By Carlo Calma
The city of Chicago is staying true to its title as the third largest U.S. city – it has been listed among America’s most popular cities to move to, according to United Van Lines.
The St. Louis-based moving company listed Chicago in their “2012 Post-Peak Season Moving Trends Summary,” currently trailing behind Washington, D.C., which was the top destination Americans moved to this summer. This is the 35th year United Van Lines has been tracking domestic moving trends in the United States.
United Van Lines’ Methodology
To keep track of the “city-to-city migration” patterns in the country, the company explained in a press release that they analyzed moves during the peak moving season between May 1 and Aug. 31, when “more than 30 percent of all domestic household goods moves take place.”
Carl Walter, vice president of marketing and communications for United Van Lines, explained that their moving management systems allows them to “efficiently track customers’ individual shipments,” and to compile this overall list.
“As the nation’s largest household goods mover, our annual data reflects overall migration trends, giving us a realistic account of which U.S. cities are gaining and losing population,” said Walter in the press release.
Where Chicago Stands
What’s interesting about where Chicago stands in United Van Lines’ summary is that not only is it the No. 2 city that American families were moving to this summer, but it was also the No. 2 city that people were moving away from.
Michael Stoll, professor and chair of the Department of Public Policy at the University of California, Los Angeles, explained in an email to Chicago Agent that Chicago appeared at the same spot in both lists because of its reputation as the third largest metro area in the country.
“As such [there are] many more people moving in and out than other average sized metro areas in the country,” said Stoll.
Stoll attributes the influx in people moving into Chicago because its “job market has improved faster than that of other job markets in similar sized metro areas.”
But Stoll further explains that even though unemployment has been “falling the past three months,” the unstable economy still plays a factor into consumers’ decision on choosing where to live.
“Though there is improvement in Chicago’s economy recently, its job market problems remain difficult, and as such may still be prompting more people to move out than in,” said Stoll.
The Top 10 Cities Americans Moved To
Based on United Van Lines’ summer moving data, the top 10 popular cities Americans moved to were:
- Washington, D.C.
- Los Angeles
United Van Lines will release their 36th annual migration study, which tracks the most popular destinations during the entire year, in January 2013.
To view the complete list, and to also see the top cities that American families were moving away from, visit United Van Lines’ site here.
Planning on making a move to/away from any of the cities listed by United Van Lines? Sound off and tell us why in the comments section!