Reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan


Manhattan, while attractive, may feel too much for certain residents. The expensive cost of housing in cities frequently motivates individuals to explore cheaper housing alternatives in suburban areas. Moreover, the continuous noise and traffic congestion, worsened by the heavy flow of vehicles and busy streets, can be tiresome for people looking for a more peaceful way of living. Many people also mention the need for extra room, as the small living spaces in Manhattan can feel restricting. In this case, a storage facility NYC locals use can be a suitable solution for those who stay or leave Manhattan. Commute times and the daily hustle can lead to burnout. Additionally, families frequently move in order to find improved school districts and neighborhoods The need for a closer connection to nature and a desire for a stronger sense of community are also common reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan.

High cost of living

The expensive living expenses in Manhattan, especially the sky-high housing costs, are a major reason why people are choosing to move away. Recent data shows that the median sales price for homes in Manhattan exceeds $1.6 million, making it unaffordable for numerous middle-class families and individuals. Rental costs are just as intimidating, with the typical one-bedroom apartment monthly rent averaging at $3,500. For a lot of people, the financial burden of these costs is just too much to handle. Consequently, people and households are looking for cheaper housing alternatives in suburban areas, offering bigger homes for less money. This financial burden has also led many to seek Manhattan storage NYC residents rent to store their belongings as they downsize or transition to a new living situation. Surrounding areas like Brooklyn, Queens, and even New Jersey are becoming attractive alternatives.

A worried woman holding her head.
High costs of living are giving headaches and are also one of the main reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan

The impact of city and state taxes is one of the reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan

Excessive city and state taxes are causing residents to leave Manhattan. Citizens in this area are confronted with some of the greatest tax rates nationwide. The income tax rate in New York State can go up to 8.82%, with an additional 3.876% for the city’s income tax. High property taxes worsen the issue. The typical property tax bill in Manhattan amounts to $8,980. In addition to taxes, housing expenses are extremely expensive. Many find it difficult to sustain such financial burdens. These costs force residents to consider moving to less expensive areas. They seek relief in states with lower tax rates and more affordable housing.

The desire for more space

Residing in a compact apartment presents difficulties, particularly for families. An average studio apartment in Manhattan has a size of roughly 500 square feet. On the other hand, residences in locations such as Westchester or Long Island provide a significantly larger amount of space. For instance, a residence in Scarsdale could contain 3,000 square feet, which includes a backyard. In Manhattan, numerous individuals face difficulties in storing their possessions. Thus, storage companies that pick up help manage this issue by taking items to offsite locations. These services become essential due to limited closet space. Residents often look at homes in New Jersey, where properties in towns like Montclair provide spacious living environments. A four-bedroom house there can easily offer over 2,500 square feet. Furthermore, those seeking even more space often look to suburban areas like Westchester County or Fairfield County.

A woman sitting on a black chair and reading why people decide to leave Manhattan
Look for places other than Manhattan that have more spacious home options.

The appeal of outdoor space and parks is another reason why people decide to leave Manhattan

A large number of Manhattan inhabitants cannot resist the beauty of outdoor areas and parks located away from the city. In Westchester, the Rockefeller State Park Preserve has 1,600 acres of picturesque trails, for instance. This extensive park is in stark contrast to the scarce greenery found in Manhattan. The South Mountain Reservation in New Jersey spans over 2,000 acres and provides chances for hiking, fishing, and picnicking. Expansive parks provide a peaceful escape from the crowded city environment. Individuals residing in these regions have the chance to engage in hobbies like biking and bird-watching in the surrounding natural surroundings. The closeness of these parks to suburban residences enhances their attractiveness. Homes in towns like Tarrytown and Montclair often have large yards, allowing for private outdoor activities. These areas provide a strong sense of community, with local parks hosting events and gatherings.

