The premise of the 1960s sitcom, Green Acres, was a riches-to-rags tale of Manhattan lawyer Oliver Wendall Homes escaping city slicker life for farm livin’.
You’d think this would go over today — that a pandemic would cause urbanites to put big-city density behind them for land spreadin’ out so far and wide.
Not so much.
A new study by LendingTree Inc. reveals that few people are migrating to Hooterville or smaller towns. According to the study, only 1.56 percent of Dallas-area homeowners have left to buy homes in smaller towns.
It’s similar to a national trend. In 2019, an average of 1.91 percent of homeowners who lived in one of the nation’s 50 largest cities moved to a smaller town. In 2020, the share grew to 2.18 percent. LendingTree looked at the share of homeowners who lived in one of the nation’s largest cities and moved to a new home in one of the country’s towns.
In other Texas markets, the numbers were also small: 1.52 percent from Austin, 1.41 percent from San Antonio, and 1.05 percent from Houston.
Of those leaving Dallas, the most popular destination is no Hooterville. It’s Corsicana, as 11.95 percent of those moving out of Dallas presumably want to be closer to Collin Street Bakery fruitcakes.
According to the data, the majority of homeowners moved to a different home in the same city or moved to an entirely different city. An average of 84 percent of homeowners stayed in the same city when they moved compared to nearly 16 percent who left for another city.
Another study backed LendingTree’s findings. According to recent U.S. Census Bureau national data regarding pandemic-related moves, growth to rural non-metro areas have declined, hinting that while movers want more space, they also wanted common in-town amenities.
No doubt Drucker’s General Store just isn’t enough.