Florida showed gains, California showed declines

As US home prices continue to rise and remote work remains for many Americans, a new real estate analysis shows where the most people are moving in 2022.

The data, compiled by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), used address change data from the United States Postal Service to identify migration trends. The analysis covered relocations by ZIP code across the country during 2022.

While housing is the number one reason people move, data shows that housing-related moves have increased even more due to the pandemic. For example, 46% of moves were for housing-related reasons in 2021, according to the US Census Bureau. This is an increase of 6 percentage points from the previous year.

According to the data, the NAR says the increase was primarily due to people looking for a better neighborhood, cheaper housing, and a desire for a bigger, newer home.

Florida was the fastest growing state in 2022

Florida, Texas, and the Carolinas were the states with the largest net gains in internal migration in 2022.

According to NAR, this migration significantly fueled population growth in these areas.

b8e037c0-The rental price increases almost throughout the country

MIAMI, FLORIDA – SEPTEMBER 29: In an aerial view, the Miami city skyline where many tenants reside in the apartment buildings on September 29, 2021 in Miami, Florida. According to an analysis by Realtor.com, rents across the country are rising, with th

The data found that Florida was the fastest growing state in 2022, with an annual population increase of 1.9% in one year.

In fact, according to NAR, this was the first time since 1957 that Florida’s population grew faster than anywhere else in the US.

“With most of these fast-growing areas located in the south, this region remains the most populous region, with nearly 130 million residents.” nar wrote.

NAR said that a common feature of these populated areas, aside from the fact that they are located in the Sun Belt region, was a strong job market recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic. Among the top 10 states there was an approximately 5% increase in jobs in 2022 compared to March 2020.

The 10 fastest growing states in 2022:

  • Florida: 318,885 (Net migration 2022), 1.9% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Texas: 230,961 (Net migration 2022), 1.6% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • North Carolina: 99,796 (Net migration 2022), 1.3% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • South Carolina: 84,030 (Net migration 2022), 1.7% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Tennessee: 81,646 (Net migration 2022), 1.2% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Georgia: 81,406 (Net migration 2022), 1.2% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Arizona: 70,984 (Net migration 2022), 1.3% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Idaho: 28,639 (Net migration 2022), 1.8% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Alabama: 28,609 (2022 net migration), 0.5% (2022-2021 population change)
  • Oklahoma: 26,791 (Net migration 2022), 0.7% (Population change 2022-2021)

California saw the highest emigration in 2022

Meanwhile, California, New York, and Illinois experienced the largest net national emigration, and as a result, the population shrank further in these states.

Despite this decline, California remained the most populous state, with nearly 39 million statewide residents.


Night view of the Los Angeles skyline from the Griffth Observatory, located on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park, just above the Los Feliz neighborhood, the tall buildings of downtown Los Angeles are clearly visible in the rear

Although NAR said many people are returning to these areas as employers demand a return to the office, departures still outpace inflows in these large areas.

Affordability hit all-time lows in 2022, which is a primary reason people continue to relocate from these large urban centers to less dense, more affordable areas. However, according to USPS data, Los Angeles, San Jose, and Washington, DC all experienced migration gains.

10 states with the highest emigration in 2022:

  • California: -343,230 (Net migration 2022), -0.3% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • New York: -299,597 (Net migration 2022), -0.9% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Illinois: -141,656 (Net Migration 2022), -0.8% (Population Change 2022-2021)
  • New Jersey: -64,231 (Net migration 2022), -0.1% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Massachusetts: 7,292 (Net migration 2022), -0.1% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Louisiana: 46,672 (Net migration 2022), -0.8% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Maryland: -45,101 (Net migration 2022), -0.2% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Pennsylvania: -39,957 (Net migration 2022), -0.3% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Virginia: -23,952 (Net migration 2022), 0.3% (Population change 2022-2021)
  • Minnesota: -19,400 (Net migration 2022), 0.1% (Population change 2022-2021)

Fewer Americans moved in 2022

Although the population continues to increase, fewer Americans decided to move in 2022. After a record low rate of move in 2021, data indicates that even fewer Americans moved across the country last year. But this is not a new trend.

RELATED: Buying a home is now more affordable than renting in these 5 US cities

Millions of people have moved during the pandemic, driven by the opportunity to work remotely, a desire for more space, and better affordability.

This story was reported from Los Angeles.