January 4, 2016 / By Leila Miller
People are still moving to Florida in droves. But we’re not the No. 1 choice.
A recent study conducted by moving company United Van Lines ranked Florida as the sixth most popular moving destination in the United States for households moving within the country.
Topping the list for the third year in a row was Oregon, followed by South Carolina, Vermont, Idaho and North Carolina. Nevada, the District of Columbia, Texas and Washington state rounded out the top 10.
In the 2015 United National Movers study, New York and New Jersey were the states most fled.
For the study, United Van Lines surveyed its customers’ migration trends over the last year. It reported an increasing number of people moving to southern and western states and cited employment, retirement and proximity to family as the primary reasons for the moves.
“Nationwide we’re seeing a lot of people come out of the Northeast and Midwest and they’re moving South and West,” said Melissa Sullivan, a company spokesperson.
The 2015 study was the company’s 39th annual survey of moving trends. It was based on data from 123,047 moves, including 10,612 moves to Florida and 7,444 exits from the state.
Frank Schnidman, the Executive Director for the Center for Urban and Environmental Solutions at Florida Atlantic University, said in a telephone interview that Florida continues to be an attractive destination because of its weather and unskilled labor jobs in tourism and construction services.
“The concept of retiring to Florida is so well marketed that people believe that they are entitled to a life in Florida,” Schnidman said.“Retirement is a factor, lack of state income tax plays of role, and a lot of the movement other than retirement is for increasing number of jobs.” Orlando is a top destination for job migration, he said, while Boca Raton, Palm Beach County, and Broward County are top retirement destinations.
In the study, Florida followed North Carolina and Idaho as a “high inbound state,” where 55 percent or more of the company’s moves were people going into the state.