Colorado continues to be a favorite place to call home for the millennial generation, scoring the No. 10 position in the 2022 WalletHub analysis of the mid-20 to early-40 year olds.
With a population of around 80 million, millennials surpassed baby boomers in 2019 and are now the nation’s largest generation. Millennials control more than 21% of consumer discretionary spending in the U.S. and hold trillions of dollars in purchasing power as well as higher educational attainment, according to WalletHub.
Even so “they are economically worse off than their parents,” writes WalletHub, citing the financial crisis as a big factor. “Millennials have come of age and entered the workforce in the shadow of the Great Recession, which has significantly reduced their job prospects and earning potential for decades to come. Plus, many millennials are struggling due to financial difficulties from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
To determine where this generation both thrives and struggles, the analysis compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 34 key metrics and ranked locations based on affordability, education and health, quality of life, economic health and civic engagement. The study defined millennials as those born between 1981 and 1996.
In addition to its No. 10 overall placement, Colorado has the third highest percentage of millennials, surpassing Washington and California in the fourth and fifth spot, but trailing the District of Columbia and Alaska in first and second. The lowest percentage of millennials are found in Maine, West Virginia and Vermont.
On the flip side, Colorado has the 49th highest housing cost, lower than only California and Hawaii. Leading with the nation’s lowest housing costs are Iowa, Missouri and Ohio, reports WalletHub.
Overall, Colorado scored as follows on a scale from 1-50, with one being best and 50 being worst:
• Affordability: 49
• Education and health: 23
• Quality of life: 5
• Economic health: 10
• Civic Engagement: 9
The company explored how the COVID-19 pandemic and work from home policies impacted the career development and job security of millennial workers. According to Linda Fisher Thornton, adjunct associate professor at the University of Richmond School of Professional and Continuing Studies, “Job hunting used to be focused within a reasonable commute radius from a job seeker’s home base. Over time more and more jobs have become virtual and the pandemic has opened additional global virtual work opportunities for job seekers of all ages and stages of life.”
Many experts believe the expanded ability to live further from work resulted in a population shift from densely packed cities to more suburban and rural locations.
Here’s the list of the top 10 states for millennials:
2) District of Columbia
For more on the WalletHub study visit https://wallethub.com/edu/best-states-for-millennials/33371
By Tom Kalinski. Tom is the broker/owner of RE/MAX of Boulder, the local residential real estate company he established in 1977. He was inducted into Boulder County’s Business Hall of Fame in 2016 and has a 40-year background in commercial and residential real estate. For questions, email Tom at [email protected], call 303.441.5620, or visit boulderco.com.