NEW YORK (The Center Square / OnSachem.com / OnTownMedia.com) — New York residents are moving out, earning the Empire State the number-two spot for outbound migration, according to a new study. COVID-19 is among the reasons cited for seeking a new state to call home.
In its 44th Annual National Migration Study, United Van Lines found that migration to Western and Southern states from Northern states has been a prevalent pattern for the past several years.
According to the study, which tracks the company’s exclusive data for customers’ 2020 state-to-state migration patterns, the greatest percentage of people moved to Idaho, with an inbound migration of 70 percent.
The greatest percentage of people left New Jersey, with an outbound migration of 70 percent. New Jersey has held the top outbound spot for the past three years.
States with the top inbound migration rates last year, following Idaho, were South Carolina (64%), Oregon (63%), South Dakota (62%) and Arizona (62%).
States with the top outbound migration, following New Jersey, were New York (67%), Illinois (67%), Connecticut (63%) and California (59%).
United Van Lines conducts a survey examining the reasons why their clients moved to different states. In 2020, it found that 40 percent moved for a new job or job transfer. More than one in four (27%) moved to be closer to family, a significant increase from the previous year.
For customers who cited COVID-19 as a reason for their move, top reasons were concerns for personal and family health and wellbeing (60%) and a desire to be closer to family (59%). Others moved as a result of changes in employment status or work arrangements (57%), including the ability to work remotely, and 53% expressed seeking a lifestyle change or improvement of quality of life.
Minnesota led the list of states people moved to be closer to family (41%); Wyoming led as the primary destination for those seeking a lifestyle change (nearly 29%). More people migrated to Nebraska for a new job or job transfer than any other state (72%), and more people moved to Idaho due to the cost of living than any other state.
The top inbound states (with 250 moves or more) in 2020 were Idaho, South Carolina, Oregon, South Dakota, Arizona, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida and Arkansas.
The top outbound states in 2020 were New Jersey, New York, Illinois, Connecticut, California, Kansas, North Dakota, Massachusetts, Ohio and Maryland.