January 21, 2021
Joe Fairless

10 States With The Most Net Migration in 2020

Tennessee ranked number 1; Arizona, Colorado, Nevada on the rise.

Each year, U-Haul ranks each state based on the net gain of one-way U-Haul trucks entering a state versus leaving that state during the calendar year based on over 2 million one-way U-Haul transactions. U-Haul states, “While U-Haul migration trends do not correlate directly to population or economic growth, the Company’s growth data is an effective gauge of how well cities and states are attracting and maintaining residents.”

As commercial real estate investors, one the the major factors we take into account then deciding where to invest are the population trends.

Generally, the more people moving to an area, the more demand for real estate. Therefore, using U-Haul’s annual migration trends report, you can determine if you are in the right market or if you should consider to transitioning to or focusing on a new market.

One of the most interesting changes in 2020 was the state that topped the list. For the first time since 2015, a non-Florida, non-Texas state had the greatest gain in one-way U-Haul trucks entering the state – Tennessee. One-way trips were up 12% year-over-year, resulting in Tennessee jumping from 12th in 2019 to 1st in 2020. Texas was number one for three straight years (2016-2018) before falling to number 2 and being replaced by Florida in 2019. In 2020, Texas held the number 2 spot while Florida dropped to number 3.

Other markets with large jump in the rankings were Arizona (20th in 2019 to 5th in 2020), Colorado (42nd in 2019 to 6th in 2020), and Nevada (24th in 2019 to 8th in 2020).

Which states had the most net loss of one-way U-Haul trips? California was ranked the worst, followed by Illinois. California has ranked 48th out of 50 or lower since 2016, and Illinois has been 49th or 50th since 2015. Other markets with large decreases were North Carolina (3rd in 2019 to 9th in 2020), South Carolina (4th in 2019 to 15th in 2020), Utah (8th in 2019 to 17th in 2020), Alabama (6th in 2019 and 22nd in 2020), Vermont (10th in 2019 and 26th in 2020), Idaho (11th in 2019 and 30th in 2020), and Washington (5th in 2019 and 36th in 2020).

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Click here to see how all 50 states ranked, and here are the 10 states with the most net migration in 2020:

10. Georgia


2019 rank: 16th

9. North Carolina

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2019 rank: 3rd

8. Nevada


2019 rank: 24th

7. Missouri

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2019 rank: 13th

6. Colorado


2019 rank: 42nd

5. Arizona

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2019 rank: 20th

4. Ohio

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2019 rank: 7th

3. Florida


2019 rank: 1st

2. Texas

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2019 rank: 2nd

1. Tennessee

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2019 rank: 12th

Are you an accredited investor who is interested in learning more about passively investing in apartment communities? Click here for the only comprehensive resource for passive apartment investors.

The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell any securities or to make or consider any investment or course of action.

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