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- Californians who move to Seattle and Portland are facing backlash from locals, reports SF Gate.
- Residents are seemingly threatened by a “Californiacation” of the Pacific Northwest, in which home prices surge and traffic worsens, among other things.
- Some transplants reported seeing “F- California” or “California sucks” graffiti, while others have been verbally derided by locals.
A growing number of Californians are leaving the Golden State behind in search of cheaper living in Washington and Oregon – and locals aren’t very happy about it.
A recent story from SF Gate highlighted how some Bay Area expats who relocated to Seattle, Portland, and Boise, Idaho, are experiencing unwelcoming gestures from locals.
“Bay Area expats we talked to say they’ve faced a range of backlash, from harmless jokes to threats of violence. One couple who transplanted to Portland in 2017 found their car and home spray-painted with messages like ‘Go back to California,'” wrote SF Gate reporter Alix Martichoux.
A June survey from the Bay Area Council advocacy group found that 46% of residents say they plan to move away soon, up from 40% last year and 35% in 2016, reported Business Insider’s Leanna Garfield. Home prices are a huge factor.
Nearly 60% of Bay Area tech workers surveyed from companies like Google, Facebook, Apple, and Salesforce said they cannot afford to purchase a house there, reported Business Insider’s Melia Robinson. That’s not to say they’re leaving their jobs – more and more companies are increasingly offering remote work options.
Seattle and Portland are the top two destinations for Bay Area transplants, according to data from LinkedIn.
“If you think of all these cities and just think, literally, ‘What is the closest substitute to the Bay Area at a slightly lower cost?’ Seattle tops the list,” Guy Berger, an economist who works at LinkedIn, previously told Robinson.
Some California transplants told SF Gate that locals are seemingly threatened by a “Californiacation” of the Pacific Northwest. Many claim California expats are bringing more traffic (and thus more air pollution) and driving up home prices, among other things.
A Boise native who lived in the Bay Area for 10 years recently moved back to Idaho and said locals yelled “They’re coming! They’re gonna buy it!” at her while she was viewing an “overpriced open house,” reported SF Gate.
“We were in our car and we still have our California plates. They’re happy to be more aggressive when you have California plates. We really need to get rid of these plates,” she told SF Gate.
A 25-year-old Bay Area native who relocated to Vancouver, Washington, last year told SF Gate that while the people are “very nice and won’t say anything directly to our faces,” her and her husband have seen “F- California” and “California sucks” graffiti around town.
Though it may seem a bad trade-off to some, home prices in Seattle and Portland are a steal compared to the Bay Area, where the median home price has cracked $1 million and it’s officially a better long-term deal to rent than become a homeowner.
A man who left Los Angeles, another overpriced California city, for Portland 40 years ago told SF Gate he’s observed the impact of new residents to the city and it’s eroding the character of the area: “Portland is becoming all I didn’t like about LA.”