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Moving in the United States Demographics

Every year, millions of Americans move within the United States and abroad. Whether for school, job, or family related reasons, moving is a common but difficult process that many Americans undergo. Although data suggests that we are relocating less frequently than the generations before us, and moving is statistically on the decline, most of us will move at some point in our lives.

In this article, I will examine relocation trends in the United States. Relocation is a broad, all-encompassing activity that affects most demographics. However, as you will see below, certain members of society are more likely to relocate than others — raising some interesting questions about the correlation between age and moving.

The Biggest Movers In The USA

According to data by the U.S. Census Bureau, the United States demographic that moved most in 2016 is young adults between the ages of 20 and 29. This statistic refers mostly to college students and recent graduates who may have moved to pursue academic degrees or begin their first jobs post-graduation. Interestingly, of the 10,451,000 young adults who moved, 6,378,000 moved within the same county. This data suggests that this group is more likely to remain in the same area, in close proximity to friends and family, yet move away from home in order to gain independence. In contrast to adults aged 50-59, of which approximately 6% of the age group moved, 23.5% of adults aged 20-29 moved. This means that young adults are much more likely to move than not, a fact that is in keeping with public opinion.

Although only 6% of adults between the ages of 50 and 59 moved, that is still 2,725,000 people. This is somewhat surprising, as those in their fifties are typically regarded as more stable and less likely to move. However, considering the unpredictable economic climate, the ever-increasing age of retirement, and relocations post-retirement, this data becomes more understandable.

As age increases, the number of American relocators decreases. After age 80, fewer than half a million Americans move. That is still a lot of people, but far less than the millions of younger Americans who relocate. Here is U.S. Census relocation data by age group and number of people who moved in 2016.

Age

Movers

15-19

2,178,000

20-29

10,451,000

30-39

5,996,000

40-49

3,624,000

50-59

2,725,000

60-69

1,591,000

70-79

591,000

80-85+

356,000

Continue reading about moving trends in Moving in the United States: Potential Economic Explanations.

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