How Vermont Became a Top Destination for Migrants From These States


Vermont is a tiny state in the northeastern United States that is noted for its natural beauty, progressive politics, and high standard of living.

In recent years, Vermont has also been a favorite destination for folks looking to escape the city hustle, epidemic stress, or political unrest in other states. According to the United States Census Bureau, Vermont had the greatest net migration rate in the country in 2020, with over 8,000 persons relocating to the state.

Where Did They Come From?

The bulk of newcomers to Vermont came from surrounding Northeastern states including New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Hampshire.

These states contain among of the greatest population densities, costs of living, and COVID-19 instances in the country, which may have influenced some people to look for a calmer and safer area to reside. For example, New York City, which was heavily impacted by the epidemic, lost over 300,000 people in 2020, with many relocating to Vermont and other adjacent states.

However, Vermont also drew individuals from other parts of the country, including the South, Midwest, and West. Some of these migrants were lured to Vermont because of its image as a progressive and environmentally friendly state, which contrasted with the conservative and climate-skeptical policies of some of their home states.

For example, Vermont was one of the first states to legalize same-sex marriage, marijuana, and physician-assisted death, and it has one of the lowest carbon footprints in the country. Others were drawn to Vermont because of its economic potential, particularly in health care, education, and technology, all of which have shown to be reasonably durable during the crisis.

What Did They Take With Them?

The inflow of immigrants from many states into Vermont has had both beneficial and bad consequences for the state’s economy, society, and culture. On the one hand, newcomers have contributed skills, talents, variety, and spending power to Vermont, boosting the labor force, tax base, innovation, and tourism.

For example, some migrants have founded or joined companies, NGOs, or community groups in Vermont that have produced jobs, given services, or addressed social concerns. On the other side, the newcomers have brought with them problems, disputes, and pressures that have tested Vermont’s infrastructure, resources, and identity.

For example, some migrants have increased demand and costs for housing, land, and utilities, making it more difficult for locals, particularly low-income and young Vermonters, to purchase or access them. Furthermore, some migrants have fought with locals on political, cultural, or environmental principles, such as gun rights, school choice, or development plans, causing tensions or animosity among certain Vermont residents.

What Does This Indicate for the Future?

The trend of individuals relocating from other states to Vermont is anticipated to continue in the foreseeable future, as the pandemic, economy, and environment transform people’s lives, work, and travel habits.

Vermont has plenty to give and gain from these migrants, but there is also much to safeguard and balance. As a result, Vermont must plan and prepare for the benefits and difficulties that come with being a magnet state, as well as cultivate a feeling of belonging and collaboration among its varied and dynamic people.

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