Story at a glance
- The Sunshine State’s population grew by nearly 2 percent.
- Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee also saw population boosts.
- California saw the largest number of residents move out of state in 2022, yet it remains the most populous state in the country.
More people moved to Florida than any other state in the country in 2022, according to a new report from the National Association of Realtors.
The Sunshine State saw the highest net domestic migration gains last year, with its population growing by 1.9 percent. It was followed by Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee, respectively, with regard to domestic net migration totals.
Overall, 26 states had more people move into their regions than out.
For the past six years, the moving rate in the United States has declined, with the rate reaching a historic low in 2021.
Despite this trend, positive net domestic migration gains helped boost population growth in certain areas. Florida’s population increase of 1.9 percent marks the first time since 1957 the state grew faster than anywhere else in the country.
“While housing is the main reason people move, data shows that housing-related moves rose even further due to the pandemic,” the report reads.
In 2021, more than 45 percent of moves were made because of housing-related reasons, marking a 6 percentage point increase from the previous year.
The majority of fast-growing regions are located in the South, an area home to nearly 130 million people. Georgia, Arizona, Idaho, Alabama, and Oklahoma made up the latter half of the top 10 states with the biggest domestic net migration totals.
In comparison, California, New York and Illinois saw the largest net domestic outmigration last year, respectively, despite California remaining the most populous state.
New Jersey, Massachusetts, Louisiana and Maryland also had less people move into their state than move out.
With regard to metro areas, Ocala, Fl.a; Tallahassee, Fla.; Charlotte, N.C.; Savannah, Ga.; Houston; Deltona, Fla.; and Myrtle Beach, S.C., all saw inbound moves exceed outbound moves by more than 6 percentage points.
In addition to being located in the Sun Belt, all these areas experienced a significant job market recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the report. On average, the areas with the highest inbound move rates have 5 percent more jobs now compared with March 2020.
The Miami metro area experienced the largest inbound gains from movers compared with prepandemic levels, with moves increasing by nearly 60 percent in 2022 compared with 2019.
Meanwhile, in New York, San Francisco and Chicago, outbound movers still outpace those moving in to the cities, thanks to declining affordability in these metros.