About 3 out of every 5 New Jersey residents say they would like to move out of the state at some point, an all-time high in 15 years of polling, Monmouth University said Monday.
The new Monmouth University Poll found 59% of residents desiring to leave, even though about two-thirds of residents also consider the state a good or excellent place to live.
“It’s a bit of a head-scratcher. Positive ratings of New Jersey as a place to live have ticked up a bit. But so has the sense that people want to get out of here someday. One possible explanation is that residents appreciate the benefits that New Jersey has to offer, but the cost of living does not make it sustainable in the long run,” Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a statement.
Setting aside desire, the poll found 36% of residents consider it "very likely" they actually will leave the state, also a new high. There was a huge jump among people under age 35 in particular.
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Whereas previous polls found a similar desire to leave among all political affiliations, now there is a substantially higher interest in moving among Republicans and independents than among Democrats.
Across the board, aspiring leavers cite a familiar set of motives - property taxes, income taxes, housing costs and general cost of living.
The telephone poll of 802 adults was conducted March 31 to April 4 and has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.