2023 Migration Map - Where are People Moving?

January 17, 2024

The 2023 Allied US Moving Migration Report

Source: Allied Van Lines Inc.

The 2023 Allied US Migration Report presents a detailed analysis of the current trends in interstate moves across the United States, highlighting significant patterns and underlying economic factors.

This year marked another decrease in the volume of interstate moves. Following the 20% decrease in 2022 compared to 2021, there was a further 12% decline in 2023 relative to the previous year. This continuous decline indicates a notable shift in migration patterns over the last two years.

New York State was NOT on the list of the Top 5 Outbound States

Key Takeaways From the Allied Magnet States Report

  • The sustained decrease in interstate moves over the past two years reflects a cautious approach in the face of economic uncertainties, particularly the high mortgage rates.
  • The preference for states like South Carolina and Arizona continues, driven by their lower cost of living and better job opportunities.
  • The high outbound rates from states like Illinois and California suggest ongoing challenges related to living costs and economic factors.
  • City-wise data indicates a preference for mid-sized cities that balance lifestyle and economic benefits.
  • The timing of moves suggests a preference for minimal disruption and aligns with seasonal patterns.

Economic Influences: The Role of Mortgage Rates

A key factor in this decline is the fluctuating mortgage interest rates. After hitting historic lows during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021, rates surged in 2022, reaching their highest levels since 2002. This upward trend continued in 2023, with rates oscillating between 6% and 7%. These high borrowing costs have likely deterred many potential homebuyers, impacting the overall number of interstate moves.

In addition to the fluctuating mortgage interest rates, several other economic factors have significantly influenced the 2023 migration trends in the United States:

  1. Rising Home Prices: The pandemic led to extraordinary growth in home values due to increased demand, rising building costs, and long-term supply constraints. The Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price index indicated an 18.6 percent rise over 12 months, the strongest year-long growth in its history (source). This surge in home prices directly impacted the affordability of housing, especially in urban centers and high-demand states.
  2. Increased Rental Prices: Rental prices, initially falling during the pandemic, have recovered and now exceed pre-pandemic levels. This increase in rental costs has potentially contributed to the migration trends, as people seek more affordable living options (source).
  3. Housing Market Dynamics: The gap between supply and demand in the housing market widened significantly, with a 50 percent decline in the inventory of homes since February 2020. Such a marked reduction in available housing has likely influenced both the cost and the feasibility of moving, particularly in high-demand areas (source).
  4. Inflation and Household Wealth: Rising home prices not only affect affordability but also play a crucial role in overall inflation, which in turn impacts household wealth and neighborhood affordability. Given that shelter makes up nearly a third of the basket for the Consumer Price Index (CPI), even small increases in rent and home prices can have noticeable effects on overall inflation (source).
  5. National Median Home Prices: In 2023, national median home prices rose to $402,600, an 8.5% increase compared to the previous quarter. This rise in prices, coupled with increased monthly mortgage payments and rising family incomes necessary to qualify for mortgages, further illustrates the growing financial challenges faced by potential homebuyers (source).

See Full Report and Interactive Map with States and Key Cities