ACCORDING TO THE NEW GEOGRAPHIC mobility report released by the Census Bureau, only 14 percent of the population moved between 2003 and 2004. The low rate is a continuation of the gradual long-term decline in residential mobility since the late 1940s. However, despite this tendency to stay put, roughly 39 million Americans staked claims in new neighborhoods.
Results show that the vast majority of movers—about 23 million of them—made short moves to new residences in the same county in which they previously lived. In terms of net domestic migration, the South was the only region to gain, making out with 419,000 new residents. The good news for builders: Most of the 3.63 million people who relocated did so because they wanted to buy a home rather than continue renting. Wanting to own a home was the second most cited reason for moving, after other family reason (4.36 million) and before new job or job transfer (3.57 million).
SOURCE: U.S. CENSUS BUREAU, CURRENT POPULATION SURVEY, 2004 ANNUAL SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC SUPPLEMENT