The Colorado Department of Public Affairs estimates that the population in
Colorado will grow to over 8 million by 2050. (Photo: Daria Shevtsova, Unsplash)
Duane Duggan, Realtor and Author, RE/MAX of Boulder
Duane Duggan, Realtor and Author, RE/MAX of Boulder

There is no question that population in Colorado is increasing. You can experience crowding on the roads when you’re commuting, and in even daily life when you visit the grocery store or go to restaurants. In fact, the Colorado Department of Public Affairs estimates that the population in Colorado will grow to over eight million by 2050. This is up from approximately 5 million in 2010. Currently, according to the U.S. Census Bureau in an article by the Denver Post, the Colorado population is approximately 5,695,564, nearly 700,000 higher than in 2010. This translates to 13.2 percent growth, the fourth highest in the nation during that time period.

As I took my 95-year-old mom to the airport the other day, we passed the Riverdale exit on I-470 where my Aunt Beth and Uncle Earl used to have a farm. Taking a look at the countryside filled with houses and golf courses, my mom said, “Wow, where are all the people coming from?” It struck me that this sentiment would be a good topic for this week’s article.

Colorado is the seventh-fastest growing state in the U.S. with 80,000 new residents, reports The Denver Post from U.S. Census Bureau statistics, and Colorado’s population grew by 1.4 percent between July 1, 2017, and July 1, 2018. The largest source of this growth is in migration from other parts of the country.

According to the Colorado State Demography Office, which released a migration summary in January 2015 based on 2013 data (see link at the end of this article), the top sending state for migrants to Colorado was California. If you see lots of California license plates on our roads or seem to regularly meet new people here from California, you now know why. The runner up sending state is Texas, y’all. Ranked number three is Florida. For some reason, I thought everyone was moving from snow country to sun country, but Florida indicates the opposite. Hitting number four on the list of top sending states is Illinois and rounding out the top five transfer states in is Arizona!

Now, let’s not forget about outflows of migration from Colorado to other states. Where do people move to when they pack up? The top state Coloradans leave for is Texas. The number two state they move to is California. (So, they loaded up their truck and moved to Beverly Hills. I think there was a TV show about that!) Coming is at number three is Arizona with all those sun worshipers escaping the snow. There must be a lot of those sun worshipers because the number four state Coloradans transfer to Florida. Finally, number five is Wyoming.  

Colorado State Demography Office migration summary (click on “IRS State to State Migration”):

Population articles from the Denver Post:

The Colorado State Demography Office has a wealth of information, but one of the most interesting graphics on its website I found was an active flow map of people moving to and from Colorado. The image below is a stationary view of the flow map. Check out this very cool moving map of migration flows at

By Duane Duggan, RE/MAX of Boulder. Duane  is an award-winning Realtor and author of the book, “Realtor for Life”. He has been a Realtor for RE/MAX of Boulder since 1982 and has facilitated over 2,500 transactions over his career. Living the life of a Realtor and being immersed in real estate led to the inception of his book, Realtor for Life. For questions, e-mail Duane at, call 303.441.5611 or visit