Although U.S News & World Reportmay not agree, Californians defecting from their home state think Dallas is the best place in the world to live. Even better - shocker! - than Austin.
So says a new report by moving and storage company PODS, which crunched their numbers to determine that Dallas was the No. 1 destination for Californians on the move in 2022. Unsurprisingly, Texas was also the top-ranked state.
"It’s only taken a few years, but Dallas has usurped Austin as the top spot for people moving from California to Texas," the study's authors say.
The bottom line for these movers? Money. A side-by-side comparison of Dallas and Sacramento shows that although median household income is less in Dallas than in Sacramento, cost of living, housing costs, and rent are also significantly less. The report says:
- Cost of living: Dallas is 17% lower than Sacramento.
- Median household income: $58,200 (Dallas is 18% lower than Sacramento.)
- Average home value: $309,900 (Dallas is 33% lower than Sacramento.)
- Average rent (one-bedroom): $1,575 (Dallas is 15% lower than Sacramento, with apartments as big as 805 square feet going for $1,500 a month in the city.)
And let's not forget that Texas has no state income tax. (How could we forget? It's mentioned in every study about why people are moving to Texas.) Californians, on the other hand, pay as much as 13.3% in state income tax, PODS says.
"All this adds up to more bang for your buck and an adjusted quality of life," the report says.
Other appealing attributes about Dallas cited in the report include access to several professional sports teams, and a rich nightlife full of bars, restaurants, live music, culture, and art. Dallas-Fort Worth - together, making up the fourth-largest metro area in the U.S. - also has North America's best airport to keep people connected.
In a similar PODS report from 2022, Dallas-Fort Worth was the No. 2 destination for new residents (from all over, not just California) who used their services.
According to PODS, the top 5 destinations for people leaving California are:
- No. 1 – Dallas
- No. 2 – Seattle, Washington
- No. 3 – Portland, Oregon
- No. 4 – Nashville, Tennessee
- No. 5 – Boise, Idaho
In PODS' newest analysis of destination states for Californians, Texas still comes out on top. The overall cost of living in the Lone Star State is 37 percent lower than California, they said. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is under $1,300, which is 44 percent less than an equivalent apartment in the Golden State.
"For many finance-strained Californians, the pandemic was the final push they needed to call it quits and move to the Lone Star State, where cities like Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, and Houston — all cities that made the top 15 out-of-state destinations for Californians — offer up sunny weather, job opportunities, and culture," the report said.
The top destination states for people leaving California are:
- No. 1 – Texas
- No. 2 – Florida
- No. 3 – Washington
- No. 4 – Tennessee
- No. 5 – Oregon