Florida was the third most popular state for moves by U-Haul's migration growth data.

By Perri Ormont Blumberg
January 25, 2021
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In light of the coronavirus pandemic, some have taken to bike-riding on county trails. Some have taken to moving across state lines.

Now, in a new report from U-Haul, the moving company took a closer look at just where people are relocating to when they choose to move across state borders. Based on the net gains of U-Haul trucks across borders for each state, they compiled a ranking of all 50 states. The state with the largest net gain of U-Haul trucks crossing its borders last year? Tennessee, followed by Texas and Florida in second and third place, respectively. Representing the South, Missouri (7th), North Carolina (9th), and Georgia (10th) also made it onto the top 10.

So what is it about Tennessee that drew so many newcomers to the state? (Or, self-movers, at least.) "I'm seeing a lot of people from California move (to Tennessee) because they're attracted to our lifestyle," said Jeff Porter, U-Haul Company of Nashville president in the company's article. "Tennessee has no income tax and is very business-friendly. There are plenty of jobs. People and companies are taking note. Places like Nashville, Murfreesboro and Clarksville are attracting tons of new residents. Nashville is ever-growing, and even the era of COVID-19 isn't slowing that. We were seeing movement before the virus hit, but I think the situation has pushed a lot more people away from the West Coast to our state."

Riverwalk area city view along Tennessee River at dawn, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
Credit: Walter Bibikow / Getty Images

Indeed, the data reveals an impressive jump for Tennessee, which last year was number 12 in U-Haul's tally of growth states. This year, arrivals of one-way U-Haul trucks into Tennessee jumped 12% while departures rose only 9% as compared to 2019, "with that disparity catapulting it up the charts," per U-Haul's recap of their findings. U-Haul says that East and Central Tennessee are seeing the highest number of U-Haul arrivals, with cities including Knoxville, the Tri-Cities, Cookeville, Clarksville, Cleveland, Murfreesboro, and Maryville seeing the biggest growth.

Read the full article and see the list here to see where your home state ranks.

Share with us: Are you surprised by Tennessee's popularity? Where does your state appear on the list?