Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on SmartAsset.com.
Taxpayers with higher adjusted gross income (AGIs) tend to move less than taxpayers with lower AGIs. This could be for a number of reasons, including that higher income taxpayers are often getting older or more established in their careers.
Regardless of the cause, the IRS migration data shows that between 2018 and 2019, approximately 3% of applicants with AGIs between $ 10,000 and $ 50,000 moved to another state.
In comparison, 2.26% of taxpayers with AGIs between $ 100,000 and $ 200,000 moved across state lines in the same years. Although higher earners overall are less likely to move to a state, some states have still seen relatively large influxes of this population group.
In this study, SmartAsset took a closer look at where upper-middle-class people with AGIs between $ 100,000 and $ 200,000 are moving.
Using IRS migration data from 2018 to 2019, we compared upper-middle-class immigration and emigration for each state and Washington, DC.
To learn more about our approach, read the data and methodology section at the end. This is our third annual study of the states where the upper-middle class are moving. View our 2020 edition here.
The following are the states that upper-middle-class people will be moving to in 2021.
Between 2018 and 2019 there was a net migration of around 19,200 upper-middle class taxpayers to Florida.
As a result, about 1.1 million upper-middle-class people filed taxes in 2019, making up 12.85% of all Florida applicants.
With no state income tax, Texas has been a hotspot for the upper-middle class in recent years.
Most recently, between 2018 and 2019, there was a net immigration of 8,700 people from the upper middle class into the state.
Between 2018 and 2019, about 17,300 upper-middle class people moved to Arizona while about 10,100 left the country.
Overall, the net migration of the upper middle class was almost 7,200.
4. North Carolina
Between 2018 and 2019, the net migration of high-income taxpayers to North Carolina was 5,395.
As a result, upper-middle-class applicants made up 14.28% of all tax applicants in North Carolina in 2019.
5. South Carolina
South Carolina follows closely behind North Carolina as a state where the upper-middle class is moving.
From 2018 to 2019, more than 11,600 applicants with AGIs between $ 100,000 and $ 200,000 moved into the state while approximately 6,500 left the country. The total migration balance was 5,096.
Like two of the other states in our top 5 – Florida and Texas – Tennessee does not tax wages and incomes, which means upper-middle-class earners can potentially increase their savings rate.
Between 2018 and 2019, approximately 11,200 upper-middle class people moved to Tennessee while fewer than 7,800 left the country. Overall, the net migration of the upper middle class was 3,409 people.
With a net upper-middle class migration of 3,321, Washington State has the highest percentage of any top 10 states in our list that upper-middle-class people are moving.
According to 2019 IRS data, 19.70% of filers make between $ 100,000 and $ 200,000 annually.
Idaho fell one place in this year’s study after ranking 7th in our 2020 study.
Although the IRS migration data is behind Washington this year, the IRS migration data shows that net upper middle class migration to Idaho actually increased between 2017-2018 and 2018-2019.
From 2017 to 2018 there was a net migration of 2,708 people in the upper middle class, compared with a net migration of 2,887 people from 2018 to 2019.
According to 2018-2019 IRS migration data, about 7,700 upper-middle class people moved to Nevada while fewer than 5,400 left the country.
Overall, net upper middle class migration to Nevada was 2,360, the ninth highest in our study.
Colorado rounds out our list of the top 10 states upper-middle class are moving to.
Between 2018 and 2019, more than 14,400 upper-middle class people moved to the state while fewer than 12,400 left the country.
In 2019, more than 18% of taxpayers earned between $ 100,000 and $ 200,000, the twelfth highest rate in any 50 state and DC
Data and methodology
The data for this study is from the 2018-2019 IRS migration data. To find out where the upper-middle class is moving, we measured the inflows and outflows of people with incomes between $ 100,000 and $ 200,000 for each state and Washington, DC.
We then calculated a net migration number for upper-middle-class filers and ranked all 50 states and Washington, DC accordingly.
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