19 Most Popular Cities in the US Where Gen Z Is Moving To

Born between 1997 and 2012, Gen Z is starting to head out and find their homes across the U.S. Seeking out exciting job opportunities, rich cultural experiences, and stunning natural scenery, this list features the top 19 cities the generation is loving, from Houston to Chicago, Seattle, and more.

New York City, New York

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An economic powerhouse and cultural hub for generations, Gen Z is no different in its love for New York. According to Fortune, the generation flocking to NYC has seen historically low vacancies in rentals, reaching just 1.4%, their lowest since 1968. From Broadway to world-class museums and a diverse range of cultures, New York offers young professionals an unparalleled urban living experience.

Los Angeles, California

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The global hub of the entertainment industry is providing hopeful new talent with potential careers in the film, television, and music industries. Beyond the showbiz, LA’s year-round sunny climate and access to beautiful natural scenery are proving to be a draw for Gen Z.

Chicago, Illinois

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A hub for the finance, tech, and manufacturing sectors, Chicago has a growing job market with lots of opportunities for newly qualified graduates. The city also offers a vibrant arts scene, renowned culinary culture, and impressive architecture for a cultural experience like no other.

Houston, Texas

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According to Fox4 News, a study found that Texas welcomed 345,000 Gen Z adults in 2023, the highest of all the states. The city, which is currently an energy sector leader, is expanding healthcare and tech opportunities. With no state income tax, Houston offers affordable living compared to other major U.S. cities.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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Rich in American history and boasting numerous educational and cultural institutions, Philadelphia is seeing a rise in Gen Z making the city their home. The city benefits from a growing tech scene, as well as strong education and healthcare sectors.

Providence, Rhode Island

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An emerging tech hub and supported by academic institutions such as Brown University, this compact city offers residents affordability and quality of life. Completely walkable, Providence has a vibrant arts scene and historical architecture, which is helping to attract Gen Z to the New England city.

Charlotte, North Carolina

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According to the Financial Times, North Carolina ranked 4th in the top states for Gen Z movers in 2022. With its warm climate and proximity to both mountains and the coast, the city of Charlotte is proving a popular spot. It has a rapidly growing finance and tech sector as well as a vibrant, community-focused cultural scene.

Boulder, Colorado

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With its strong outdoor culture and easy access to recreational activities such as hiking, biking, and skiing, Boulder is seeing an influx of Gen Z adults moving to the city. It has a growing startup tech sector and a highly educated population, as well as a big focus on sustainability and healthy living.

Seattle, Washington

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Home to Amazon and Microsoft, this tech hub offers numerous career opportunities and is seeing Gen Z relocate to the city. It has great access to outdoor activities and, as a result, a strong focus on environmental sustainability.

Worcester, Massachusetts

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Supported by a strong academic presence, this city is seeing emerging healthcare and biotech sectors. It offers residents an affordable alternative to Boston, with a growing arts and cultural scene. It also benefits from historical New England charm alongside modern urban development.

Ann Arbor, Michigan

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According to CNBC, Gen Z “have flooded Ann Arbor, Michigan, the U.S. city that saw its Gen Z population grow the fastest in 2022.” Dominated by the University of Michigan, the city has a vibrant college town atmosphere and benefits from a strong healthcare and tech job market. It also offers rich cultural offerings, including museums, galleries, and music.

Provo, Utah

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With a significant presence of tech companies and startups, Provo is often referred to as the ‘Silicon Slopes.’ It has great access to outdoor activities, with nearby mountains and national parks, as well as a strong sense of community.

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C.
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A center of politics, Washington offers unique job opportunities within government, nonprofit, and international organizations. Its diverse neighborhoods and strong history have created a rich culture, including a vibrant food scene. Residents also benefit from the countless museums, monuments, and cultural institutions.

Columbia, South Carolina

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A growing economic hub with opportunities in the manufacturing, healthcare, and education sectors, Columbia offers an affordable cost of living, which is proving attractive to Gen Z. Boasting a warm climate, rich history, and cultural heritage, the city is a fantastic location for young professionals and families alike.

Boston, Massachusetts

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In a report by Statista, Boston ranked as the 3rd most popular U.S. city with Gen Z in 2021. The city is an innovation and educational hub, with institutions such as Harvard and MIT driving research in the area. This is supporting a strong job market, particularly in tech, finance, and healthcare.

Austin, Texas

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With a thriving tech sector and a vibrant startup scene, Austin is often referred to as the ‘Silicon Hills.’ Beyond work, the city is renowned for a lively music scene and cultural festivals. It also has a strong focus on an outdoor lifestyle as well as sustainability and community.

Denver, Colorado

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Denver is seeing an influx of Gen Z relocating to the city, partially due to its booming job market in the aerospace, tech, and renewable energy sectors. The city is a paradise for outdoors enthusiasts with easy access to the Rockies for skiing, hiking, and biking, helping to create a strong focus on healthy living.

San Francisco, California

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A global tech hub and home to Silicon Valley startups and tech giants, San Francisco is proving popular with Gen Z, helped by its commitment to innovation, sustainability, and progressive values. The city also benefits from a diverse culture and iconic landmarks.

Atlanta, Georgia

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Atlanta, a growing hub for the film and TV industries, also benefits from strong healthcare and tech sectors, offering residents a diverse range of career opportunities. It’s rich in cultural history and has a fantastic music and arts scene. It is also seeing a boom in cultural cuisine, from traditional Southern cooking to international influence.

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