Written by Brittany N. Johnson
May’s National Moving Month kicks off the start of the summer moving season. The weather is starting to warm up and it’s a great time to make the transition to a new location. While the unfortunate Coronavirus pandemic has no doubt made an impact on the economy, a new national survey commissioned by Our Town America shows many people are actually looking to move – some as a result of the current crisis.
The survey of 1,000 people across America answers the question of whether or not people will relocate homes due to Coronavirus and offers responses that might shock you!
The survey first gathered personal information to gain a better understanding of the context for responses. Our diverse pool of respondents is a good representation of the general population’s thoughts during the moving season.
- When asked, what is your age?
9.6% said Generation Z (18-23 years old)
32.7% said Millennials (24-39 years old)
27.5% said Generation X (40-55 years old)
26.7% said Boomers (56-74 years old)
3.6% said Silent Generation (75+ years old)
- When asked, do you identify as male or female?
49.2% said Male
50.3% said Female
0.5% said Neither
- When asked, Which State do you live in?
10.0% said California
10.0% said Connecticut
10.0% said Florida
10.0% said Illinois
10.0% said Louisiana
10.0% said Massachusetts
10.0% said Michigan
10.1% said New Jersey
10.0% said New York
10.0% said Pennsylvania
- When asked, what is your current marital status?
31.5% said Single, never married
48.4% said Married
7.9% said Divorced
0.7% said Separated
3.5% said Widowed
7.8% said Living with partner or significant other
0.3% said Prefer not to answer
- When asked, how many children do you have?
45.5% said 0
17.6% said 1
23.4% said 2
8.0% said 3
3.4% said 4
1.3% said 5
0.5% said 6
0.3% said 7
0.1% said 8 or more
- When asked, in what type of area do you currently live?
32.4% said City
52.8% said Suburbs
14.8% said Rural
- When asked, how long have you lived in your current state?
1.7% said A few months
2.0% said One year
7.3% said Two to five years
6.1% said Six to ten years
6.6% said Eleven to fifteen years
5.4% said Sixteen to twenty years
19.8% said More than twenty years
51.1% said My whole life
How people view the effects of Coronavirus
Next, we had to identify concerns of Coronavirus in the survey takers’ current state. If someone lives in a hotspot for Coronavirus, would they consider moving? Would they consider moving because of something related to the Coronavirus? Understanding the feelings of this crisis, we were able to paint a clearer picture of our respondents’ situations.
- When asked, how concerned are you about Coronavirus in your area?
51.0% said Very concerned
31.7% said Somewhat concerned
12.4% said Moderately concerned
4.9% said Not at all concerned
- When asked, how do you feel about where you live right now? (Choose best answer)
4.5% said I hate it
7.3% said I don’t like it
26.2% said It’s OK, but I feel as if I need a change
31.1% said I like it
11.2% said I love it, but I feel like I need to move
19.8% said I love it and I’m never moving
- When asked, you live in one of the hotspot States for Coronavirus. Would you consider moving?
41.7% said Yes
58.3% said No
- When asked, would you consider moving because of anything related to the coronavirus?
26.0% said Yes
74.0% said No
- When asked, how strongly would you consider a move? (Choose best answer)
36.5% said Very strongly
50.8% said Somewhat strongly
12.7% said Would mildly consider
- When asked, what is it related to Coronavirus that makes you consider moving? (Select all that apply)
41.5% said the coronavirus may take (and/or has already taken) a toll on my health or the health of my family member(s)
43.5% said the coronavirus may take (and/or has already taken) a toll on my finances
37.3% said the coronavirus may take (and/or has already taken) a toll on my mental well-being
25.8% said Because of the coronavirus, I lost work/my job and/or my business is suffering
33.1% said I’m tired of stay-at-home orders
35.4% said I want my freedom and want lesser restrictions
23.8% said the coronavirus may take (and/or has already taken) a toll on my relationships
Driving forces to move because of the pandemic
The next section shows when, where and why people would move due to Coronavirus. So many options for people to consider!
- When asked, when would you move? (Choose best answer)
19.6% said as fast as I can. I want out!
8.1% said This spring
16.5% said This summer
12.7% said This fall
6.5% said This winter
17.7% said Sometime next year
18.8% said Sometime in the next few years
- When asked, how strongly would you consider a move if there’s a second wave of Coronavirus where you live? (Choose best answer)
16.2% said Very strongly
18.2% said Somewhat strongly
27.0% said Would mildly consider
38.7% said Would not consider at all
- When asked, would you want to move to an area that was less effected by the Coronavirus? (Had fewer Coronavirus cases and deaths compared to where you live now)
53.3% said Yes
46.7% said No
- When asked, why do you want to move to an area less effected by the Coronavirus? (Select all that apply)
29.0% said Fewer people
39.5% said Less chance of me and my family catching coronavirus
26.6% said Less chance of another resurgence of coronavirus that shuts down the whole area
9.7% said My area will have bad memories of coronavirus and I need to get away
27.0% said Need a new place for a fresh start
16.7% said I want to live in an area that has/had looser restrictions or no restrictions at all.
