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15 States Gaining the Most New Residents

15. Texas

Austin alone sees a net increase of about 60 people a day moving to the city, although some of those are from elsewhere in the state. Still, Texas is growing precipitously as a whole. Housing affordability compared to similarly-sized urban areas is a big draw, and while the low price of gas has hurt the oil industry, Texas has enough other things going for it—like tech—to keep people coming. Of all Texas movers, 53.7% were inbound.

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14. Washington, D.C.

You caught us. D.C. technically isn’t a state, but 53.9% of movers who crossed its borders are inbound. In 2012, the District even led the country in move-ins. Inbound traffic slowed considerably in 2014, but the district still wound up in the nation’s top 15 for this year.

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13. Rhode Island

Rhode Island might not lead the list of states seeing a population boom, but when it comes to domestic migration, more people are moving in than out of the state. Perhaps some of that net increase is due to the state’s overhaul of its income tax structure in 2010. Previously, it had been considerably higher than its New England neighbors.

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12. Florida

In 2014, Florida surpassed New York in terms of population. A lot of this seems to be retirees. Florida dominates the list of cities with the oldest populations. This might also have something to do with the state also leading the nation in fraud and identity theft complaints—older Americans are often a target.

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11. Arizona

Arizona’s warm sunny weather is a major selling point for people considering a move. The state is well-known for its quick population growth. It ranks #8 out of all states in percentage change since 2010. But even looking at just domestic movers, 55.2% of them are headed into, rather than out of, the state.

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10. Alabama

You may be surprised to learn that a majority of Alabama movers are headed into the state rather than leaving. But if you ask the workers, they wouldn’t be surprised at all. With a heavy presence in banking (Regions & BBVA) and aerospace (US Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville), there are plenty of high-paying jobs to be had.

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9. Colorado

Colorado has one of our least-expensive cities to raise a family, and Boulder is one of the single best places to start a business, all in one of the most business-friendly states in the nation. The weather, the skiing, the economic growth (and sure, maybe the legal weed) are all enormous draws that could explain why Colorado is seeing a growth in out-of-state movers taking up residence.

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8. North Carolina

Migration has been part of North Carolina's growth for 20 years, and UNC even has a "Carolina Population Center" set up to examine this and other trends. The most commonly-cited reason for moving was "work," but the low cost of living and housing don't hurt either. Nor does the pleasurable climate.

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7. South Carolina

Of the moving trucks that cross South Carolina's border, 56.9% are bringing people to settle within the state. Many of the deciding factors cited are similar to North Carolina's—temperate climate, job growth, and low housing costs. An influx of retirees may also be driving some of that growth.

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6. Washington

Washington state is ranked just above Arizona when it comes to population growth rate. The biggest reason people are moving into The Evergreen State is the job opportunities. With the rise of tech companies (Microsoft and Amazon) as well as other major international companies like Starbucks and Boeing, employees are looking to strike it rich.

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5. South Dakota

South Dakota is somewhat of a sleeper when it comes to the national stage. While it doesn’t have the largest population, what it does offer is a 3.5% unemployment rate (compared to the U.S.’s 4.1%). It’s also the second-best state for female entrepreneurs, which might be why 60.6% of the state’s movers are inbound.

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4. Nevada

Nevada has historically been a big draw for residents coming from different states. While the state was more balanced during the economic crisis, it's starting to see more people move in than out. Lower housing prices than neighboring California are a possible factor, and the entertainment industry and tax situation make it more appealing to retirees.

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3. Idaho

Idaho sees 63.4% of its state-to-state movers settling within its borders. A similar study conducted by Atlas Van Lines shows that many of those new arrivals are seniors. Affordability is a commonly-cited factor, as are the low crime rate and the quality of medical care. The Idaho Statesman suggests (in a somewhat defensive-sounding op-ed) that despite low education and wage statistics, a relatively hands-off government might be an appealing factor for many people.

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2. Oregon

Inbound Oregon movers make up 64.7% of United Van Lines' trips across the Oregon state line, bumping it down to second place after being tops for two years in a row. The most obvious answer to "why" is "hipster migration," but, of course, there are more thoughtful answers. Innovative urban planning is one, as is the balance of city life with rural access and a thriving cultural scene. You can add to the list the high minimum wage.

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1. Vermont

Vermont relocations lean heavily towards people coming in. In fact, it’s the highest rate in the country. Those people tend to come from nearby states and are generally looking for something quieter than the urban hubs of the Northeast. The state has great education rankings, next to no crowding, and the lowest crime rate in the country—quite a feat considering it also has one of the lowest populations, meaning it wouldn't take much crime to drive up that average.

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