Top Reasons for Relocating: Crime and Cost

HOUSTON. – (By Dale King, Realty News Report) – Folks who’ve pulled up stakes and moved to new homes or apartments since the height of the COVID-19 pandemic could probably cite a lengthy roster of reasons for seeking out new digs.

Seattle-based real estate firm Redfin just released a survey listing a half dozen of the most popular motives for seeking out greener pastures.

Among homeowners, “crime and safety” accounted for 50 percent of responses while 40 percent of renters pointed to the “cost of living” as “an important factor” in finding a new place to live.

The data contained in the report is based on an August 2021 Redfin survey of 1,023 U.S. residents who moved to a new home during the 18 months prior to the survey.

“There are plenty of positive reasons to make a move, but sometimes people move to flee a place where they felt unsafe,” said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather. “Concerns with crime, especially among homeowners, contributed to a recent increase in migration out of cities and into more suburban and rural areas.”

He said cities have “historically been able to attract residents looking for high paying jobs, but now that remote work is ubiquitous, some may have to work on improving safety and other quality of life factors to retain and attract residents. This might be an uphill battle, because as wealthy residents leave, they take tax dollars with them, leaving cities with fewer resources to address safety concerns for remaining residents.”

Actually, the stats for all six top reasons to relocate were not terribly far apart, the Redfin report notes. Owners of their own dwellings said their personal safety and control of crime mattered “a lot” or “was the most important factor” for moving. This was also the most popular reason cited by 35 percent of renters.

And while 40 percent of leaseholders found “cost of living” the move influential motive when eyeballing rental property, 43 percent of homeowners also listed the financial factor at the top of the list.

Property owners put “school quality” on the same par as “cost of living.” The Redfin report said 43 percent of residential owners found them equally important.  School quality, however, didn’t make the grade with that many renters, said the real estate firm.  Only 22 percent found superior educational facilities in their list of top selections.

Redfin said taxes play a more crucial role in homeowner choices than they do to renters, but tax levies are not terribly significant on either list. Only 34 percent of property owners put it on their “care-about” list while 13 percent of renters find it important to tuck away their receipts for their periodic visit to the taxman.

Climate change may mean a lot to international delegates in Glasgow, but it doesn’t cause an increase in the pitter-patter of homeowners’ (26 percent) or renters’ (10 percent) hearts.

People who’ve move to dwellings in owned homes and rental units since March of 2020 ranked racial diversity at the bottom of the roster, though very closely behind climate change. Just 24 percent of homeowners and 12 percent of leaseholders placed this concept high up on their lists.

The report also dealt with the issues impacting people who acquired homes locally versus those who wandered afar for new living conditions.

Redfin said people who moved to a new metro area were more likely than those who stayed local to say that taxes and climate change were issues that factored into their decision of where to move.

Nearly a third (32 percent) of metro-movers said that taxes were a major factor in their choice of where to move, compared to nearly a quarter (24 percent) of those who stayed in the same metro.

Climate change was a major factor for 24 percent of metro-movers and 19 percent of those who moved within a metro.

With many workers now finding themselves newly mobile thanks to recent expansions of remote work, this could portend a wave of migration inspired by taxes and climate change, Redfin’s report opined.

Nov. 3, 2021 Realty News Report Copyright 2021

Photo credit: Ralph Bivins, Realty News Report Copyright 2021

File: Top Reasons for Relocating: Crime and Cost. Redfin.

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1 comment

Mac W December 9, 2021 at 4:27 am

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