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The United States is the third largest landmass of any country in the world. Indeed, Americans have options when deciding where to live. Variables such as topography, climate, tax code, and cost of living – in addition to proximity to family and friends – can all play a role.

These factors are somewhat subjective – some may prefer colder climate or a more rural environment, while others may prefer warmer climate in a bustling urban setting. Some U.S. cities, however, are demonstrably more attractive to new residents than others.

According to recent Census data, nearly a fifth of all states reported a population decline in the last two years. In many metro