10 Things You Need to Know Before Moving to Florida
Are you considering a move to Florida? It seems like everyone is flocking to the sunshine state these days. Here's what makes living in Florida so irresistible!
Florida, with a population of 21 million people, holds the third spot among the most populous states in the United States. Situated in the southeastern region of the country, Florida is surrounded by the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.
The state boasts a thriving economy, primarily driven by tourism, transportation, and agriculture, ranking fourth in the nation. Florida's appeal stems from its stunning beaches, pleasant climate, and status as a sought-after destination for retirees.
While the thought of relocating to a new state like Florida might be daunting, we're here to assist you by providing all the essential information to ensure your move is as stress-free as possible. We'll also guide you through the best places to call home in the Sunshine State!
So, let's jump right in and discover why Florida is the perfect place to make your home!
Beautiful Beaches in Florida
What could be more delightful than basking in the warm summer sun on the pristine white sands of Florida's beaches? Nothing compares to that.
Florida, renowned for its extensive coastline, offers an abundance of breathtaking beaches that will captivate your senses. Picture yourself lounging in a beach chair, soaking up the sun, and embracing the coastal beauty.
Living in Florida grants you unparalleled access to some of the finest beaches in the entire country! Here are just a few of the top-notch beaches in Florida that you must explore:
Sanibel Island - Located on the serene west coast, this beach is a treasure trove for seashell enthusiasts and provides an idyllic setting to wade in the inviting waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
Siesta Key - Celebrated for its mesmerizing quartz sand and crystal-clear turquoise waters, Siesta Key has rightfully earned its place as one of the nation's premier beaches, beckoning you to experience its island paradise.
South Beach - Situated in vibrant Miami, this internationally acclaimed beach is renowned for its vibrant nightlife and upscale shopping, offering a dynamic blend of leisure and luxury.
Clearwater Beach - A recipient of the accolade for one of America's finest white sand beaches, Clearwater Beach boasts calm waters that attract countless visitors year-round, inviting them to partake in exhilarating activities such as parasailing and paddleboarding.
- Naples - Prepare to be enchanted by Naples, where you can relish awe-inspiring sunsets, indulge in world-class fishing, play on top-notch golf courses, and encounter a wealth of fascinating wildlife.
The allure of these remarkable beaches is a significant driving force behind the influx of people relocating to Florida.
The Cost of Living in Florida
Florida stands as one of the premier vacation destinations in the entire country, capturing the hearts of visitors from near and far.
What's more, this sunshine state can also offer affordability, making it an attractive choice for those seeking an affordable place to call home.
If you find yourself wondering about the cost of living in Florida, rest assured that it remains 1% lower than the national average, according to the reliable cost of living index.
However, it's essential to note that the vastness of the state means that the cost of living can vary depending on the specific city you choose to reside in. Some cities in Florida may fall below or exceed the national average in terms of expenses.
Thus, when considering a move, it becomes imperative to explore the most budget-friendly places to settle down in Florida. By doing so, you can ensure that your relocation journey is both financially sound and satisfying.
Once you've made the decision to move, it's crucial to allocate sufficient funds to cover the expenses associated with the relocation process.
For instance, if you're moving from a city like New York, it's advisable to budget around $1,700 to $3,000 to facilitate your move to Florida.
Many individuals and families who are flocking to Florida are embarking on lengthy journeys to escape the cold weather and high cost of living prevalent in the northern regions.
Florida beckons as a warm and affordable haven that promises a higher quality of life without breaking the bank.
So, if you're seeking a state that combines the allure of a top vacation destination with affordable living options, look no further than Florida.
Its diverse cities offer a range of possibilities to suit varying budgets, ensuring that you can find a place to call home while enjoying the sunshine, natural beauty, and vibrant lifestyle that the state has to offer.
Real Estate in Florida
These six cities are widely regarded as some of the most budget-friendly destinations within the state of Florida, making them a significant draw for those seeking a new place to call home.
The appeal of these cities is a driving force behind the increasing number of individuals and families choosing to make Florida their ultimate destination.
Investing in real estate in Florida holds immense potential and advantages. The state's high population translates to a substantial demand for housing, creating a favorable market for real estate investors.
