Housing

This Is the State People Are Moving To

Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images

There was a great migration from early in the COVID-19 pandemic throughout 2021 into 2022. People moved from expensive coastal states to places inland like Arizona and Florida. Housing was less expensive in these states, and some people liked the lifestyles and weather better than in places such as California and New York. (These cities attracted the most new residents last year.)

The migration was slowed by higher mortgage rates, which have cooled the rate at which people could buy new homes, but the move has not ended. According to a new study about net migration by moving service provider Hire A Helper, Oklahoma’s population gain (the number of people who moved into the state versus those who left) was the highest last year. The data for “The Top 10 States and Cities of 2023: 2023-24 HireAHelper Migration Report” came from 75,000 “moves book” and Census Bureau data.

The net population gain in Oklahoma was about 40%. The next two states based on net gains were South Carolina and Tennessee, each near 35%.

Since many people relocated to the South, it makes sense that the net gains were about 30% in North Carolina, more than 26% in Kentucky and almost 20% in Alabama.

Oklahoma does not show up on other analyses of population movement, like those from Northern Van Lines or the Census Bureau. However, the states with better affordability tend to be in the Deep South.

These are the 10 states people are migrating to most:

  • Oklahoma (40.0%)
  • South Carolina (35.0%)
  • Tennessee (34.6%)
  • North Carolina (30.2%)
  • District of Columbia (29.5%)
  • Kentucky (26.4%)
  • Alabama (19.6%)
  • Wisconsin (19.4%)
  • Michigan (17.7%)
  • Florida (11.4%)

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