Here’s how many people moved out of California in 2023

New year, new you.

For some who desired a fresh start, that meant starting a new life in a different state.

A study conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau revealed tens of thousands of Californians sought life elsewhere, with many citing the high cost of living as a reason for leaving. Even several celebrities said goodbye to sunny California, including Mark Wahlberg who said his family is "happy" in Las Vegas, and Jessica Simpson who moved to Tennessee where she’s "not on guard." 

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Learn more about 2023’s migration trends below.

Goodbye, California

The study revealed more people continue to leave the Golden State. 


San Francisco (Photo by Hoberman Collection/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Overall, 75,423 Californians left in 2023.

That's a lot of people, but still, it's crowded in the big cities and traffic continues to be a nightmare.

However, it wasn't the state that saw the biggest population decline. That honor goes to New York, which saw a population dip of nearly 102,000.


Los Angeles. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Another study conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau indicates the top 5 states former Californians moved to were Texas, Arizona, Florida, Washington and Nevada.


Despite the number of people who left, California remained the most populous state with 38,965,193 people in mid-2023.


States with the highest populations (U.S. Census Bureau).  (U.S. Census Bureau)

Other states that saw more people moving out were Hawaii (-4,261), Illinois (-32,826), Louisiana (-14,274), Oregon (-6,021), Pennsylvania (-10,408) and West Virginia (-3,964). 

Nationwide Trend 

The nation gained more than 1.6 million residents between July 1, 2022 and July 1, 2023, and researchers said population trends are returning to pre-pandemic levels. As more people moved into the U.S., some residents moved to other states.

So, where are people going? 

The study indicates that the Southern states – from Texas and eastbound – saw the biggest population increase and accounted for 87% of the nation’s growth.


Population Change (U.S. Census Bureau).

Texas, Florida, and North Carolina were the top three states that saw the largest population increases.  

Overall, more people moved South while fewer people Northeast. The Northeast was the only region in the U.S. that saw a population dip.

Out of all 50 states, New York saw the largest population decline, as FOX 11's sister station FOX 5 New York reported