Washington state officially tops 8 million residents in 2024

Washington state has officially reached a significant milestone, with its population now exceeding 8 million residents. The Office of Financial Management (OFM) reports that the state added approximately 84,550 new residents over the past year, bringing the total population to 8,035,700.

While this represents continued growth for Washington, the rate of increase has slowed compared to previous years. The annual average growth between 2010 and 2020 was over 98,000 residents, whereas this year saw just over 84,000 new inhabitants. Nevertheless, the state’s population has expanded by 329,400 people, or 4.3%, within the last decade.

The five largest metropolitan counties accounted for 68% of the state’s recent population growth. King County led the way, adding 19,700 new housing units and representing 38% of Washington’s housing growth over the past year. In total, the state added 51,300 new housing units.

Seattle, the state’s largest city, saw its population increase by 18,500, bringing the city’s total to 797,700. The OFM attributes this growth primarily to an expansion in housing availability.

Interestingly, the OFM notes a statewide decrease in births since 2017, mainly due to declining fertility rates among women in their teens and early 20s. This trend has not been offset by increased fertility rates among mothers over 35.

As Washington continues to grow, these population shifts will likely impact various aspects of life in the state, from urban development to public services and infrastructure planning.

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