Colorado trucks ahead in U-Haul migration analysis

Colorado ranks among the top 10 destinations for do-it-yourself movers, according to the latest analysis of national migration trends based on U-Haul truck rentals.

Colorado climbed 36 spots to sixth in the 2020 analysis conducted by U-Haul.

Colorado Springs and Fort Collins ranked 19th and 25th, respectively, among the top cities.

U-Haul bases its rankings on one-way trucks entering and leaving states and cities during a calendar year. Information is collected from more than 22,000 U-Haul truck and trailer rental locations. U-Haul handles more than 2 million one-way truck rental transactions a year. 

Although U-Haul truck rental statistics don’t correlate directly with population or economic growth, the information offers a comparison of how states and cities attract and maintain residents.

An influx of do-it-yourself movers to Tennessee during a year marked by the coronavirus pandemic meant a state other than Florida and Texas topped the ranking for the first time since 2015, when North Carolina led the way.

U-Haul customers made Texas and Florida their top two destinations from 2016 to 2019. Texas had the largest net gain of one-way U-Haul trucks for three consecutive years before Florida became No. 1 in 2019. Texas was second for growth and Florida third for 2020.

Along with Colorado, Ohio, Arizona, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina and Georgia rounded out the top 10 states for 2020 growth as self-movers continued to migrate to the Southeast as well as to markets in the Southwest, Midwest and Rocky Mountain regions.

California ranked last in the 2020 ranking, supplanting Illinois as the state with the greatest net loss of U-Haul trucks. California has ranked 48th or lower since 2016. Illinois has ranked 49th or 50th since 2015.

New Jersey, Massachusetts and Maryland rounded out the bottom five states.

North Port, Fla., ranked as the top destination among cities in the 2020 analysis. Kissimmee and Port St. Lucie came in second and third as Florida cities swept the top three positions and took five of the top 25 spots.

Thirteen of the top 25 cities were located in the Southeast. 

The Auburn and Opelika area of Alabama ranked fourth. Madison, Wis, the top destination in 2016, came in fifth for 2020.

Tennessee had two cities on the list, as did Alabama, California, Colorado, Georgia, Texas and Wisconsin.