Lifestyle changes are crucial for leaving Manhattan

Leaving Manhattan often means a significant lifestyle change. The hectic, stressful atmosphere of the city can feel too much to handle. Continuous noise, busy streets, and the need to cope with the expensive living expenses all add to everyday stress. Many seek a quieter, more relaxed life in places like Chelsea. In this context, finding storage Chelsea locals rely on to manage belongings during the move becomes crucial. Moving to Chelsea offers a slower pace and a stronger sense of community. People find more time for leisure activities and personal interests. The area has excellent schools, making it attractive for families. Local shops and markets provide a different shopping experience compared to Manhattan’s busy stores. Homes are larger, with more outdoor space for gardening or relaxing. The overall atmosphere in Chelsea encourages a balanced lifestyle, away from the constant rush of the city.

A man in an orange sweater covering his ears as noise is one of the reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan.
Pollution and noise are two main reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan

Pollution and noise are significant factors in relocating from Manhattan

Noise and pollution in Manhattan push many residents to leave. Constant traffic, sirens, and construction create a relentless din. Average noise levels in the city can reach 70 decibels, comparable to a busy freeway. This disrupts sleep and increases stress. Air pollution contributes to the sense of discomfort. Air quality in Manhattan frequently does not meet national standards due to elevated levels of particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide. These substances lead to breathing problems and allergic reactions. Many opt to move to peaceful neighborhoods such as Chelsea in search of solace. Chelsea provides a substantial decrease in noise levels and improved air quality. The streets are more peaceful and the air is fresher, enhancing the experience of leisurely outdoor activities. Parks and green areas in Chelsea play a role in promoting a healthier environment. The contrast with Manhattan’s constant noise and pollution is stark.

Family considerations explain why people decide to leave Manhattan

Raising children in Manhattan presents many challenges. Space is a major issue, with small apartments offering limited room for play and growth. High living expenses increase the difficulty of finding inexpensive housing suitable for families. Schools have the potential to be both competitive and filled with too many students. Numerous parents encounter lengthy waiting lists for good public schools and costly fees for private ones. Safety is also a worry, as heavy traffic and few outdoor areas for children to play safely are issues. Children’s health and well-being can also be impacted by the levels of noise and pollution. Access to natural environments is limited, with Central Park frequently being the sole option for experiencing greenery. Moving to the suburbs can help address these problems. Suburban areas provide spacious residences, superior educational facilities, and more secure communities. Outdoor activities are more accessible, providing a healthier environment for children to grow.

An elderly man leaning on his knees.
It is not easy for senior citizens to keep up the pace of living in Manhattan.

Elderly people also find it difficult to reside in Manhattan

Elder care in the city comes with significant difficulties. High costs are a major barrier, as residential and in-home care services are more expensive in urban areas like Manhattan. Apartments and public spaces often lack necessary accessibility features, posing daily challenges for mobility. The busy streets are not ideal for older adults who might face mobility and health issues. Navigating public transportation can be daunting due to overcrowding and fast pace. However, the West Village offers some suitable amenities for elder care. The neighborhood has quieter streets and is more walkable than the busier parts of the city. There are numerous small parks and sitting areas for leisure. Health services are accessible, with several clinics and specialty stores that cater to older adults. Also, the storage West Village professionals offer help manage belongings, aiding in downsizing efforts. Additionally, the community centers in West Village often host events and activities geared toward seniors.

Work-related reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan

Remote work has completely transformed the lives of many people by allowing them to move away from urban areas and settle in places they find more appealing, such as the Lower East Side. The versatility of working remotely allows professionals to avoid the expensive living expenses and hectic pace of city life while continuing to advance in their careers. Consequently, numerous individuals are opting to relocate to areas such as the Lower East Side, valuing its distinct appeal and relatively cheaper housing choices in contrast to Manhattan. This shift often involves downsizing and managing belongings, which is where storage Lower East Side locals utilize comes in handy, providing a convenient solution for individuals transitioning to a new living arrangement. The Lower East Side’s proximity to various amenities, parks, and cultural attractions makes it an attractive location for those seeking a better work-life balance without sacrificing career opportunities.

