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Reasons to Head South

… and not just for the winter.

For the past four decades, the U.S. population has been gravitating from North to South. There are dozens of reasons for the long-term shift, but just a few factors seem to account for the majority of the movement. What’s the attraction of the lower half of the states for those who reside above the midline? For most, it’s probably a combination of factors.

Some seem to be related to the generally milder weather in the South, a growing choice of excellent colleges, a more laid-back lifestyle, a lower cost of living and a less congested population. Sure, there are urban centers and big cities in the South as well as in the North, but on average, the South’s cities and states are not as densely populated as their Northern counterparts. Here are some of the factors that lead people to relocate to the Southern U.S.


It’s a known fact that even with some of the severe weather events that occur in the Southern half of the U.S., the region generally offers much more pleasant climatic conditions than in the North. Some of the nation’s most visited vacation spots, beaches, theme parks and landmarks are in places like Florida, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama and other nearby states. Miami is famous for its clear water and white sand beachfronts, and Orlando is one of the world’s most popular destinations for families who want to spend a few days at Disney World. These locations are also home to some of the best islands in the South. Texas, Alabama, and Louisiana also boast famous beaches and fishing resorts.


Rice, Emory, Baylor and Auburn are four of the country’s most esteemed educational institutions. But the South also offers hundreds of top-ranked grade and high schools. The region also leads the way in the homeschool movement, a trend that is helping families choose what their children learn. Getting a college degree and paying for it are achievable goals for Southern residents who want to stay close to home while earning their advanced degrees. Millions of diploma seekers take out student loans to cover some or all of the expenses associated with earning a degree. Prospective attendees often turn to Earnest private student loans for an easy application process and competitive terms and rates.

Lifestyles and Lower Population Density

Beaufort is a charming small town in South Caroina.

The pace of life is more relaxed in the South than in the North, particularly when compared to East Coast culture. Additionally, even though some cities in states like Florida and Texas are quite populous, the overall population density is much lower than it is on both the East and West coasts. It’s telling that when motion picture directors want to depict places with slower-paced lifestyles and more relaxed attitudes, they routinely use Southern locations. The same is true in literature, TV production and other forms of entertainment. The South is known for its non-rushed pace and more serene attitude toward life.

Lower Cost of Living

One of the reasons so many college grads head to cities like Orlando, Birmingham, Houston, Montgomery, Atlanta and Tampa is related to a generally lower cost of living. Compared to population centers in the North, like New York City, Chicago and Philadelphia, most of the South’s major metro areas feature significantly lower living expenses. In nearly every category, consumers spend less on the same goods and services in the South than they do when residing in a Northern town or city. You can test the rule by checking real estate and vehicle prices online, comparing cities like Atlanta to ones like New York City or Detroit. In almost every case, you’ll discover that prices are lower in the Southern part of the nation.

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