Roper: A red flag in that United Van Lines migration study

By Rob Roper

The moving company United Van Lines had some good news for Vermont in its 2017 survey of who’s moving to where, and who’s moving from where. They reported, “Vermont had the highest percentage of inbound migration in 2017 with nearly 68 percent of moves to and from the state being inbound.” This didn’t seem to jibe with Census numbers showing Vermont as being one of only three states to experience an actual population decline, so Bill Sayre and Rob Roper interviewed Michael Stoll of UVL on Common Sense Radio.

Rob Roper

Rob Roper is the president of the Ethan Allen Institute.

Stoll pointed out that the UVL survey was not scientific and was limited to just UVL customers. It did not account for people who used do-it-yourself services such as U-Haul or those who use their own vehicles to move. UVL is a full service, relatively expensive moving service. Stoll confirmed that the Census numbers are a more reliable measure of what’s really happening in the big picture.

Stoll also revealed some interesting information that was not part of their released report, and that is the reasons why their customers were moving. According to Stoll, the UVL customers moving into Vermont were older and doing so largely because they were retired and/or wanted to be closer to family. Those moving out, however, were younger and did so largely for reasons connected to employment. In other words, they got a job, or a better job, somewhere else.

This is not good news for a state that is trying to increase its labor force, build its tax base, and keep from having the oldest population in the nation.

Rob Roper is president of the Ethan Allen Institute. Reprinted with permission from the Ethan Allen Institute Blog.

Image courtesy of Public domain

5 thoughts on “Roper: A red flag in that United Van Lines migration study

  1. Did UVL have the contract to relocate the “refugees” that were settled into our state last year?? That could easily screw up their #s. The people moving out can’t afford UVL as the reason most are leaving is the high cost of living here and the ‘no jobs’ climate. They have to find the least expensive means to get out, not the ‘luxury’ edition.

    And our govt’s answer is “lets raise the taxes so more will be attracted to our state”. Yeah, that should work. What could possibly go wrong?

  2. What a biased bit of information, I know many that have moved from VT due to being overtaxed.
    Be it property, School or Retirement Incomes from Social Security, Military, Business !!

    With Vermont’s tax base, along with no real jobs ( Career ) base, why stay when you can drive
    with in a few hours or a few days and get a lower tax base and a Job ………..

    Wake up VT, you cannot tax your way out of your foolish spending ( Budget Deficit ) !!

    • The United Van Lines data is much like any poll, and should be taken as such. But Mr. Roper’s commentary is anything but biased and it supports your contention, if you think about it.

      Why are young people (like my kids) finding better job opportunities in other states?

      It appears that the taxes productive businesses and individuals pay in Vermont to further subsidize low income Vermonters are disproportionately high compared to the taxes they pay in other states like NH. The net result is that Vermont’s school system is producing a less well trained work force, low income families have an incentive to move to Vermont and young productive Vermonters are choosing to get out of ‘Dodge’ while they can.

      • “and young productive Vermonters are choosing to get out of ‘Dodge’ while they can.”

        Bingo. We took our three kids with us, two that were in school and the 3rd still not quite old enough. The student population will continue to decline and the school budgets will continue to do the opposite. It’s a dead end road, and the end won’t be pretty if your around to see it.

  3. I moved out of Vermont last year, didn’t use UVL. We did a self pack freight company. They dropped off a 28′ trailer and you packed it, called them to pick it up and delivered it 1000 miles away in 3 days. Done deal for a fraction of the cost of UVL.

    And yes we are the younger cohort that found a lower cost of living in another state, a state that appreciates someone who is considered a “high wage earner” and doesn’t look at them like a piggy bank with a target on their back.

    Oh what a relief it is!

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