Before 2020, most people were already moving to Florida to benefit from the great sunshine and no state income taxes of the city. Then, when the COVID-19 pandemic gave a lot of people no choice but to reconsider their choice of home, there is an increase in the number of people interested in moving closer to the beach.
Single-family home sales in Florida were increased up to 27% as of October 2010, with the average sale price increasing above 15%, as released by the Florida Realtors organization. The increase has been linked to huge influx of people to Florida.
A lot of people may choose Florida as a retirement destination, but there are many cities in the state that are significant beyond golf courses, beaches and retirement relaxation.
Are you in need of a new home where the direct sun will shine on your skin and on your personal and career life? Below are the best locations to consider.
Why Choose these as the Best Locations in Florida?
We considered the data from the 25 major cities in Florida – all beyond a population of 100,000 each, to better understand the places that offer the best of affordability and total great living. While what you find perfect of a city might differ for another person, there are popular factors that we all seek when looking for a new place to call home.
Below is a quick look into the important factors that guided our research:
- Safety: We checked per capita statistics on property crime and violent crime incidents in the largest cities in Florida to come up with the safest place to live.
- Affordability: The first expense on anyone’s list is buying or renting of a home. We gathered and compared the cost of living of each city with its average income per worker. When available, we also look into the average home prices data from Redfin, a real estate brokerage, to determine a better idea of what renting and buying would cost.
- Job market: We checked the city-level unemployment data at Bureau of Labor Statistics from the fall of 2020 to get a clear idea of how these cities has bounced back from previous shockwaves of the pandemic in the beginning of 2020. It is necessary to understand that a lot of places have encountered challenges with unemployment. Looking into 2021 and the hope of a vaccine, there is promise everywhere (as well as amazing sunset, too).
- Educational attainment: Educational means achievement, so we checked Census data on the amount of residents that holds bachelor’s degrees in each of the locations.
- Culture: We all have different preferences about what to do when we are not working, so our culture metrics are determined by the opportunities to see, do and enjoy these cities. We looked into varieties of information from convention and visitors bureaus, the state tourism agency and chamber of commerce listings to get a better idea of what people do when they are not working.
Best Places in Florida to Live in 2021
Population growth notes: Miami’s metro population according to World Population Growth could pass 7.5 million people by 2040.
Average listing home price: $400,000
Beautiful beaches, great restaurants and a nice social scene make Miami one of the best places to live in the world. The city is the 4th largest urban location in the country, drawing in young professionals, families, and retirees altogether. This highly diverse place to live is also a bustling arts scene, with many arts districts, galleries, popular art shows, and museums located across the city. Miami gets a high score from AreaVibes for its sunny weather as well as international-level amenities.
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Population growth notes: Tampa’s growth, according to World Population Review, is because of a higher number of births than deaths as well as a high net migration. The new population growth in Tampa is “expected to make the city more vibrant and urban.”
Average listing home price: $272,900
Tampa is not only a nice place to reside in Florida; the city also features on our list of countrywide best places to live and this is due to its affordability and employers, such as Citigroup, USAA, and Raymond James.
The city is also open to diversity: Tamps, together with neighbor St. Petersburg, earned a 100/100 score from the Human Rights Campaign for its backing of members of the LGBTQ+ community.
The city will still open its arms to newcomers of various kinds in 2021, too. Projections from the Urban Land Institute as well as PWC show that the Tampa Metro area is the 6th most beautiful region in the nation for job development and land growth.
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Population growth notes: Jacksonville, according to World Population Review, is not stopping its growth any time soon. Its metropolitan area population is around 1.4 million residents.
Average listing home price: $227,000
This is the largest city in Florida as well as in the Southern U.S. It offers something for all residents. Professionals will have access to numerous jobs and a thriving economy; families will have access to great schools and a lot of cultural attractions, and retires will get a lot of affordable areas and fairly priced housing.
The city is also where the third largest seaport in the state is located. Jacksonville scored high with AreaVibes for its great amenities, year-round sunshine, affordable cost of living, and stable real estate market.
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Population growth notes: Orlando, according to World Population Review, had the 2nd highest population growth of all the cities in Florida between 2010 & 2012, increasing with more than 7,100 new residents.
Median listing home price: $275,000
The economy of Orlando experienced a major hit in 2020 with huge layoffs at Disney as well as a tourist season that experienced a hold. While unemployment rate of the city was still high as of the end of last year, Orlando is projected for a massive rebound.
Before pandemic, Orlando had been the leading city as regards employment growth among major cities in the country for 4 consecutive years, as shown on the data of Labor Department.
Projecting into the future and outside the travel industry, leading employers, such as the University of Central Florida, Publix, Lockheed Martin and a host of hospitals assist in diversifying of the business landscape of the city offer much to the city.
