NYC relocations accelerating at ‘substantial’ pace, local movers say

Real estate market is booming in the suburbs of NYC

Competition for a home outside of New York City has grown fierce as families struggle to flee the city and get space in the suburbs.

Even though the number of confirmed coronavirus cases has declined in the past few weeks, moving companies say they continue to be inundated with requests from people leaving New York City.

For example, Apple-based moving company Oz Moving told FOX Business that moving volumes continue to grow at a “significant rate” – in addition to a “drastic” increase in inventory compared to previous years.

The company saw an average year-over-year increase in requests for quotations of 30 percent.

By July 15, Oz Moving was busy for the remainder of the month, and while summer is always full, 2020 marked the first time in 27 years that the company couldn’t take additional jobs this early.


Similarly, Ross Sapir, president of Roadway Moving, told FOX Business that it was the busiest summer he has ever had.

“Insanely busy and we haven’t been able to keep up with demand for the past 3 months,” said Sapir.

To accommodate moving companies that have already left Manhattan, Oz Moving recently even introduced an “out of office move” that employees can perform when residents are away from their homes.

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The company said it was quickly becoming one of its most sought-after services.

Both Roadway Moving and Oz Moving told FOX Business in May that the pandemic was booming business in New York City and described a panicked flight out of the densely populated subway.

Both continue to describe an exodus, and other statistics confirm an increased interest in leaving.

According to the latest data from United Van Lines, interest in moving out of Manhattan between May and July rose 95 percent year over year. This corresponds to a 19 percent increase in US relocation interest.

The top destinations for people who moved out of New York City between March and August were Florida and California – together 28 percent of the moves. Texas and North Carolina accounted for 16 percent of the moves.

New York Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo joked during a press conference recently that he bribed his friends to return to Manhattan with the promise of free dinner and drinks.


“We’re trying to get people to come back,” said Cuomo. “You’re not coming back right now.”

Still, some local real estate experts say the perception of the problem may be exaggerated.

Lindsay Barton Barrett, a real estate agent at Douglas Elliman, told FOX Business that some of the data and stories are skewed by the fact that face-to-face screenings only recently resumed in Manhattan, while they were allowed weeks earlier in other areas.

“The reality is that in New York there are always people selling their houses and going,” Barrett said. “There are certain market sectors that are still active and other market sectors that are on hold.”

Barrett noted that some people may have temporarily left town – with plans to return – which explains a dramatic increase in storage requests.

As previously reported by FOX Business, the reopening of schools is an important factor in the recovery of Manhattan real estate. Parents often move to be closer to their children’s school.


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