Roughly 40 percent of Connecticut residents say they likely will move out of the state within the next five years — amid concerns about employment, business conditions, and health insurance costs — according to a recent survey.
Slightly more than 4 in 10 Connecticut residents now say it is likely that they will move out of the state within the next five years, reflecting concerns about a lack of jobs, declining business conditions, and health insurance costs, according to the second-quarter InformCT Consumer Confidence Survey. At the same time, many residents continue to say that Connecticut is a good place to live and raise a family.
Most state residents, about two-thirds, worry about affording health insurance, according to the survey. That’s a 12 percentage point jump over the number who worried about that a year ago, and it is the highest percentage to say they worry about insurance costs since the survey began 18 months ago.
For various reasons, 42 percent of respondents said they were very likely or somewhat likely to move out of the state within the next five years, up from 32 percent who said that a year ago, the survey found.
More than half of those aged 18 to 25 said they likely will leave the state in the coming years, according to InformCT. In other age groups, less than half of respondents plan to leave, with residents ages 56 to 65 the least likely to emigrate.
InformCT is a public-private partnership that provides independent, nonpartisan research, analysis and public outreach and includes staff from the Connecticut Economic Resource Center Inc. (CERC) and the Connecticut Data Collaborative. Its quarterly survey is administered by researchers at CERC and Smith & Co. and polls residents throughout Connecticut.
Nearly half, 49 percent, of respondents said they do not think the state’s economy is improving, up from 40 percent who felt that way a year ago, the survey found. And one-third of respondents said jobs are “very hard to get” in the state, up from about one-quarter who felt that way a year ago.
Among those asked, people who lived in New London and Fairfield counties were most likely to believe business conditions were improving while those in Middlesex, Windham and Litchfield were most likely to feel they had worsened.
A growing number of Connecticut residents favor investing in schools and community features as the best ways to bolster the economy, as opposed to recruiting companies. The survey found 61 percent support investing in schools and communities, up from 52 percent a year ago.
Many people worry they won’t be able to afford to retire comfortably, a concern that has lingered for six straight quarters, according to the survey. Less than 25 percent expect to have enough money to retire, and 25 percent said they likely will refinance their mortgage or buy a new home in the coming months as a result.
There were some bright spots in the survey, including the fact that many consumers continue to spend even amid uncertainty. The survey found that, in the next six months, 41 percent of respondents expect to make a “major consumer expenditure,” 31 percent are likely to buy a car, and 71 percent plan to take an out-of-state vacation.
Also, residents are growing more optimistic about their own financial situations even though they worry about the economy. The survey found 32 percent feel they are better off now than they were six months ago, and 42 percent believe they will be better off six months from now than they currently are — both of those are 5 percentage points higher than a year ago.
The survey has a 4.4 percent margin of error. InformCT was not immediately able to say how many people were surveyed. As soon as that information is provided this report will be updated.