Millions of Americans moved during the pandemic — and most aren't looking back

The top destination cities as of October and November were Sacramento, California; Las Vegas; Phoenix; Austin, Texas; and Atlanta, according to the real estate site Redfin. Interest is particularly high for Austin, where double the number of people moved this year compared to last year.

The main driver is that people want more space, prompting higher sales of luxury, suburban and rural homes, said Daryl Fairweather, chief economist at Redfin.

“It’s a K-shaped recovery. Wealthy people are doing well, and more affluent people are more able to work remotely,” Fairweather said.

Buyers are seeking more affordable homes and yard space for their families, home offices for parents, designated areas for remote learning for their children and, with some gyms closed or customers wary of re-entering, their own workout spaces.