Bradenton ranked number 2 among U.S. cities for net growth

BRADENTON — In its recently released 2021-22 Mobile Migration Study, HireAHelper — a Porch Group PRCH company — found that Bradenton, Florida ranked second in the nation for overall net growth in 2021. According to the data analyzed in the report, more people moved to Bradenton than moved in 2021. is an online marketplace where consumers can compare service quotes from local movers to book a range of moving services, from full-service movers to hourly moving labor. The website service is like using a travel website to compare rates and book a hotel room, allowing users to make a reservation with independent regional providers in the moving and relocation industry. Each year, HireAHelper tracks the total number of outbound and inbound moves across the country and surveys those who have moved to better understand how Americans have moved over the past year.

The annual study sought to identify where the greatest population fluctuations have occurred and help explain how the pandemic has impacted work, money and family life in the United States over the past the most recent year.

The migration study revealed several interesting findings. Among the most notable nationally is the massive gain in moves to New York. In 2021, 86% more people moved to New York than left. However, the state of Florida saw 17% more people moving into the state than leaving it and was ranked seventh this year in net gains among the 50 states.

In terms of volume, Florida ranked first among all states, seeing the most people move in, overall. In fact, the study found that half of the top 10 cities with the largest net gains in 2021 were in Florida.

Graph of HireAHelper’s 2021-22 Mobile Migration Study

The Villages took the top spot among Florida cities, with three times as many people moving in as leaving, compared to the previous year. For Bradenton, who came in second, his ratio of in-to-out moves was around 2:1.

Other cities in the Sunshine State that made the top 10 were Fort Myers, Cape Coral and Saint Augustine.

The findings of the study were not limited to the analysis of characteristics comparing only state to state, but also examined the level of local and background movements compared to previous years – pre-pandemic – as well. although what made people move if they had. Overall, 2021, like 2020, has seen fewer people move anywhere in the United States compared to pre-pandemic years.

In a zoom interview with OTC, Miranda Marquit, chief data analyst at HireAHelper, said the moves their company was tracking in 2021 were less a response to the pandemic than a response to expanding work arrangements, like working from home and working from home. remote work. She also shared that on the whole, Americans who have moved have moved farther.

“For example, only about 8% of Americans moved in 2021, the lowest percentage on record according to the US Census Bureau,” Marquit explained, “But of those who moved, 17% moved to another state, even though 2021 saw the lowest percentage of Americans moving overall.”

In 2020 and 2021, the pandemic was cited as one of the main reasons people were moving.

“In 2020, about a quarter of Americans who moved did so because of financial hardship created by the pandemic, and another third moved because they needed to care for family,” Marquit said. “In our 2021 study, 37% of COVID-related moves were due to people having a choice of where they wanted to live because the ability to work remotely had changed.”

The study found that although the pandemic played a role in relocations in 2020 and 2021, the motivations for the moves were a bit different. More people who moved in 2021 did so by choice.

The Big Quit came to light in the study as 19% of Americans who moved in 2021 blamed the pandemic for causing them to reassess their priorities and quit their current job.
The study also revealed other interesting information, including:

Results related to the pandemic

• 37% of COVID-related moves were people starting to work remotely

• Up to 35% said they moved because of buying (12%) or selling a home (23%) in an advantageous market due to the pandemic

• One in five (20%) who moved because of COVID did so because they could not afford housing

Top Mobile Trends

• Only one in 12 Americans (8%) moved in 2021, the lowest percentage on record, according to the US Census Bureau

• 17% of Americans who moved went to another state, the highest percentage since 2015

It’s no secret to Bradenton residents that traffic in the area has increased, housing (especially affordable housing) has become more limited, and overall everything feels more crowded. The pressure on the small-big city is evident, especially for those who have called Bradenton their home for years.
Area real estate brokerage, Florida Suncoast Real Estate, was recently awarded Small Business of the Year 2021 by the Manatee Chamber of Commerce. OTC contacted by e-mail at local real estate agent Troy Kemna, Florida Suncoast Real Estate’s largest producer, for his reaction to the results of HireAHelper’s annual Migration Study.