However, it's important to note that housing prices in southern Florida tend to be slightly higher compared to other regions of the state. Nevertheless, the diverse architectural styles available cater to every individual's preferences and requirements.
Whether you envision a luxurious Spanish-style mansion by the beach or a cozy condominium nestled near a marina, Florida offers an array of housing options to suit your needs and desires.
As a top retirement destination, Florida boasts a multitude of gated communities and retirement homes, ensuring that everyone can find their perfect haven within this tropical oasis.
The beauty of Florida's homes is unparalleled, with many properties boasting stunning waterfront locations and the added luxury of private pools.
Living in Florida means you'll have the opportunity to embrace the essence of the state by having easy access to water, allowing you to cool off and enjoy the refreshing embrace of the sparkling waves during the hot summer months.
Let us guide you on your journey to finding your dream home in Florida's captivating landscape. With a wide selection of real estate options and the chance to experience the utmost beauty and tranquility, you'll soon discover that Florida truly offers the perfect place to call home.
West Coast Vs East Coast
When you make the move to Florida, you'll quickly discover that the east coast and west coast offer distinctive experiences that are worth exploring. It's essential to consider both sides of the state to fully immerse yourself in the unique charms they each possess.
The east coast of Florida boasts a stunning border along the Atlantic Ocean, while the west coast stretches along the Gulf of Mexico. Understanding the migration patterns can provide insights into the preferences of different regions of the United States.
Northeasterners often gravitate towards the east coast, particularly areas like Palm Coast or Miami. The allure of vibrant cities and coastal living draws them to this side of the state.
Conversely, those from the southern or midwestern parts of the United States tend to head west, lured by the magnetic appeal of the west coast.
Each coast offers its own distinct vibe and allure, which should be taken into consideration when deciding which coast to call home.
The west coast of Florida is renowned for its warm Gulf waters and pristine white sandy beaches. Clearwater Beach serves as a shining example, boasting turquoise waters and glistening quartz sand.
This side of the state typically offers less traffic, a more relaxed atmosphere, and wide-open beaches waiting to be explored. Beach towns along the west coast exude a family-oriented ambiance, making them perfect for creating lasting memories.
Naples, Tampa, Sarasota, and Sanibel Island are just a few of the luxurious areas situated on the west coast, promising a lifestyle of refinement and indulgence.
In contrast, the east coast of Florida has a vibrant, bustling energy reminiscent of a big city. There's always something happening, ensuring you'll never run out of things to do or events to attend.
Miami stands out as the beacon of the east coast, offering a myriad of opportunities for entertainment, recreation, and cultural experiences.
From basking in the glorious sunshine and enjoying the beaches to partaking in thrilling water sports, attending sporting events, immersing yourself in festivals, relishing high-class entertainment, and indulging in amazing shopping escapades, the east coast of Florida caters to a dynamic, fast-paced lifestyle.
This area is characterized by a skyline dotted with high-rise apartments and is a melting pot of international residents and visitors, adding to its cosmopolitan charm.
So, whether you're drawn to the laid-back allure of the west coast or the vibrant energy of the east coast, exploring both sides of Florida will offer a comprehensive experience of the Sunshine State's distinct coastal regions.
It's an opportunity to discover which coast aligns perfectly with your desired lifestyle and preferences, ensuring that your new home in Florida becomes a haven that suits your every need.
North Florida Vs South Florida
While the east and west coasts of Florida showcase notable differences, the contrast between the northern and southern regions of the state is even more pronounced, to the point that they could almost feel like separate states.
Southern Florida, encompassing cities such as Miami, boasts a warmer climate and is heavily influenced by Latin American and Caribbean cultures. With a significant population of residents from South America, the region's cultural diversity is evident and celebrated.
Southern Florida is also renowned for its vibrant nightlife scene, particularly in the bustling Miami area, which we'll delve into further in the next section. Those residing in South Florida can truly attest to the unique charm and character it exudes.
On the other hand, North Florida experiences a milder climate that can even witness occasional snowfall. If you're relocating to this part of the state, it's wise to pack your sweaters and jackets to prepare for cooler temperatures.
