People never sit still these days: Whether it’s due to a new job, new romance, or desire for a change of scenery, Americans have acquired a serious case of homeownership wanderlust. Moving has become the new normal. Only where? Well, two new surveys by moving companies traced our migration patterns last year to pinpoint places settlers are flocking to—and fleeing—in droves.
So which state is the most popular destination? According to data from both United Van Lines and Atlas, Oregon tops the charts. United determined that this Northwestern state experienced a 69% influx of movers, and has ranked as the top state to move to for the past three years.
Anyone who’s ever watched “Portlandia” knows Portland is a hipster mecca overflowing with pour-over coffee, craft beers, and artisanal everything. But the statewide appeal for homeownership goes far beyond that (mostly true) stereotype.
According to a United press release quoting Michael Stoll, professor and chair of the Department of Public Policy at the University of California, Los Angeles, Oregon is the nexus of a triumvirate of attractive elements: tech jobs, green space, and cheap cost of living. The latter, however, is spiraling upward quickly as this area’s popularity grows.
“This year’s data reflects longer-term trends of people moving to the Pacific West, where cities such as Portland and Seattle are seeing the combination of a boom in the technology and creative marketing industry, as well as a growing ‘want’ for outdoor activity and green space,” Stoll explained.
Other states experiencing a heavy influx of settlers include Idaho, North Carolina, Alaska, and North Dakota. Meanwhile, states that are getting ditched left and right include Hawaii, New York, Illinois, South Dakota, and Wyoming.
Wanna see where your state stacks up on the popularity scale? Check out the full results below, with the top number representing outbound moves and the bottom number inbound.
Since January 1993, Atlas Van Lines has reviewed and released data on the origins and destinations of interstate (or between states) moves throughout the previous calendar year. The 2015 Migration Patterns study results provide a snapshot of relocation patterns. This year, 20 states, in addition to Washington D.C., registered as balanced, 18 states were outbound, and 12 states were inbound.
States with the highest percentage of inbound moves:
- Oregon (64%)
- Idaho (63%)
- North Carolina (61%)
- Alaska (60%)
- North Dakota (59%)
States with the highest percentage of outbound moves:
- Hawaii (62%)
- New York (61.8%)
- Illinois (61.7%)
- South Dakota (60%)
- Wyoming (59.5%)
In 2015, the total number of interstate and inter-province moves reached 77,705, up from 76,979 in 2014. In addition, regional trends show changes occurred in the Northeast, West and Canadian provinces, with the most significant changes taking place in the South and Midwest.
Other migration trends:
The Northeastern states saw three major changes from 2014 to 2015, with Maine and Rhode Island going from balanced to inbound and New Hampshire went from an inbound to balanced. The remainder of the states did not undergo any status change in 2015. New York and New Jersey have been outbound for more than 13 years.
The Southern region experienced four changes among three states and Washington, D.C., with Alabama going from balanced to inbound, and Louisiana shifting from balanced to outbound. Mississippi and Washington, D.C. both changed from inbound to balanced.
The Midwestern states experienced a major shift to outbound moves, with Wisconsin, Iowa and South Dakota going from balanced to outbound in 2015. Missouri, however, shifted from outbound to balanced. Similar to 2013 and 2014, North Dakota was the only state in the region to register as inbound.
The Western states experienced two changes in 2015, with Alaska going from balanced to inbound, and Hawaii shifting from balanced to outbound. Wyoming was the only other outbound state in the West region, with the majority of the Western states registered as balanced.
Seven of the 10 Canadian provinces remained outbound, including Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan. The three additional provinces, including Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, shifted from outbound to balanced in 2015.
For an infographic on the results, visit the 2015 Migration Patterns Infographic.