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Here's why millennials love New Hampshire

New Hampshire is winning the battle among Northeast states to attract successful and upwardly mobile millennials — an indication that cities such as Manchester and Portsmouth offer the combination of lifestyle and economic opportunity that this prized demographic desires.

The southern New Hampshire region has become particularly attractive to members of the workforce between the ages of 20 and 34, according to economic development officials. Portsmouth, as an example, has consistently been ranked high for the quality of life, strong city services and public education, and the entrepreneurial spirit that exists in the city.

These dynamics are a no small coup for Granite State economic progress — as the general trend now for the millennial demographic is an overwhelming shift toward southern and western states and cities.

The key recent data in question first emerged in July from a study by SmartAsset — the third such analysis of millennial migration by the financial technology company.

New Hampshire was the only Northeast state to crack the SmartAsset Top 10 of States Where Millennials Are Moving — a list dominated by western states such as Washington, Colorado, Oregon and Arizona, as well as Georgia, North Carolina and others in the south.

Manchester helped push New Hampshire into the top millennial rankings as it was the only Northeast city named among the most popular cities for millennial migration.

But other New Hampshire communities as such Portsmouth, Dover, Hanover and Nashua are delivering the small-town lifestyle and manageable urban experience — against the backdrop of the state’s overall rural palette — that demographic experts observe are popular among millennials. It’s a good sign for the Granite State economy: Millennials will become the largest living adult generation by the end of 2019, and are expected to represent over $1.4 trillion annually in spending power by 2020.

Portsmouth, in particular, is a bright spot for New Hampshire and well positioned to attract more and more millennials as their economic influence enters a likely period of further growth.

The City of Portsmouth ranks #1 among the Best Places for Young Professionals in New Hampshire, according to Niche — an online resource that helps people identify ideal communities and neighborhoods for relocation and career advancement.

Indeed, the Niche rankings give Portsmouth an overall grade of “A,” an “A” for the quality of public schools — and an “A+” for being “Good for Young Professionals.” And the Niche reviews compiled on life in Portsmouth are overwhelmingly strong.

Additionally, named Portsmouth in 2017 one of the Top 100 Best Places to Live and also one of the Best Cities for Entrepreneurs

The type of companies that Portsmouth is attracting are also a strong sign of the city’s appeal to millennials and the wisdom of current leadership in targeting such economic growth. The millennial-heavy marketing giant Hubspot — as one significant example — continues to grow in Portsmouth.

That growth is strong enough that the company will be anchoring the dynamic redevelopment of a key downtown Portsmouth site.

The nation’s eyes and political awareness will soon be focused on New Hampshire as the first-in-the-U.S. NH Primary cycle gears up to full speed. It’s a good opportunity for the state — as well as city and community leaders in places like Portsmouth, Manchester and Nashua — to showcase how their leadership, policy decisions, economic development initiatives and commitment to being livable have positioned the Granite State as the gem for millennials in a Northeast region that otherwise has not attracted millennial migration.

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