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UHaul: Illinois leads nation in people moving out

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Texas is the No. 1 U.S. Growth State for 2016, according to the latest U-Haul migration trends report.

That makes for quite a turnaround from 2015, when Texas was a net-loss state and ranked No. 39 on this list. The year-over-year arrival of one-way U-Haul truck rentals rose 4 percent last year in Texas while departures held steady.

Releases on each of the top 10 growth states and the top U.S. Growth Cities are available at myuhaulstory.com.

Florida, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Missouri complete the top five growth states. Illinois continues to rank 50th, the top net-loss state, preceded by California's slide to No. 49 after cracking the top five for 2015.

Growth States are calculated by the net gain of one-way U-Haul truck rentals entering a state versus leaving a state during a calendar year. Migration trends data is compiled from more than 1.7 million one-way U-Haul truck rental transactions that occur annually.

While migration trends do not correlate directly to population or economic growth, U-Haul growth data is an effective gauge of how well states are attracting and maintaining residents.

Arrivals outpaced departures 50.8 to 49.2 percent in Texas last year thanks to locations such as Austin, the No. 2 U.S. Growth City in the 50,000-plus population category behind Madison, Wis.

Granbury, McKinney, Richardson, Temple, New Braunfels, Dallas and College Station are other notable Texas growth cities to see a bump in U-Haul arrivals in 2016.

"Everything in Texas is growing exponentially," said Zane Rowland, U-Haul Company of North East Dallas president. "Our market is strong. Lots of major companies are moving to Texas because of the tax breaks. Between the low cost of living, the abundance of job opportunities and the ability to start a business, many people want to move to Texas."

The Lone Star State has gained large operations, or seen expansions of existing operations, with the likes of Toyota, Apple and Amazon to increase employment opportunities.

"I am proud that Texas continues to be the state of choice for those looking for expanded economic opportunities," Gov. Greg Abbott said in response to his state's U-Haul growth ranking. "In the Lone Star State, we recognize that increased regulations and higher taxes are barriers to success for businesses, individuals and families. That is why, as governor, I will continue to work to ensure we promote a pro-growth environment across the state that gives everyone the opportunity to thrive, leading to a more prosperous Texas."

In 2016, U-Haul registered a net gain of about 80 neighborhood dealers across the state, making it more convenient for customers to access U-Haul trucks, trailers, self-storage, moving supplies, hitches, propane and many other products and services.

"When a customer comes to a U-Haul store, something significant is happening in their life," said Kenneth Birch, U-Haul Company of Fort Worth president. "Maybe they just got married, they're moving a child to college, or they got a new job. People come to us because they need help, and our services allow them to move at an affordable cost."

U-Haul is the authority on migration trends thanks to its expansive network that blankets all 50 states and 10 Canadian provinces. The geographical coverage from more than 21,000 U-Haul locations, including neighborhood dealers and Company-owned and -operated stores, provides a comprehensive overview of where people are moving like no one else in the industry.

U-Haul 2016 Growth States

1. Texas
2. Florida
3. Minnesota
4. Wisconsin
5. Missouri
6. Maine
7. Idaho
8. Louisiana
9. Vermont
10. Arkansas
11. Colorado
12. Tennessee
13. Iowa
14. New Hampshire
15. Delaware
16. Washington
17. Connecticut
18. South Dakota
19. District of Columbia*
20. Kansas
21. Alabama
22. South Carolina
23. Nebraska
24. Oregon
25. West Virginia
26. Wyoming
27. Montana
28. Alaska
29. Mississippi
30. Virginia
31. Kentucky
32. North Dakota
33. New Mexico
34. Oklahoma
35. New York
36. Rhode Island
37. Maryland
38. Utah
39. Indiana
40. Ohio
41. New Jersey
42. Massachusetts
43. Nevada
44. North Carolina
45. Pennsylvania
46. Arizona
47. Georgia
48. Michigan
49. California
50. Illinois

* Washington, D.C. is its own U-Haul territory and is listed among states for migration purposes. Hawaii is not included since state-to-state truck rentals are not applicable.

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