As regards culture, you will need to put in your best to live like a local, which involves staying away from theme parks and getting to know the city’s neighborhoods instead.
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5. Cape Coral
Population growth notes: the population in Cape Coral, according to World Population Growth estimate, has increased 16.5% since the last census.
Average listing home price: $264,900
When you first look at it, Cape Coral might look like a retirement spot. While the population of seniors in the city is actually large (20% of the population are in the 65+ demographic), Cape Coral is turning into a place for anyone looking for career opportunities, especially in the healthcare and light manufacturing industries.
As a matter of fact, Cape Coral was ranked as one of the rapidly-growing employment markets in the United States as reported in a business insurance resource AdvisorSmith in 2019. That activity has helped cushion the pandemic storm for the city, with a 5.5% unemployment rate.
If you are looking for wider varieties of arts and culture, you may need to look for a more urban location. But if you are in for a spring-break pace all through the year, the beaches, as well as happy hours here, is a perfect match for you.
6. St. Petersburg
Population growth notes: St. Petersburg’s growth, according to World Population Review, has reduced in recent years. The city’s population after 1980 has been stagnant until the year 2000, when it increased by 10,000 people. However, the population had reduced by 2010.
Average listing home price: $284,000
This city is also referred to as St. Pete, having an average of 360 days of sunshine per annum, which makes it one of the sunniest cities in the United States to live. The year-round sunny weather is not just the reason people love to live in the city.
Considering its closeness to the ocean, one can easily enjoy varieties of waterfronts. Residents can also benefit from the city’s bustling downtown, outdoor parks as well as tasty restaurants. St. Petersburg was given a high score by AreaVibes for its mild weather as well as varieties of amenities.
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7. Fort Lauderdale
Population growth notes: Fort Lauderdale’s population, according to World Population Growth, has grown 8% since the last census in 2010, and there’s no indication that the population growth is reducing anytime soon.
Average listing home price: $310,000
This city is great beyond just a destination for Spring Break. It is a South Florida City, which is home to some of the most attractive beaches in the world, not to talk of a great number of other attractions, which include international-level museums, a beautiful and excellent dining scene and exciting nightlife.
Retirees who love boating and fishing will also have a lot to do in this city. Fort Lauderdale is also where you will find the largest in-water boat show in the universe, the Fort Lauderdale International Show. The city scores high marks from AreaVibes for its great weather and many amenities.
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Population growth notes: Tallahassee, according to World Population Growth, is the twelfth rapidly growing metropolitan area with a growth rate of 12.4% – more than Miami and Tampa.
Average listing home price: $235,000
This city is located in Leon County and is the state capital of Florida and popularly known as a college town because it is home to Tallahassee Community College, Florida State University, and Florida A & M University. Tallahassee’s population in 2019 was 199,202, which makes it the ninth-largest city in Florida.
Being the capital of Florida, Tallahassee is home to almost 30 agency headquarters as well as has a plentiful number of law firms, trade, and professional associations, as well as lobbying organizations. The city is known as a regional center for scientific research and has been given an award by All American City Award in past years.
9. Port St. Lucie
Population growth notes: although population increase in Port St. Lucie, according to World Population Review, has reduced since the 2000s, the city is still expected to develop and that is all thanks to its affordable real estate prices.
Average listing home price: $249,900
This city has fast turned into one of the famous places to live in Florida. It offers a highly affordable choice to its expensive neighbor Palm Beach County. Residents will certainly find a lot of budget-friendly homes to buy or rent in safe, neat neighborhoods.
Port St. Lucie also offers varieties of outdoor attractions and activities, such as amazing golf courses and sandy beaches. Retirees will have more than 55 communities to live in too. Port St. Lucie scores high with AreaVibes for its numerous amenities, stable real estate market, low crime rate and warm weather.
Population growth notes: Hialeah, according to World Population Review, has continued to develop non-stop over the years, only seeing one little dip in its population between years 2000 and 2010.
Average listing home price: $325,000
This famous major suburb is home to the most population of Cubans and Cuban-Americans in the country as reported by the World Population Review Families are attracted to the suburb, thanks to its affordable housing and lower crime rate.
Hialeah is also the best place to find some of the best Cuban restaurants in the state of Florida. The majority of residents speak Spanish as their major language and have access to a low cost of living, unlike many other suburbs of Miami. Hialeah receives high marks from AreaVibes for its various amenities, low crime rate, and sunny weather.
Are You Set to Relocate to any of these Cities?
If you choose to move, you may need the help of a professional moving company with the heavy lifting and hauling. Good news, we are here to cover that and more for you. Consult the extensive network of reputable and trustworthy movers on Adams Van Lines, as they are completely licensed and insured. Have a sweet and enjoyable move.