44.2% said I want peace of mind for me and my family
31.8% said I want somewhere less expensive to live
27.7% said I want to live in an area with a warmer climate
8.2% said I want my kids to be able to start school sooner
23.6% said I’m hoping for better job opportunities
12.9% said I want easier access to medical facilities
10.5% said I want an area that will have more amenities/ areas for my pet
- When asked, why did you select ‘I want to move to an area with warmer climate’? (Choose best answer)
16.9% said I think Coronavirus has less chance to spread in a warmer climate
52.7% said Warmer climate is better for my physical and mental health
23.0% said I’ve been cooped up too long inside and want more outside time year round
7.4% said Since prices may drop, I can hopefully afford it now
- When asked, what region would you most likely move to? Select one.
16.4% said New England (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT)
13.4% said Mid-Atlantic (NJ, NY, PA)
9.6% said East North Central (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI)
4.1% said West North Central (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD)
26.1% said South Atlantic (DE, FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, DC, WV)
2.8% said East South Central (AL, KY, MS, TN)
7.3% said West South Central (AR, LA, OK, TX)
9.6% said Mountain West (AZ, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, UT, WY)
10.9% said Pacific (AK, CA, HI, OR, WA)
- When asked, Which State(s) would you most likely move to? (Choose your top 3)
8.1% said Arizona
15.5% said California
6.1% said Colorado
20.9% said Florida
5.1% said Georgia
3.5% said Hawaii
3.3% said Illinois
3.5% said Louisiana
3.9% said Maine
6.2% said Massachusetts
3.3% said Michigan
3.9% said Nevada
3.6% said New Hampshire
5.7% said New Jersey
6.0% said New York
10.0% said North Carolina
3.6% said Ohio
5.4% said Oregon
5.2% said Pennsylvania
6.8% said South Carolina
3.5% said Tennessee
8.7% said Texas
3.8% said Virginia
4.8% said Washington
46.9% said All Others (click to expand/hide)
1.9% said Alabama
1.7% said Alaska
1.7% said Arkansas
2.9% said Connecticut
2.6% said Delaware
0.6% said District of Colombia
0.7% said Idaho
2.3% said Indiana
1.7% said Iowa
1.2% said Kansas
1.3% said Kentucky
1.6% said Maryland
1.0% said Minnesota
0.9% said Mississippi
2.3% said Missouri
2.6% said Montana
2.3% said Nebraska
1.5% said New Mexico
1.3% said North Dakota
1.6% said Oklahoma
1.7% said Rhode Island
1.2% said South Dakota
2.2% said Utah
2.9% said Vermont
1.9% said West Virginia
1.3% said Wisconsin
2.0% said Wyoming
Worries about the Coronavirus and the lasting impacts
What is our future going to look like? Is now a good time to make a move? People answer these questions in the next section.
- When asked, did you or anyone in your family lose work or a job because of Coronavirus?
34.8% said Yes
65.2% said No
- When asked, Is the Coronavirus causing you to worry?
76.3% said Yes
23.7% said No
- When asked, what are your Coronavirus worries about? Select all that apply.
55.6% said Finances
38.4% said My job/work/business
73.6% said Health
46.6% said Mental well-being
42.4% said Friends
67.9% said Family
22.0% said Education
36.0% said My kid’s well-being
Analyzing the response to Coronavirus
Do you agree with how your state handled the pandemic? Is that a factor to consider moving? People have opinions on how community leaders handled the COVID-19 crisis. See the multiple responses below.
- When asked, do you think your area will get back to normal/pre Covid-19?
66.6% said Yes
33.4% said No
- When asked, do you feel the Stay-At-Home restrictions in your area were too severe?
30.4% said Yes
69.6% said No
- When asked, would you have preferred no Stay-At-Home orders and just taken a chance?
28.0% said Yes
72.0% said No
- When asked, describe how you are/were feeling during the lockdown? (Choose all that apply)
16.3% said Stir-crazy, about to lose it
27.9% said Isolated
18.0% said Lonely
9.7% said Miserable
34.0% said Worried
23.8% said Felt lazy
28.6% said Fine
26.7% said Enjoyed the peace of not having to go out and do anything
20.9% said Healing. I think the world needed this.
