Michigan -> Florida Migration Cost State $1.4B in Taxable Income in 2021

While Michigan lost population to southern states, it gained from Illinois, California, and New York. IRS tax data also show that Michigan’s population loss slowed between 2019 and 2021.

East Lansing, MI–May 8, 2023: Anderson Economic Group recently examined the fiscal impact of migration to and from Michigan between 2018 and 2021. While the state continued to lose residents and income overall, net population lost to migration declined substantially from 2019 to 2021.

Findings: Net Migration

Florida was the most notable recipient of Michigan migration, netting 7,800 former tax-paying residents in 2020-2021 and denying Michigan’s coffers $1.4 billion in taxable income. Other states that gained 1,000 or more in population from the state during that period were also located in the south; specifically, Texas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina.

The map below shows Michigan’s net population gains in 2020-2021.

Map 1. Net Change in People Migrating Into/Out of Michigan, by State, 2020-2021

Findings: In-Migration and Out-Migration

Michigan’s gained population from some states, offsetting some of the losses. The state’s largest net population gains came from Illinois, New York, and California (see Map 1).

Maps 2 and 3 below show the total movement of tax-paying residents into and out of Michigan from other states in 2020-2021. Map 2 shows that Michigan saw substantial in-migration from Florida, Texas, Indiana, and Ohio. However, each of those states also gained population from Michigan (see Map 3).

Map 2: In-Migration to Michigan, 2020-2021
Indicating Gross Population Gain (number of people) and Gross Income Gain (adjusted gross income) from Top States

Map 3: Out-Migration from Michigan, 2020-2021
Indicating Gross Population Loss (number of people) and Gross Income Loss (adjusted gross income) to Top States from Michigan

Changes Over Time

Pre-pandemic (2018-2019) Michigan lost population to California, while during the pandemic (2019-20 and 2020-21), Michigan gained population from California.

The state routinely gains population from Illinois and New York, and the pandemic years were no exception. In 2020-2021, Michigan gained a net 3,600 people and $417.6 million in taxable income from Illinois, while $100.7 million in taxable income came from former New York residents.

Michigan’s Total Taxpaying Population Change (net) by Year, 2018-2021

Period Net Change in Michigan Population Due to Migration
2018-2019 -13,819
2019-2020 -6,730
2020-2021 -5,195



About the Authors

Research for this report was conducted by Patrick Anderson, AEG’s principal and CEO, and by Sara Bowers, consultant, who is AEG’s mapping and GIS expert.

Anderson Economic Group, LLC

Anderson Economic Group routinely produces meticulous studies that illuminate economic trends in Michigan and across the U.S. AEG’s practice areas include public policy and economic analysis, market and industry analysis, and strategy and business valuation.