Kemna surmised that the report’s findings are unlikely to come as a complete shock to most people in the area.

“In fact, I think it will serve to solidify what local residents – and especially real estate agents – have been going through for the past few years,” he said.

Referring to the current state of the local real estate market, Kemna added: “For this area it’s quite simple, it comes down to supply and demand.” As HireAHelper’s study showed, more people move to Bradenton than move, “which of course,” Kemna pointed out, “impacts both supply and demand.”

Bradenton residents are unlikely to wonder why more people are choosing to move to Bradenton. There are obvious draws, not the least of which is Bradenton’s proximity to Anna Maria Island and its world-famous beaches. However, some residents may not be aware that the cost of living in Bradenton is 3% lower than the national average, which could certainly help a person decide to move to the “Friendly City”.
According to the data available on, Bradenton’s overall cost of living is lower than the national average, with most of the savings being in the cost of utilities. shows that the cost of housing in the area is only slightly above the national average – about 2% – which may seem low to Bradenton residents who rent or have seen the average list price of single-family homes. Depending on what Bradenton and surrounding areas will see in the coming years – in terms of population growth and supply and demand – evidence suggests that the local cost of housing will continue its upward trend.

It’s not uncommon these days to see posts from residents looking for leads on an “almost reasonable” rental on NextDoor or a Facebook community group dedicated to an area of ​​Manatee County. Posts shared stories of residents’ dismay at landlords raising rents by $400, $600 or even $800 a month upon lease renewal.

According to Data provided by the site, city-level rent estimates for Bradenton from March 2020 to January 2022 show an increase in the average apartment rent of 53%. In January 2021, the average rental price for an apartment in Bradenton was $1,300, but by January 2022 it had risen to nearly $1,900.

Graph from Growth in rents at the city level from March 2020 to January 2022

Many of the area’s home buyers are finding their higher-end offers being outbid by cash buyers. Some of this competition comes from newcomers to the area, but, more often than not, these are institutional investors looking to add to their property or rental portfolios, or individual investors looking to convert a family home for vacation rental.

The rising cost of housing leaves many residents, especially renters or those hoping to buy a home, with few options they can afford.

“The pandemic has slowed the construction of new homes with building material shortages and skyrocketing costs,” Kemna said of other factors that have impacted home supply and availability. “Out-of-state investors are buying properties at higher prices to use as Airbnbs or as short-term rentals, making it seemingly impossible for local labor to compete in buying or renting “, did he declare. Kemna suspects that 2022 will continue to be a lucrative real estate market for sellers, while buyers will continue to find it difficult.

In his 2021 Manatee County Single Family Homes Market Detail, REALTOR® Association of Sarasota and Manatee (RASM) reports that 35% of single-detached home purchases in Manatee County were made with cash, an increase of nearly 40% over the previous year. The median sale price for single-family homes in Manatee County was $420,000, up nearly 22% from the median sale price a year earlier.
Chart from REALTOR® Association of Sarasota/Manatee-2021 Manatee County Single Family Home Market Detail

The 2021 RASM report shows that in Manatee County, for the first time since 2016, homes listed for sale sold at 100% of their listing, or more.

While correlation doesn’t equal causation, it’s hard to imagine that Florida’s growth in recent years – and in particular Bradenton’s, as HireAHelper’s mobile migration study showed in 2021 – may not have at least a partial influence on Bradenton and the surrounding area’s housing supply. and the overall cost of living.

The question that remained in Kemna’s mind after reviewing the study was, “How will Bradenton and Manatee County cope with all the added pressure? Transportation, infrastructure, zoning, and density of population will create inherent challenges for the future.”

Kemna – citing an example of policy change that can be adopted by local governments – noted the recent vacation ordinance passed by Bradenton City Council. Kemna suggested such an order could help level the playing field between investors and local buyers.

To access HireAHelper’s 2021 Migration Study and all of its findings, visit: .

Dawn Kitterman is a reporter for the Bradenton Times. She covers local government and entertainment news. She can be reached at [email protected]

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