Dallas metro is top target for people moving to Texas

Report shows highest interest among potential movers around DFW

A photo illustration of the rapid growth in Dallas' metro population inflow (Getty)
A photo illustration of the rapid growth in Dallas' metro population inflow (Getty)

As the great Texas Migration continues, search data from a national moving company shows where in the state those incoming residents hope to land.

The Dallas-Fort Worth metro area is the big winner, according to a report from moveBuddha, which measured the number of people looking to move into each city versus moving out in the first half of 2022. Of the 20 Texas cities with the highest in-to-out ratios, eight of them were around DFW.

Only four were around Houston, and three near Austin, with one outside San Antonio and four that weren’t near any major metro.

Prosper, north of Dallas, had the highest ratio, with more than two and a half times as many people searching for a move to that city than residents looking to move away. The next two cities in the ranking were Winters, deep in the center of the state, and Mcallen, down on the border. No. 4 was the Austin suburb of Leander, and the DFW suburb of Euless rounded out the top five.

Some parts of Texas are seeing growing interest among potential relocators, according to the report, while others are starting to lose their shine.

Leander saw the biggest increase in interest with a 128.6 percent jump in its in-bound search ratio from 2021. Fort Worth marked a 71 percent increase and McKinney, north of Dallas, had a 62.6 percent rise, followed by Houston’s Sugar Land and Spring suburbs rounding out the top five with increases of 57 percent and 45.7 percent, respectively.

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Cities that are losing their luster include Houston’s Pearland, which experienced a 34.5 percent drop in interest from 2021, the DFW suburbs of Plano and Frisco, which had drops of 38 percent and 46.5 percent, respectively, and Austin’s Cedar Park, which saw a drop of more than 45 percent. But potential movers soured most on the capital city suburb of Round Rock, which suffered a nearly 104 percent plunge in its inbound search ratio over the past year, according to the report.

Despite some parts of the DFW metro area recently flipping to a buyer’s market at the high end, most parts of the North Texas market still have a limited inventory of more affordable homes. That tight inventory, coupled with persistent demand, has driven up home prices beyond what many locals can afford.

Homes on average across the DFW metro were about $501,000 as of March 22, according to the report, and some cities like Prosper have reached average home prices as high as $828,000 — a significant jump from just two years ago. But what’s unaffordable to locals can still look like a bargain to someone from out-of-state.

About 24 percent of all queries for moves to Texas in the first half of 2022 came from California, where home prices are even higher than in the Lone Star State.

“Looking purely at queries for moves into the most popular city, Prosper, 40% are from California,” said moveBuddha’s Kristen Klepac.

The average home price in comparable California cities is $1.2 million, she noted, while the average home price in Prosper is “only” $828,000 — a 44 percent discount.

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