Moving to a new state comes with plenty of challenges. One of the biggest ones in determining whether or not it is the right place for you. The article features the best and worst things about living in Florida.
Is Florida a good place to live? The answer depends on the things that are important to you. The Sunshine State is known for its beautiful beaches, amazing climate, and diverse wildlife. There are plenty of theme parks and the state has no income tax.
Whether you are an expat or local citizen, living in Florida comes with plenty of benefits. The cost of living is fair, and it is easy to afford insurance and mortgage. It is the third fastest-growing state in the United States. This, however, does not mean that there are no disadvantages to living in the state. This article features information that may help you determine whether Florida is the right state for you and your family.
Is Florida a Good Place to Live?
Florida is the southernmost state in the United States. It is popular for its amazing tropical climate, diverse population, and attractions. It is not a uniform state. There are many varied towns and it is easy to find one that works for you. Some of the best cities to live in Florida include; Venice, Tampa, Spring Hill, Parkland, and Jacksonville. It generally has a touristy feel and most of the attractions are unique.
Even though Florida is not the cheapest state to live in, its cost of living is fair. In 2018, the Council for Community; Economic Research conducted a survey. According to the survey, Florida is the 10th most affordable state in the country.
The cost of living in Florida changes depending on the part you live in. However, most of the best cities to live in Florida are affordable. The State can be a good destination regardless of whether you are an expat, retiree, or family person. The prices of mortgage, insurance, groceries, and transportation are average. The biggest contributor to the state’s cost of living in Florida is housing.
There are many pleasant neighborhoods in Florida. One of them is Westchase. The neighborhood is family-friendly and it has a suburban feel. There are plenty of good public schools and the nightlife is amazing. It is a diverse neighborhood and most of the residents own their homes.
The median home value is $326, 400 and the median rent is $1,375. There are plenty of employment opportunities close to Westchase. Some of the most popular places to work include; Creative Sign Designs and
Atlas Professional Services. The average household income is $91, 634. The best public schools in the neighborhood include; Brooks DeBartolo Collegiate High School, Walker Middle Magnet School, and Terrace Community Middle School. 36% of the population has a bachelor’s degree.
Nocatee is another amazing neighborhood in Florida. The crime rates are low and the neighborhood is generally clean. There are plenty of playgrounds, sidewalks, and green space. There are lots of shopping options and there is a mall just 25 minutes away. It is an amazing place to raise a family. 80% of residents in Nocatee own their homes and only 20% of the rent.
The median household income is $114, 048 and some of the best places to work include Zone Cheer All-Stars and Navitas Credit Corp. The median home value is $358, 600 and the median rent is $1,692. Public schools covering the neighborhood include; Ponte Vedra High School, Alice B. Landrum Middle School, Valley Ridge Academy, and Ocean Palms Elementary School. 35% of the population has a bachelor’s degree.
Some of the worst neighborhoods include; Lauderdale Lakes, Daytona Beach, Palatka, and Putnam County. The state’s crime rate is low and it continues to go lower over the years. Getting around the state is easy. The primary interstate routes include; I-4. I-10, I-75, and I-95. There are 131 public airports. Institutions of higher learning include; the University of Central Florida and Stetson University.
There are many opportunities to meet people and socialize in Florida. The State has a lot of festivals and events at all times of the year.
Living in Florida
- The Climate is Pleasant – Florida is a great place to live if you enjoy outdoor activities. The climate is tempered as no part of the state is far from the ocean. At the North of Lake Okeechobee, the climate is humid tropical. It is a true tropical climate south of the lake.
- There is no State Income Tax – Living in Florida, you only have to deal with federal taxes. This makes it a great place to live and work.
- Theme Parks – There are plenty of theme parks in Florida. They include Universal Studios, Disney, and Busch Grades. They are great for having fun with your family.
- Outdoor Sports – The state has many high-quality facilities for outdoor sports. Some of the most popular games include golf and tennis.
- Diverse Population – The state has a mixed population. You can fit in regardless of your age or ethnic background.
- Plenty of Beaches – Florida has many world-class beaches. You can access one even if you live inland.
- The Animal Life – Florida is home to diverse wildlife including exotic animals
- The Greenery – There is plenty of green space in the state. This includes the parks, fields, and nature trails.
- The Cost of Housing – In most parts of Florida, you can buy a new home at relatively low prices.
- Water Activities – The weather and scenery of Florida make it great for activities such as swimming, sailing, and diving.
- It is Completely Flat – The state does not have any hills, valleys, or mountains. The terrain makes driving tedious.
- The Heat Can be Oppressive – In the summer months, the heat in Florida can be a bit too much. You have to rely on air conditioning.
- The Population is High – The population in Florida is very high. This places strain on the existing infrastructure and resources.
- It has a Touristy Feel – The feel in some parts of Florida such as Orlando can be too commercial and touristy.
- There is no Snow – If you enjoy the snow and snowy snows, Florida may not be the ideal state for you as it does not snow.
- Poor Driving Habits – Even though Florida has good roads, the drivers can be very unpleasant. Most of them are rude and have poor driving habits.
- Public Transport is Limited – Most Florida residents have no choice but to drive to their destinations. There is minimal service in most parts of the state.
- You Don’t Experience Different Seasons – If you like to watch as the different season’s change, you may not have that opportunity in Florida. In the winter, it simply gets less hot and humid.
- The Weather can be Terrible – Florida rains can get very heavy. Hurricanes and thunderstorms can be very destructive and disruptive.
- There aren’t Many Historical Landmarks – Even though there are a few notable historical landmarks, the state does not have many of them.
