Stay or Go: Where Rent Shoppers are Looking to Move Away

As the New Year gets closer, many people aspire to make a big change. Some vow to hit the gym more, while others resolve to do something dramatic – like pack up and move to a brand new city.

We were curious where renters were looking to move to and move from, so we analyzed search activity on our rental listings in the 50 largest U.S. metro areas. Nationally, we found that more than a quarter (26.6 percent) of HotPads users search for rentals outside their current metro area.

San Jose and Salt Lake City have the largest share of renters with a wandering eye – nearly half of rental shoppers in these areas are looking to move elsewhere. San Francisco is the most popular search destination for San Jose renters looking to leave, while Los Angeles is the most popular destination for wannabe movers in Salt Lake City.

In general, Los Angeles proves attractive for renters considering a move – and also has the smallest share of current residents looking to leave. Of the metro areas we analyzed, Los Angeles was the most popular search destination for those looking elsewhere, attracting renters from markets like New York, Seattle and New Orleans.

Chicago was also popular with rent shoppers, particularly in Midwestern markets like Milwaukee and Indianapolis.

Overall, our analysis found that booming job markets were more of a lure than rent savings – in about three quarters of the metro areas we analyzed, those looking to move to another area were looking at someplace more expensive.

To figure out where people in your metro area are looking to move – and where the most outsiders want in – check out the map below.