Where are Americans moving to?by Marcie Geffner
But in fact, those nine states, plus the District of Columbia, were the top 10 U.S. destinations people moved to last year, according to an annual study released by United Van Lines, a moving van company headquartered in St. Louis.
The study tracks the states the company’s customers move to and from during the course of the year. The company has been tracking moves for almost 40 years, according to Carl Walter, vice president of United Van Lines.
Attractive moving destinations
Oregon topped the 2013 list after four straight prior years in the number two spot.
South Carolina has held a spot 16 out of the past 18 years, and North Carolina has been on the list every year since 1993.
Nevada remained on the list for the third consecutive year in 2013.
The District of Columbia dropped to the number five position after five consecutive years as the top move-in destination.
South Dakota, Texas and Colorado were new additions to the list in 2013.
Business incentives, industrial growth and relatively lower costs of living attracted jobs and people to such states as South Dakota, Colorado and Texas, Michael Stoll, economist, professor and chair of the Department of Public Policy at the University of California, Los Angeles, said in a United Van Lines statement.
“We’re also seeing continued migration to the Pacific Northwest as young professionals and retirees are drawn to amenities including public transit, green space and the local arts and entertainment scene,” Stoll said.
States that lost people
Ten other states had the dubious distinction of being the top places people moved out of in 2013. On the list:
- New Jersey
- New York
- West Virginia
- New Mexico
New Jersey claimed the top spot three of the past four years while Illinois held steady at number two after falling from the top spot in 2011.
Michigan dropped off in 2013 after 16 consecutive years at or near the top of the list.
Michigan has a higher-than-average unemployment rate, but home sales and prices are up, showing an increased demand for housing, Stoll said.
“The state’s per capita income is up, and automakers in Detroit have rebounded and are hiring,” he added.
United Van Lines classifies a state as “high inbound” if 55 percent or more of the moves went into the state and “high outbound” if 55 percent or more of the moves came out of the state.
(The next study is due out in January 2015.)