Just 1 in 3 New Jerseyans plan to stay put for retirement


New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. (Eduardo Munoz/Reuters)

Just one in three New Jersey residents say they plan on staying there once they retire, according to a new poll.

More than half — 52 percent — say they plan to move away, while 32 percent say they’ll stick around in the state after they retire. Fourteen percent didn’t know what they’d do, according to Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind survey of nearly 700 non-retirees.

“Future retirees are obviously looking for places where they can stretch their dollars, and New Jersey isn’t looking too affordable these days,” Krista Jenkins, director of PublicMind and professor of political science at the university, said in a news release.

Among those who said they wouldn’t stay in the Garden State for their golden years, 57 percent cited affordability and high taxes as the reason. Fifteen percent said they hope to move somewhere warmer, 21 percent didn’t know their plans, 6 percent planned to move closer to relatives, and 1 percent cited health reasons. Two in five plan to move to a southern state, while one in five doesn’t know where he or she would go.

Having more time to plan for retirement didn’t seem to make a difference. Roughly the same share of respondents under 40 said they planned to leave. The desire to leave was pretty consistent no matter how long a person had resided in the state, though a larger share of longtime residents — those who had lived there 20 or more years — planned to stay. (There were fewer in that group who reported not knowing their plans.)

The results shouldn’t be too shocking. New Jersey was one of a handful of states where more than two in five respondents said they’d leave if they could, according to a recent Gallup survey. It was tied for sixth place with New York and Massachusetts.

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Niraj Chokshi · June 9, 2014

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