• The majority of households moving to Chicago are non-family households.
  • Stats from moving companies are not accurate population growth indicators.
  • In the past five years, 45 percent of those moving to Houston were families.

Houston and Chicago were recently named the 7th and tenth top moving destinations for 2015 by a Penske Truck Rental Report.


This would appear to be good news for both metros; however, the ranking is somewhat deceiving and doesn’t speak to the economical situations in either metro.

In Houston job growth in 2016 is expected to reach roughly 22,000 jobs, following a down 2015 when job growth creation hit around 23,000.

In the Chicagoland area minimal population growth is occurring, according to Michael Golden, co-founder of @properties, adding the majority of growth is stemming from non-family households moving to the city of Chicago.



While the metro cracked Penske’s top 10, it was also recently cited by a U-Haul study as a market that has the same percentage of one-way truck rental customers coming into and out of the city. Illinois as a whole was recently mentioned by United Van Lines as a top state for outbound rentals.

Forbes doesn’t think highly of Chicago, as the metro recently ranked 40th on its list of next boom towns. The source pointed to the metro’s low job and population growth, along with stagnant incomes and strong out-migration.

Of those moving into Chicago, an estimated 96 percent from 2009 to 2014 were non-family households – singles or people living together that are not related or married, according to U.S. Census American Community Survey data.

Stats from moving companies only account for number of truck rentals not who is renting, thus they’re not always accurate population growth indicators.



H-town made it to no. 7 on Penske’s top destination list, but is considered a question mark metro for sources like Forbes, which points to forecasts that call for 9,000 energy sector layoffs this year.

Unlike Chicago, a number of families are relocating to Houston. According to the Census Bureau, of the households that moved to the city during a five-year span, roughly 45 percent were families. This suggests more notable population growth is occurring.

Email Erik Pisor

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