The U.S. Census Bureau issued a report in June that analyzes the rate of household moves between 2012 and 2013, as well as the main reasons for moving. The report draws on data collected in February, March, and April of 2013 from the Annual Social and Economic Supplement of the Current Population Survey. A previous analysis was conducted in 1999.
According to the report, 36 million (12%) Americans over one year of age moved to a new residence between 2012 and 2013, down from 16% between 1998 and 1999. Forty-eight percent reported moving for housing-related reasons, 30% for family-related reasons, 19% for job-related reasons, and 2% for other reasons.
Renters are more likely than homeowners to move for housing-related reasons. Ten percent of renters moved in order to have less expensive housing, compared to 5% of homeowners. Seeking a better home compelled 16% of renters to move, compared to 12% of homeowners; and 4% of renters compared to 2% of homeowners moved in order to live in a better neighborhood.
The housing-related factors for decisions to move have shifted since 1999. In 2013, 8% of respondents claimed they moved to find more affordable housing, up from 6% in 1999. The desire to shift from renting to owning decreased from 8% in 1999 to 6% in 2013, and the desire for a better home or apartment decreased from 21% in 1999 to 15% in 2013.
People also moved for job-related reasons in 2013. Forty-eight percent of moves greater than 500 miles were tied to job changes, while only 18% of moves greater than 500 miles were tied to housing reasons. However, 42% of moves less than 50 miles were for housing-related reasons.
Fifty-three percent of African American movers selected a housing-related factor as the main reason for moving in 2013, compared to 49% of Hispanics and 46% of non-Hispanic Whites.