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Hot State or Not? United Van Lines Reports


See if people are fleeing or flocking to your next expansion target, according to United Van Lines annual mover survey.

Idaho’s hot but New Jersey’s not, at least according to United Van Lines 43rd annual survey tracking who’s moving in and out of the nation’s 48 contiguous states while using UVL’s service. It makes a fun read (albeit unscientific) for any franchise thinking about its next expansion target.

While New Jersey (68.5 percent) has ranked among the top 10 outbound states for the past 11 years, California (43.1 percent) was new to the top 10 outbound in 2019, the survey said. Of those who left California in 2019, nearly two out of five (39.02 percent) cited a new job/company transfer as their reason for moving. (No mention was made of wildfires, franchise laws or minimum wage, despite the many complaints from FT readers.)

Sadly, my home state of North Dakota was the ninth-highest outbound and my newly adopted state of Illinois was No. 2 on the outbound list. Minnesota, home of Franchise Times headquarters, is deemed a “balanced” state, with even percentages of people moving in and out.

The Pacific Northwest was a people magnet, as were Arizona, South Carolina and Florida. New York, Connecticut and Kansas all made the “move-out” list.

Moving In
The top inbound states (with 250 moves or more) (United Van Lines customers) of 2019 were: 

  1. Idaho 
  2. Oregon 
  3. Arizona 
  4. South Carolina 
  5. Washington 
  6. District of Columbia 
  7. Florida 
  8. South Dakota 
  9. North Carolina 
  10. New Mexico

New to the 2019 top inbound list is Florida at No. 7, with an inbound percentage of 58.1. 

Moving Out 
The top outbound states for 2019 were:

  1. New Jersey 
  2. Illinois 
  3. New York 
  4. Connecticut 
  5. Kansas 
  6. Ohio 
  7. California 
  8. Michigan 
  9. North Dakota 

The 2019 United Van Lines study is based on household moves handled by United within the 48 contiguous states and Washington, D.C. and ranks states based off the inbound and outbound percentages of total moves in each state. United classifies states as "high inbound" if 55 percent or more of the moves are going into a state, "high outbound" if 55 percent or more moves were coming out of a state or "balanced" if the difference between inbound and outbound is negligible.


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About This Blog

The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Laura MichaelsLaura Michaels is editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is senior editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is restaurants editor at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at




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