Should you stay or should you go? A leaving LA conversation with Warren Olney

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It has become so expensive in the LA Area that beaches, warm winters and cultural diversity aren’t enough anymore to keep a lot of people from moving away. Many have struggled with staying here, and many have left. What happens to a city when there’s a loss of economic diversity?

“If you look at out of state migration, the vast majority are folks that are making below $50,000 a year, if you look at within state migration, the folks who are moving from coastal areas like L.A. and Orange County into more inland economies like the Inland Empire what you see are these are folks who otherwise would’ve been in the pool to buy a home in LA but for the prices, ” said Jordan Levine, director of economic research at Beacon Economics. These people become commuters, hanging on to their good jobs while buying in the Inland Empire. It’s interesting just how much housing costs affect migration.

So how does this all change a region? Los Angeles Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne said that L.A. is a city in limbo. Currently, L.A. doesn’t have all the necessary tools for dense urban living — but it will. “I think the promise of Los Angeles always was in the post war decades that you could even as a middle class family, afford to move here and get a slice of that LA dream which meant a single family house and a garden, said Hawthorne. “And I think we’re moving into a new phase, I call the Third LA.”

But it isn’t easy as we grow out of a suburban lifestyle. “The chief challenges are this affordability and the end of that dream of the single family house,” said Hawthorne.

This is part of a series looking at why people are choosing to move out of Los Angeles. Are you leaving Southern California? Share your story!