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Posted: May 15, 2015

Your hometown might be why you’re still single

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By Cox Media Group National Content Desk

A new study by Harvard University, and crunched by the New York Time’s Upshot blog, says it’s your hometown – not your income, your looks or other factors – that might be the determining factor for whether you’ll be married by age 26.

And if you think the South is the region that drives more adults into marriage, you’d be wrong about that.

Researchers determined that growing up in the rural Midwest – especially the Mormon areas of Utah – makes you about 10 percentage points more likely to get married than the rest of the country.

Perhaps not surprisingly, people who spent their childhoods in blue states and bigger cities tended to marry less.

In the list of the Top 30 counties in the U.S. with rates of marriage that are lowest, seven New York counties appear. In other words, adults who moved as children to a county in New York had a lower rate of marriage than most of the rest of the country.

Researchers refer to this as the New York Effect.

The study examined housing and tax data of 5 million people who moved as children in the 1980s and 1990s.

In the study, the children who were less likely to be married at 26 also appear less likely to be married at 30 and less likely to be married at any point.

Here are the Top-10 counties that are least likely to inspire you to get married:

1. Washington DC

2. Bronx County, New York

3. New York County (Manhattan)

4. Nassau County, New York

5. Orleans Parrish, Louisiana

6. Marin County, Calif.

7. Suffolk County, New York

8. Camden County, New Jersey

9. Essex County, New Jersey

10. San Francisco, Calif.

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