ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A new study has revealed that Illinois lost more of its population than any other state in the last six months.

According to a study by Clever Real Estate and Allied Van Lines, Illinois had more outbound moves than any other state, with respondents to the study saying they wanted to live somewhere with a lower crime rate (46%), affordable homes (42%) and a lower cost of living (41%).

“It makes sense when we analyze the data. Illinois in the past few years passed a really big tax increase so people said they are moving because of that and there is a slightly higher than average violent crime rate,” said Jaime Seale, author of the study. 

Chicago had the most outbound moves than any other city, the study showed.

A prior report from Wirepoints showed that since 2019, Illinois has lost 70,000 jobs, ranking 10th worst in the country for job growth.

The last U.S. Census showed that 110,127 people left the state between July 2021 and July 2022.

Illinois lost a congressional seat due to the population decline, with 17 representatives, down from 18.

IRS data shows 105,000 residents moved out of state in 2020, taking with them $10.6 billion in income. In 2021, Gov. JB Pritzker blamed the out-migration on a lack of affordable colleges.

Major employers such as Stellantis, Caterpillar, Boeing, Tyson, Guggenheim Investments, and Citadel have left the state, some citing high crime and taxes.

During the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, this year, Pritzker denied those claims, saying the state is attracting businesses like Kellogg to Chicago.

Pritzker has maintained that the US Census vastly undercounted the state’s population. “We did a census in 2020, it turns out all the American Community Survey data was wrong. We gained population in the state of Illinois.”

According to the US Census Bureau, Illinois has lost residents for the last nine years, and data from moving companies like U-Haul tell the same story.

The state has also been grappling with a perception of lawlessness when it comes to a rapid rise in retail crimesshootings, and car thefts.

The National Insurance Crime Bureau reported that Illinois had a higher increase in car thefts than any other state in 2022.

“Smash and grab” retail theft has also become an issue for businesses seeking to operate in Illinois.

Since 2019, a CBS News report found that about 3,300 Chicago Police officers retired, resigned, or were fired, and only 1,600 were hired. Officers cited exhaustion and lack of support from public officials as their reasons for quitting.