Moving in

Dallas-Fort Worth welcomes more out-of-state newcomers than any other Texas metro

DFW welcomes more out-of-state newcomers than any other Texas metro

Dallas skyline
Everyone wants to move to DFW. Photo by Joe Daniel Price/Getty Images

Dallas-Fort Worth reigns as a magnet for people relocating from outside Texas, as a new report from Texas Realtors shows DFW accounted for more than four of every 10 people who moved to the Lone Star State from out of state in 2017.

In 2017, DFW attracted 230,118 out-of-state newcomers, according to just-released report. That made it the No. 1 metro destination for people relocating to Texas from outside the state. The Houston metro area came in second, with 203,270 out-of-state arrivals in 2017.

Four DFW counties ranked among the top 10 Texas counties in 2017 for drawing out-of-state residents, the report says. Dallas County was No. 2, with Tarrant County at No. 3, Collin County at No. 6, and Denton County at No. 9. Harris County, anchored by Houston, was No. 1.

The Texas Realtors report analyzed migration data from the U.S. Census Bureau and U-Haul. Based on that analysis, Texas ranked second in the U.S. for relocation activity in 2017.

California led the pack for states sending residents to Texas in 2017, followed by Florida, Louisiana, Illinois, and New York, according to the report. Among U.S. metro areas, Los Angeles shipped the most residents to Texas, with New York City in second place and Chicago in third.

“Texas remained a hotbed of relocation activity in 2017 due in part to our diverse job opportunities, record-breaking housing market and booming economy,” Tray Bates, 2019 chairman of Texas Realtors, says in a release. “This is the fifth year in a row that Texas has gained more than 500,000 new residents from out of state, and we anticipate that trend will continue in the coming years.”

A major reason for the surge of people in DFW and elsewhere in Texas is the surge of companies moving to the state.

From 2000 to 2013, Texas was the country’s No. 1 destination for corporate relocations, luring more than 25,000 businesses and more than 300,000 jobs, according to a 2018 report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. During the same period, close to 18,000 businesses left the state, costing about 200,000 jobs. Nevertheless, Texas led all states for employment growth from out-of-state arrivals, with a net gain of about 100,000 jobs from 2000 to 2013. 

“Texas, with its hospitable business climate, is a leading contender for firms looking to cross state borders,” the report says. “Anecdotal reports have long highlighted the state’s ability to attract businesses from high-tax and heavy-regulation places, such as California and New York … .”