A man carries two moving boxes to a moving truck in the driveway.

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Nearly One-Third of Americans Plan to Relocate

February 23, 2022

The share of home buyers planning to move from one region to another has grown as many Americans look to relocate to more affordable regions of the U.S.

Nearly one in three home buyers—or 32%—say they want to relocate, a record high, according to a new consumer survey conducted by Redfin. Remote work policies, new job opportunities, and ongoing shortages of affordable housing will likely keep Americans moving, economists say.

“I predict the share of home buyers looking to move to a different area will continue to rise throughout the year,” says Daryl Fairweather, Redfin’s chief economist. “With mortgage rates going up and rents skyrocketing, moving somewhere more affordable is one of the only ways for many Americans to stay within their housing budget. Even workers who are unable to work from home should feel confident about finding a job in a new location with the tight labor market.”

As mortgage rates rise, aspiring buyers may feel more pressure to move. A separate consumer survey from the real estate tech company OJO Labs found that more than 50% of prospective buyers felt optimistic about buying a home over the next three months.

Which markets are drawing the most interest among house hunters? Miami was the most popular migration destination of all major U.S. metros in January, according to Redfin’s analysis, followed by Phoenix; Tampa, Fla.; Sacramento, Calif.; Las Vegas; Cape Coral, Fla.; Dallas; San Antonio, Texas; North Port, Fla.; and Atlanta.

“While Sun Belt cities like Miami and Phoenix aren’t likely to lose their luster anytime soon, rising prices may soon render them slightly less popular for relocators,” Fairweather says. “Home prices—and the costs of other goods and services—are skyrocketing in a lot of these destinations precisely because they’re so popular with out-of-towners. Some home buyers who prioritize affordability may start searching in less expensive northern cities.”

Source: 
Nearly One in Three Homebuyers Is Looking to Relocate, an All-Time High,” Redfin (Feb. 22, 2022) and “Consumers Optimistic About Housing,” REALTOR® Magazine (Feb. 22, 2022)