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Income drop hamstrings those in former growth centers

Dropping personal incomes have prevented many people from moving.

Dropping personal incomes have prevented many people from moving.

New analysis shows that many of the fastest-growing areas during the housing boom have also seen a sharp drop in personal incomes that has prevented many residents from moving away.

According to Census data, there have been significant drops in income and employment opportunities in Florida, Arizona and Nevada during the recession - all areas that experienced rapid growth in the few prior years.

"As a whole, the income changes represent a sharp U-turn from the mid-decade gains," William H. Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution who reviewed the household income data, told the Associated Press. "The last two years have left those who couldn't move stuck in place with lower incomes."

The drop in incomes has affected residents across the country. However, a few cities nationwide - Washington, D.C., Boston, San Francisco and San Jose - have been largely insulated by the trend, due to a continuing demand for high-tech or government jobs.

Personal incomes have begun to recover, but are still below pre-recession levels in most states. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, during the second quarter of the year, only Maryland and Alaska had personal incomes above what they were during the recession without accounting for unemployment payments.