Job opportunities in Manhattan compared with other areas

Job opportunities in Manhattan are vast compared to other areas like Hell’s Kitchen. Manhattan is home to many sectors such as finance, technology, and media. Big companies such as Goldman Sachs, Google, and The New York Times have their headquarters in this location. These companies provide a variety of well-paid positions and draw in skilled individuals from around the globe. On the other hand, although still within Manhattan, Hell’s Kitchen has a distinct focus in terms of job opportunities. This area is known for its entertainment and hospitality industries. Broadway theaters, restaurants, and television studios are prominent employers in Hell’s Kitchen. Companies like CBS and various production studios provide significant employment opportunities. The neighborhood suits the needs of residents and businesses and storage Hell’s Kitchen experts provide helps manage space constraints. Transitioning from Manhattan’s corporate offices to Hell’s Kitchen’s creative scene reflects the area’s diverse employment landscape.

An old brown building behind trees
New Jersey is one of the favorite relocation destinations for ex-Manhattans.

Common destinations after leaving Manhattan

Following their departure from Manhattan, numerous individuals relocate to in-demand suburban regions such as Westchester, Long Island, and New Jersey. Westchester provides municipalities such as Scarsdale and White Plains, renowned for their top-tier schools and roomy residences. These regions offer a more peaceful, child-friendly atmosphere in contrast to urban areas. Towns such as Huntington and Great Neck in Long Island are popular among those looking for coastal living, offering beach access and spacious properties. The Long Island Rail Road provides an easy way to commute to Manhattan for work. New Jersey offers appealing choices like Montclair and Hoboken, which mix suburban appeal with convenient transportation to New York City through PATH trains or ferries. Each of these locations offers increased space, reduced living expenses, and a more relaxed lifestyle.

Other major cities to relocate to after leaving Manhattan

In addition to Manhattan, a lot of individuals contemplate moving to big cities such as Los Angeles, Miami, and Chicago. Los Angeles is a popular destination for people in media and film due to its pleasant weather, variety of neighborhoods, and thriving entertainment industry. The city’s expansive design offers ample room and suburban choices, like Santa Monica and Pasadena. Miami is a popular destination for people looking for sunny weather and lively nightlife. Renowned for its beaches and rich cultural mix, it attracts professionals in both the tourism and finance industries. Brickell and Coral Gables are sought-after neighborhoods for newcomers. With a blend of city and suburban lifestyles, Chicago provides a diverse mix of architectural heritage and strong employment opportunities. Areas such as Lincoln Park and Evanston offer family-friendly atmospheres with quality schools and parks.

The Hollywood hill one can move to after finding the reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan.
Los Angeles is a very popular destination.

The appeal of smaller cities and towns is the reason why people decide to leave Manhattan

Smaller cities and towns have a distinct appeal for those leaving major urban centers. Places like Asheville, North Carolina, attract people with their scenic beauty and famous art scene. This town offers a relaxed lifestyle and a lower cost of living. Burlington, Vermont, is another attractive option, known for its strong sense of community and outdoor activities like hiking and skiing. College towns like Ann Arbor, Michigan, provide cultural amenities and a lively atmosphere due to the presence of the University of Michigan. Smaller towns such as Ithaca, New York, and Boulder, Colorado, also offer a mix of natural beauty and educational resources, appealing to families and academics alike. These areas typically have less traffic, lower crime rates, and more space compared to big cities.

There are other appealing home locations

High costs, noise, and pollution are key reasons why people decide to leave Manhattan. They are looking for additional space, improved air quality, and quieter surroundings for their loved ones. Suburban areas such as Westchester, Long Island, and New Jersey provide spacious homes and abundant greenery. Many can move to new locations without sacrificing job prospects due to the transition to working from home. Lesser populated areas like Asheville and Burlington offer a tranquil way of life with close-knit community connections. Every location provides its own advantages to suit various needs and preferences, making them appealing options to Manhattan’s fast pace. Many people are motivated by the wish for a well-rounded, healthier way of living to search for a new residence that fits their lifestyle more effectively.


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