The state capital, Tallahassee, calls North Florida home, along with the presence of Florida State University. As you journey further north, you'll encounter a stronger influence of Southern traditions, reflected in elements such as barbecue cuisine and country music.
Cities like Jacksonville offer a distinct experience, with temperatures that don't reach the same scorching levels as their southern counterparts like Miami.
When considering a move to Florida, it's important to determine whether living in the northern or southern part of the state aligns best with your preferences and lifestyle.
Deciding between North and South Florida will ultimately hinge on your desired climate, cultural influences, and the atmosphere that resonates with you.
Both regions have their own unique offerings and appeal, presenting distinct opportunities to discover the diverse facets of the Sunshine State.
If you have children attending school or if you're considering pursuing higher education yourself, Florida boasts an exceptional educational system with renowned school districts and esteemed universities.
The state prides itself on offering a wide range of educational options, including both public schools and private institutions.
With approximately 3 million students currently enrolled in the 4,269 public and private schools across Florida, you can be confident in finding educational opportunities that meet your needs.
Florida has made remarkable progress in improving high school graduation rates and was ranked second in the nation for this achievement. St. Johns County, located in St. Augustine, holds the distinction of being the top school district in the state.
If you have school-age children and are planning to enroll them in a school district, it's advisable to conduct thorough research on the different districts to ensure you make an informed decision that aligns with your educational priorities.
For higher education, Florida offers a robust system of 28 community and state colleges within the Florida College System. These institutions provide diverse pathways for students seeking further education beyond high school.
Notably, the University of Central Florida stands as the largest university in terms of enrollment, with over 64,000 students enrolled in 2017.
Florida is also home to several prestigious state universities, including Florida A&M University, Florida Atlantic University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida International University, Florida Polytechnic University, Florida State University, New College of Florida, the University of Central Florida, the University of Florida, the University of North Florida, the University of South Florida, and the University of West Florida.
These esteemed universities offer a wide range of academic disciplines, ensuring that students have ample opportunities to pursue their desired fields of study.
Whether you're interested in STEM fields, liberal arts, business, or the humanities, Florida's universities provide a solid foundation for a quality education.
With its strong emphasis on education and an abundance of prestigious institutions, Florida sets the stage for students of all ages to thrive academically and pursue their aspirations.
No State Income Tax in Florida
Indeed, it's true that Florida stands out among the few states in the U.S. that does not impose a state income tax. This absence of state income tax serves as a compelling reason for individuals and businesses to consider making the move to Florida.
Living in a state without income tax can offer significant advantages, particularly for high earners, as it allows them to retain a larger portion of their income. This increased savings potential empowers individuals to allocate their funds in various ways.
The freedom from state income tax means that residents have more financial flexibility, enabling them to spend their money on experiences and investments.
Whether it's exploring the vibrant attractions and natural wonders of Florida or fulfilling the dream of owning a beach house, the money saved from not paying state income tax can be utilized in countless ways.
This financial advantage contributes to the overall appeal of Florida as a destination and reinforces the allure of the sunshine state.
The absence of state income tax in Florida has become a significant factor driving the migration of individuals and families to the state.
It offers an enticing opportunity to maximize earnings and enjoy a higher quality of life without the burden of state income tax deductions.
Florida's unique tax policy serves as a catalyst for growth, attracting both residents and businesses who appreciate the financial benefits and the opportunities it creates.
Florida is famous for its love and fascination with alligators, so much so that the University of Florida proudly boasts an alligator as its mascot. However, the state is home to a diverse array of unique wildlife beyond just the gators.
While news headlines may occasionally highlight encounters with snakes, alligators, and sharks, it's important to remember that Florida is teeming with a rich variety of wildlife species.
Among the notable animals that inhabit the state, wild boars, Florida panthers, jellyfish, fire ants, and even some venomous snakes are present.
When enjoying outdoor activities, particularly swimming in the ocean or near bodies of water, it's crucial to remain aware of your surroundings and exercise caution.
Keep in mind that alligators are known to inhabit ponds within Florida's golf courses, making the occasional appearance.
