Texas top destination for do-it-yourself moves

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Texas no. i for do it yourselfersCities in Texas took three of the top-10 spots for U-Haul destinations in 2009, according to the latest migration report by the moving van rental company and, while Bronx, NY was the top growth city, two Texas towns also made the top 10 for growth in do-it-yourself moves.

Houston was the most popular locale in all 50 states, followed by San Antonio in fourth place and Austin in sixth place, according to U-Haul. It's not only DIY-ers either, since mega-mover Atlas found Texas, along with neighboring New Mexico and Oklahoma, to be among its top destinations last year as well. And both come atop the mid-year U.S. Census estimates, showing Texas added more people between 2000 and 2008 than any other state: 3.9 million.

So what's the attraction? A lower-than-average unemployment rate and relatively low cost of housing seem to be the main motivators, according to various experts. The Texas Comptroller boasts on her state government agency Web site of a few other statistics behind some of the movement:

- The Tax Foundation ranks Texas 43rd among states for its state and local tax burden.
- Texas had the fifth-lowest cost of living among all states and the lowest among the 10 largest states in the third quarter of 2009, according to the Missouri Economic Research and information Center.
- Fortune magazine located 13 of the nation's 100 fastest-growing companies in Texas, second to California, with 15.
- A poll of CEOs by Chief Executive magazine chose Texas as the best state in which to do business -- for the fifth year in a row.

The U-Haul release ends with this somewhat frightening footnote: "Note to editors: The annual mileage of North American U-Haul trucks, trailers and tow dollies would move a family to the moon and back more than 20.5 times per day, every day of the year."

To eternity -- and beyond?
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