A new U.S. Census report is in, and everyone who flocked to The Sunshine State in search of greener pastures during the pandemic have made things official. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Florida was the fastest growing state in the country from July 1, 2021 to July 1, 2022. During that 12-month span, its population grew 1.9% to an estimated 22,244,823 residents.
“While Florida has often been among the largest-gaining states, this was the first time since 1957 that Florida has been the state with the largest percent increase in population,” Kristie Wilder, a demographer in the population division of the Census Bureau, said in a statement.
Florida has the third largest population in the country. Texas, the second largest, had a population increase of 1.6% (30,029,572) during the same one-year period. Although California is still our most populous state, the number of residents actually declined .3% to 39,029,342.
The pandemic changed people’s minds about a lot of things, but perhaps one of the biggest realizations is that space is precious. Americans moved away from bigger, pricier cities (New York and Illinois both saw less than 1% population decreases during the July to July period) and spent that money on fancy homes with more room to spread out. More remote western states — like Idaho, Montana and South Dakota — saw some of the biggest population increases, and people in search of warmer pastures also flocked to states like South Carolina.
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