In addition to these more well-known creatures, Florida is also home to an abundance of fascinating mammals.
Bears, raccoons, bobcats, otters, beavers, bats, foxes, deer, and manatees are just a few examples of the diverse mammal population found throughout the state.
Among them, the manatee holds a special place as Florida's most beloved mammal. These gentle giants, also known as sea cows, are peaceful and slow-moving creatures.
Often seen leisurely feasting on seagrass and algae, manatees are known for their friendly nature. When kayaking through the intricate mangroves, it's not uncommon to encounter these magnificent creatures swimming up to greet you.
When it comes to world-famous attractions, nothing quite compares to the magic of Disney World, which calls Orlando, Florida its home.
It's a destination that captures the hearts of both children and the young at heart. Living in close proximity to this iconic theme park offers an incredible advantage, especially if you have children or enjoy immersing yourself in a world of enchantment.
The convenience of being just a short distance away means you can easily access the park during the off-season, avoiding large crowds and shorter wait times.
You can spontaneously decide to spend a day at Epcot or Magic Kingdom without the need for extensive trip planning months in advance.
Additionally, you can enjoy a relaxing dinner or indulge in some shopping at Disney Springs on a quiet weeknight.
As a Florida resident, you can also take advantage of reduced ticket prices, adding even more excitement to the prospect of living close to the magic.
But the allure of Florida's theme parks doesn't stop at Disney World alone. Universal Orlando and SeaWorld also reside within the state, offering a wealth of fun and entertainment.
Imagine having the opportunity to experience the wonders of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter or embark on thrilling adventures at Volcano Bay.
Living near these beloved theme parks allows you to enjoy exhilarating roller coasters and create memories that will last a lifetime.
While theme parks may not be the primary reason why people choose to move to Florida, they undeniably contribute to the state's vibrant culture and economy.
These parks offer a multitude of job opportunities, providing avenues for individuals looking to work in a dynamic and exciting industry.
Additionally, the presence of these renowned attractions has a positive effect on the affordability of real estate in Orlando. The accessibility to affordable housing in the vicinity of these theme parks makes living near the magic even more enticing.
So, if you're a fan of Disney World or eager to experience the thrill of Universal Orlando and SeaWorld, living in Florida offers you the chance to have these incredible attractions practically in your backyard. The possibilities for fun and adventure are endless, making Florida an extraordinary place to call home.
Find the Right Real Estate Agent!
Finding the perfect real estate agent is key to making your dream of living in Florida a reality.
Whether you're searching for a beachfront property, a cozy suburban home, or a vibrant city apartment, a knowledgeable and experienced real estate agent can guide you through the process with ease.
At MakeFloridaYourHome, we specialize in helping individuals and families find their ideal home in the sunshine state.
Our team of expert agents understands the unique nuances of Florida's diverse real estate market. We have extensive knowledge of the different regions, neighborhoods, and communities across the state.
From the stunning coastlines of Miami to the tranquil lakeside communities of Central Florida, we can help you navigate through the options and find the perfect place to call home.
By working with a dedicated real estate agent, you'll gain access to exclusive listings, valuable market insights, and expert advice on pricing and negotiations.
Our goal is to ensure your home-buying journey is smooth, stress-free, and tailored to your specific needs and preferences.
So, whether you're a first-time homebuyer, looking to upgrade your current residence, or seeking an investment property, our team is here to assist you every step of the way. Reach out to MakeFloridaYourHome today and let us help you turn your Florida dream into a reality!
Contact us now to connect with one of our experienced real estate agents at MakeFloridaYourHome. Let us guide you in finding the perfect home in the sunshine state. Your Florida dream awaits!
With over 50 years of mortgage industry experience, we are here to help you achieve the American dream of owning a home. We strive to provide the best education before, during, and after you buy a home. Our advice is based on experience with Phil Ganz and Team closing over One billion dollars and helping countless families.
About Author - Phil Ganz
Phil Ganz has over 20+ years of experience in the residential financing space. With over a billion dollars of funded loans, Phil helps homebuyers configure the perfect mortgage plan. Whether it's your first home, a complex multiple-property purchase, or anything in between, Phil has the experience to help you achieve your goals.