Ridgefield resident Brett Malone closed on his new house on Dec. 1. That new house is located in Texas.
Malone, an insurance agent licensed to sell insurance through New York Life Insurance, says he and his wife are moving to seek greater opportunity and lower taxes.
Although a similarly valued house will have a slightly higher property tax bill, Malone says that he and his wife will save more than $10,000 per year in income taxes.
Malone says the growing population of Texas is one of the big reasons he is moving. “Major corporations are moving large businesses to that state and it’s expanding and growing,” he said. “Why not move a business to that state versus a state that is constantly seeing people move out of it?”
Connecticut has been experiencing a net loss of population for several years in a row, while some states like South Carolina, Florida and Texas continue to gain residents from other states. Texas has been siphoning off businesses from California, like Carl’s Jr. and Toyota, and is consistently ranked as a top state for business.
United Van Lines' 2016 annual movers survey found Connecticut one of the top three states with people leaving, just behind New Jersey and New York.
Of those leaving Connecticut, 45 percent did so for job-related issues and 21 percent for retirement, according the Van Lines survey.
Malone points to Connecticut’s taxes and fees as part of the reason he wants to leave. “We’re fee'ed to death in this state. It’s a back-handed tax in my book.”
A 2015 study found that Connecticut had over 360 different kinds of taxes and fees, most of which generated hardly any revenue for the state.
But his primary concern is the economic climate of Connecticut. He believes that many businesses can't afford to move out of state and are stuck trying to get through the difficult times, hoping Connecticut’s economy will turn around. “More people want to leave than can leave.”
But Malone says he is done waiting for Connecticut to change and is moving to seek greater growth opportunity in the Lone Star state. Even though being far away from New York City will most-likely “hurt” his business in the short-run, he is hopeful for the future.
“With the amount of people moving into the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, I think in the long run it will be worth it.”