- When asked, what do/did you miss the most during Stay-At-Home orders? (Choose top 3)
33.1% said Spending time with family and friends
34.2% said Eating out at restaurants
11.1% said Exercising
12.1% said Going to work
17.8% said Freedom
11.0% said Attending religious services
2.7% said Going to school
18.1% said Going to movies, concerts, plays, community events
6.7% said Going to sporting events
12.0% said Watching sporting events
17.1% said Shopping
12.3% said Going to the salon for a dye job or haircut
5.0% said Going to the doctor
3.3% said Going to get a massage
3.2% said Going to get my nails done
17.3% said Following my regular routine
30.3% said Getting out and doing errands without worrying about my health (i.e. grocery shopping, dropping clothes off at the dry cleaners, visiting the bank, etc.)
15.8% said Attending functions for families and friends
4.1% said Taking my pet(s) to local parks, events, etc.
- When asked, are you ready for the country to open up again?
65.7% said Yes
34.3% said No
- When asked, Are you at all scared for your future?
64.0% said Yes
36.0% said No
- When asked, would you be less scared for your future if you lived in an area that was not as effected by the Coronavirus?
57.4% said Yes
42.6% said No
- When asked, how would you describe where you live now as it relates to the Coronavirus? (Choose all that apply)
3.5% said Invasion of the body snatchers
6.7% said Hell
22.4% said Scary
30.1% said Weird
17.8% said Unhealthy
14.4% said Suffocating
11.0% said Prison
5.0% said Militant
28.3% said Boring
6.1% said Fun
15.4% said Pleasant
26.9% said Same as always
- When asked, if you do move, would you be open to trying out new businesses in your new city?
70.5% said Yes
29.5% said No
- When asked, Will you eat at restaurants as restrictions loosen up or stick to takeout and curbside?
35.1% said Eat inside restaurants
48.8% said Stick to Takeout and Curbside
16.2% said Not eat out at all
Incentives to Move
Considering that quarantining has made many people feel isolated and stir crazy, it’s safe to assume that folks will be looking to move to homes with a yard for their families and pets to safely enjoy the outdoors. So, what type of offers would make moving more appealing? Find out what the respondents said in the next section!
- When asked, if you moved to a new city, what should a business do to get you to try out their products or services? (Check all that apply)
39.3% said Offers of free goods and services
49.7% said Takeout or Delivery service
62.3% said Prove they’re following government approved guidelines to keep workers and customers healthy and safe during this pandemic
- When asked, would you take advantage of a proven offer (i.e. free meal, haircut, etc.) from a local business if they took the time to welcome you to your new community upon move-in?
81.4% said Yes
18.6% said No
- When asked, Would you use a business directory (such as TakeOutOpen.com) that listed restaurants open for takeout/delivery as you live (or when you were living) in quarantine, had you known it was available?
70.6% said Yes
29.4% said No
- When asked, would you use a business directory (such as TakeOutOpen.com) that listed restaurants open for takeout/delivery when the quarantine is fully lifted, if you knew it was available?
72.8% said Yes
27.2% said No
- When asked, if you were to move, do you feel neighbors will be somewhat hesitant to come over and welcome you since you moved from a Coronavirus hotspot?
67.8% said Yes
32.2% said No
- When asked, if you were to move, do you think it would be nice for your new neighbors to welcome you?
78.9% said Yes
21.1% said No
- When asked, how would you prefer new neighbors welcome you to your new area? (Check all that apply)
32.2% said Leave a card in the mailbox
30.9% said Leave a welcome gift on the front porch
59.6% said Flag me down when I’m in the front yard and introduce themselves following social distancing guidelines
36.5% said Knock on the door and say hello
- When asked, would receiving a housewarming gift make you feel more comfortable in a new home/neighborhood?
69.0% said Yes
31.0% said No
The survey results show that this is an opportune time for businesses to reach out to consumers with an invitation to try out their business – whether in-store or through curbside/pickup.
For 48 years, Our Town America has helped hundreds of thousands of businesses target new movers. The exclusive Welcome Package has brought millions of new, loyal customers to thousands of local businesses by inviting them to try their products or services through a beautifully crafted one-time-use housewarming gift certificate.
Read full press release here: As U.S. Reopens, Coronavirus Concerns Could Lead to Mass Exodus
All statistics drawn from the full survey commissioned by Our Town America, which can be found here: Survey Says: Are People Moving During the Coronavirus Pandemic
Brittany is the head of Our Town America’s corporate marketing department. She specializes in digital and print media, social media, and public relations.