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Here’s why residents are fleeing NSW

Could the premier state be dethroned?

Senior Digital Journalist, Your Money

It seems that Australia’s most populous state is shrinking as residents flee to other parts of the country in search of a more affordable cost of living.

According to recent ABS figures, New South Wales lost more than 22,000 people over the year to September 2018, the biggest net loss since the 2008 GFC.

With most people moving to Victoria and Queensland, NSW could soon be usurped as the country’s largest state, according to property market analyst Kevin Brogan of CoreLogic.

“Melbourne last year passed the 5 million mark in terms of migration. It’s also the largest recipient of overseas migration as well,” Brogan told Auction Day.

He said that although the NSW economy remains strong, the higher cost of living is taking a toll on some residents in search of better opportunities elsewhere.

“Housing affordability in Queensland and Victoria is better than NSW,” Brogan explained.

Job opportunities and low housing affordability in Sydney have been two of the biggest drivers of people out of NSW, Brogan said.

But it’s not all bad news for the state.

The figures show that despite the net loss, 96,000 arrived to NSW from other states during that time and overseas immigration remains a strong population driver.

The biggest sources of arrivals to NSW over the year were QLD (36,730), VIC (25,876) and ACT (11,728), with arrivals from VIC and ACT at their highest levels in three decades.

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