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Census: Fewer Americans looking to move

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Fewer Americans are looking for a new address than they were a decade ago, the Census Bureau said Thursday.

New data showed more than 1 in 10 Americans moved between 2012 and 2013 because of job-, family- or housing reasons. More than 35 million Americans changed residences, meaning that 11.7 percent of the country over the age of 1 had a new address during that time period.

But the last time they asked, the Census Bureau found more than 42 million people found a new home between 1998 and 1999, a mover rate of 15.9 percent.

Both times, the most popular answer to why people wanted to move was because of housing and family. In 2013, 45 percent of those who moved said they moved because they "wanted a new or better home/apartment," ''other housing reason" or "other family reason." In 1999, 43.5 percent gave those same three reasons.

There is usually more than one factor to why people move, said the report's author, David Ihrke, a demographer in the Census Bureau's Journey to Work and Migration Statistics Branch. "We asked people to select the reason that contributed most to their decision to move. Picking one reason can be difficult, as moves are often motivated by many different, and oftentimes competing, factors," Ihrke said.

The Census Bureau also found:

—More women moved than men, with 18.3 million women moving and 17 million men moving. More men said they moved because of a job than women —20.4 percent vs. 18.5 percent.

—More than half of blacks — 52.7 percent — moved because of housing reasons, the highest rate for any race. Latinos moved more because of family reasons — 31.7 percent — than any other race or ethnicity, and Asians — 28.3 percent — moved more for job-related reasons.

—More people moved within a few miles of their current addresses — 23 million stayed within their counties, while 11 million moved away. Of those who moved out-of-county, most still stayed nearby. More than 4 million moved less than 50 miles away from where they started.

—Single people moved more than anyone else. More than 12 million people who had never been married moved between 2012 and 2013, compared with the 9.9 million married people who moved and the 3 million divorced people who decided to seek a new address.

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Follow Jesse J. Holland on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/jessejholland

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