Americans Are Moving to These 2 Southern Cities — and Both Have Stunning Beaches, Great Weather, and Low Cost of Living

According to a new report, a third of the top 20 communities people are moving to are in neighboring states.

<p>Gerry Fagan/Getty Images</p>

Gerry Fagan/Getty Images

Inflation and rising home prices are driving Americans out of the country's largest urban areas. A recent study found that in over half of the nation's largest cities, wages have not kept up with soaring real estate values, and, as a result, mortgages have become unaffordable for many residents.

So, it should come as no surprise that Americans are moving out of cities in search of affordable housing, lower crime rates, proximity to nature, and a lower cost of living in areas like Southern Appalachia.

A new survey by moving and storage company Pods found that many of the country's top 20 most popular destinations for relocation are focused in two states, South and North Carolina, with Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and Wilmington, North Carolina, tied for the first place.

"Four-season weather, southern charm, history, and dynamic arts, culture, food, and wine scenes are big draws, too. Residents can also look forward to a growing economy (particularly in North Carolina) and lower tax rates than many other U.S. states," the company noted.

Myrtle Beach has long been a favorite summer destination for vacationers, but thanks to its affordable housing prices, more and more Americans are calling it their permanent home. Similarly, Wilmington has transformed from a getaway spot to one of the most popular places to live in North Carolina, with an eclectic blend of history, recreation, and sound economic opportunities.

In both South Carolina and North Carolina, the cost of living is lower than the national average without compromising quality of life. Other popular cities in these two states are Greenville, North Carolina; Charlotte; and Raleigh; all of which ranked in the top 10 on Pods's list.

The report also highlighted Tennessee and Georgia as emerging destinations with new residents, with many moving from states like California, Florida, and Texas drawn to the mild climate, affordable living, and rich culture.

And speaking of the Sunshine State, South Florida's Miami metro area has the third highest number of move-outs, according to Pods's data, preceded by Los Angeles and San Francisco, which people are leaving due to rising crime and homelessness rates, cost of living, and higher rental rates.

Florida, in particular, is also becoming less attractive because of the high costs associated with homeownership, including rising insurance and repair costs from natural disasters related to climate change. A recent report found that Florida homeowners paid an average insurance premium of $10,996 in 2023, over $8,000 more than the national average.

You can see the full ranking of popular move-in communities on

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