San Diego residents are leaving is the high cost of housing,” said Kelly Cunningham, an economist with the National University System Institute for Policy Research. “This happens even as job growth occurs.”

...San Diego’s economy has a propensity to create two types of jobs: high-paying high-tech jobs and low-paying tourism and service-oriented jobs. Those in the upper bracket are fine. The rest are not. Households earning $50,000 per year or less are disproportionately migrating out of San Diego and California to other states.

“It is the Santa Barbara-ization of San Diego,” Cunningham said in 2014, when he issued the first report expressing concern with housing prices. “We could end up with high-end and low-end residents and no one in the middle.” 

Cunningham’s earlier study was something of a shocker in that he noted San Diego was losing a key demographic: young families. Since the end of the recession, the number of people ages 35 to 39 dropped by 5 percent. The number of young people ages 10 to 19 fell by the same percentage.