One of the more prominent indicators of moving trends within the United States has been the statistics issued by leading self-moving rental company U-Haul. The iconic company has released its annual review of interstate moves for 2021, and there were no big surprises.
Texas and Florida were the two biggest winning states for new arrivals. Texas earned the top spot for the year by narrowly beating out Florida in the company’s U-Haul Growth Index. Tennessee, South Carolina, and Arizona rounded out the top five. The Southeast, Southwest, and Rocky Mountain areas of the United States led the way to grow for the year.
U-Haul measures growth by calculating the net gain of the one-way truck and trailer rentals going into a state against the number leaving the state during a year. The company has information from more than 2 million one-way rental contracts it enters every year.
In 2021, California had so many former inhabitants taking out one-way rentals to leave the state that U-Haul ran out of trucks in the state. California was 50th in growth for the second straight year, and Illinois was 49th. California’s numbers for 2021 were not as bad as they were for 2020, but that was likely because U-Haul could not keep trucks in stock for residents getting out of the state dominated by liberal politicians and policies.
Overall trends indicate that another leading factor in interstate moves is tax favorability. People are rapidly leaving high-tax “blue” states to move to “red” states. In 2021, the national population remained broadly stable. However, the District of Columbia lost 2.8 percent of its population between April 2020 and July 2021. During the same period, New York lost 1.8 percent of its population.
California, New Jersey, New York, and the District of Columbia have double-digit income tax rates of the bottom third of states losing residents. Florida, Texas, and Tennessee have no state income tax.