Housing issues top reasons for moving
Domestic migration is at its lowest level in decades, with nearly 70% of moves within the same county.
Despite — or perhaps because of — the nation's housing woes, 37.5 million Americans moved between 2009 and 2010, and 43% of those moved for housing reasons. Some, obviously, were downsizing, and the figures don't tell us how many moved because of foreclosure.
The second most common reason for moving was family, including marriage and divorce, which accounted for 30.3% of moves, followed by job issues, which accounted for 16.4% of moves, according to new data released by the U.S. Census Bureau.
Of those who moved, 69.3% stayed in the same county, and an additional 16.7% stayed in the same state. Only 11.5% moved to another state, and 2.5% chose to move to another country.
The rate of domestic migration was at its lowest level since 1947, when the Census Bureau started keeping such statistics. The recession and the housing crisis have made it more difficult for Americans to move between cities and states.
"I expected it to tick back up this year, but that didn’t happen," Kenneth Johnson, a demographer at the University of New Hampshire, told The New York Times.
Resident of the Northeast were most likely to stay put, with only 8.3% moving. About 11.8% of Midwest residents moved, as did 13.6% of residents in the South. Residents of the West were most likely to move, with 14.7% changing domiciles.
Nationwide, 12.5% of Americans moved between 2009 and 2010, about the same rate as the previous year and just slightly higher than the record low of two years ago. You can see the detailed statistics here.
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Of those 16 and older who moved, here were some of the reasons:
- 4.13 million wanted a new or better home or apartment.
- 3.31 million wanted to establish their own households.
- 3.07 million wanted cheaper housing.
- 2.38 million had other housing reasons.
- 2.24 million moved for a new job or a job transfer.
- 1.30 million moved to closer to work.
- 1.11 million wanted a better neighborhood or less crime.
- 1.30 million wanted to own, not rent, their homes.
- 837,000 moved to look for work or because they had lost their jobs.
- 204,000 wanted a change in climate.
- 66,000 moved because of a national disaster.
Locally, in the Seattle and Bellevue area (Washington State), real estate has picked up in specific neighborhoods based on public education.
For example the Bellevue School District continues to receive recognition for higher test scores, larger #'s of students going to Universities/Colleges etc.
This reason alone has current and past clients specifically looking to buy primary homes (buy ups) within the districts boundaries. Real Estate listed for sale within these boundaries has and continues to see multiple offers with escalation clauses.
About Teresa Mears
Teresa Mears is a veteran journalist who has been interested in houses since her father took her to tax auctions to carry the cash at age 10. A former editor of The Miami Herald's Home & Design section, she lives in South Florida where, in addition to writing about real estate, she publishes Miami on the Cheap to help her neighbors adjust to the loss of 60% of their property value.