Is Florida a Good Place to Work?
If you are moving to Florida for work, you have many job opportunities. You can find a job in all industries. The average salary in the state is $58, 000. The most common job titles include; Operations Manager, Office Manager, Software Engineer, and Human Resource Manager. The average salary of an Operations Manager is $58,532. A Software Engineer’s average salary is $72,457, and a Human Resource manager earns $60,631.
The most popular industries in the state include; hospital, education, and healthcare. The biggest employers include; the State of Florida, the United States Army, and HCA, Inc. The average salary in the State of Florida is $37,763 and that of the United States Army is $70,000. HCA Inc. pays an average of $72,208.
The economy of Florida is one of the largest in the world. In 2018, the Gross State Product was about $1.0 trillion. It is one of the biggest economies in the United States. The state contributes up to five percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product. The country’s economy depends on a lot of industries. They include; healthcare research, tourism, international banking, education, commercial state travel, and construction.
In 2018, the unemployment rate of the state was 3.5%. It was the 18th lowest in the United States. Florida does not impose a personal income tax. This fact coupled with the low cost of living makes it a great place to work. The state has one of the highest personal incomes in the United States. The poverty rate was 14% in 2018 but it continues to reduce. It is a good place to start a business without fear of going into debt.
Is Florida a Good Place to Buy a House?
Winter Park is one of the most pleasant neighborhoods in Florida. It is easily accessible from plenty of public schools, entertainment areas, and shopping areas. The population is diverse and the nightlife is impressive. It is a great place to raise a family. The cost of housing is fair and you can easily find a good home.
Most residents of Winter Park own their homes. The median home value is $371,300 and the median rent is about $1,126. Some of the top public schools in the neighborhood include; Winter Park High School, Orlando Science Middle/High Charter School, and Audubon Park Elementary School.
The suburban neighborhood has a diverse population. The environment is clean and generally well-managed. The crime rate is low and there are lots of employment opportunities. You can easily find a good home with little credit.
Pinecrest is another amazing neighborhood. The average population of the neighborhood is 19, 441. The neighborhood is between US1 and Old Cutler road. It is beautiful and very easy to access. Over 70% of the residents own their homes. The median home value is $887,700 and the median rent is $1,319. It is a diverse community with a low crime rate and family-friendly entertainment.
Top public schools serving the community include; School for Advanced Studies-South, Mast Academy, and Archimedean Upper Conservatory.
Some of the least pleasant neighborhoods to buy a house include Palatka and Daytona Beach.
The average price of one-bedroom properties in Florida is $446,000. Three-bedroom properties cost about $700,000 and five-bedroom properties cost an average of $1,600,000.
The average cost of renting one-bedroom properties is $1,400 and renting three-bedroom properties is $1,800. Renting five-bedroom properties costs $2,450.
Is Florida a Good Place to Retire?
Moving to Florida for retirement is a good option. The climate is pleasant and it is great for outdoor and water activities. There are many opportunities to meet people and the neighborhoods are amazing.
One of the best neighborhoods in Florida is Lake Country. It is a laid- back, tight-knit community with a lot to offer. The housing is great and the nightlife is vibrant. The population is about 15, 886 and the median home value is $282, 700. The median rent is $1,560. 75% of the residents own their homes. The neighborhood is close to some amazing eateries and shopping centers. Living in Lake Country, you get a suburban feel while enjoying the benefits of big cities.
The neighborhood is popular because of its proximity to important amenities. You can walk to shopping centers, eateries, and some entertainment joints.
Palm Valley is another great neighborhood for retirement in Florida. It is a diverse suburban neighborhood with affordable housing and a vibrant neighborhood. The people are pleasant and it is close to plenty of amenities. The median home value is $430, 000 and the median rent is $1,244.
Carrollwood is a good neighborhood for retirement. Its population is 34, 747. The median home value is $211, 200 and the median rent is 1,091. 67% of the residents own their homes. The lifestyle is suburban but you get to enjoy all the benefits of living in a new city. The neighborhood is clean and there is plenty of green space. The rate of crime is low and you can easily access shopping and entertainment areas.
Buying one-bedroom properties for retirement costs an average of $400,000 while three-bedroom properties cost an average of $720, 000. Five- bedroom properties cost an average of $1, 480, 000. The cost of renting one-bedroom retirement properties is $1, 200.
Renting three-bedroom properties costs an average of $1,700 and five-bedroom properties cost $2,520.
Is Florida a Good Place to Visit?
Florida is one of the top tourist destinations in the United States. It is the home of Disney and other amazing theme parks. It has plenty of championship golf courses and the weather makes it great for outdoor activities.
If you like the sun and water activities, you have every reason to visit Florida. It has plenty of beautiful beaches, luxury stores, and quirky boutiques regardless of the city you choose to visit. The state has a rich historical background and the population is diverse. The diversity of the state has contributed greatly to its culinary scene.
Orlando is arguably the best place to live in Florida. It is the home of world-renown theme parks like Universal Studios, Walt Disney World, and SeaWorld.
Miami Beach is one of the most popular and vibrant beaches in the world. The architecture is beautiful and there are plenty of trendy restaurants and clubs nearby. Other attractions include; St. Petersburg, FL, Sarasota, Sanibel Island, and Key West.
About the author: Marta Kovachek is the author of this article. She graduated from the University of Chicago with a master’s degree in Economics. Marta enjoys writing about the current economic situation and loves helping our readers to find their next "destination". From places to live to complex social and economic topics, we always enjoy Marta's work. Please contact us in case of any questions.