Pros and Cons of Living in Florida

Pros and Cons of Living in Florida

For many people, the Sunshine State at the southern tip of the US is a dream destination.  

Tropical climate, diverse wildlife, and plentiful beaches – you have got reasons for moving to Florida

But do not expect everything here to be sunsets and rainbows. Though you might have seen thousands moving to Florida, what you might have skipped is that a wide range of them moved back as they felt the state is not that exciting as they assumed. And the moral of the story is that it is better not to rush until you have a clear picture of the pros and cons of living in Florida. 

Though Floridians would claim that pluses of living in Florida overweigh minuses, it is important to know the pros and cons of moving to Florida.

If you are still serious about calling the state your new home, here are a few pros and cons of living in Florida to consider before packing your bags.

Florida Facts

  • Area: 65,758 square miles
  • Population: 21,570,527
  • Density: 384.3/sq mi 
  • Capital: Tallahassee
  • Largest city: Jacksonville
  • Major cities: Miami, Tampa, Orlando, St. Petersburg, Hialeah, Tallahassee
  • Nickname: The Sunshine State

As we move ahead, here are a few interesting facts about the state.

  • Florida got its name from Pascua Florida, the Spanish Feast of Flowers in 1513.
  • St. Augustine in Florida, settled by Europeans in 1565 is the nation’s oldest city.
  • Florida is the flattest state in the US.
  • The official state reptile is the alligator.
  • The state produces about 70% of oranges in the US.
  • Florida is the world’s largest producer of grapefruit.
It’s a no snow show hereHigh cost of living
You are never far away from the beachThe state ranks low in healthcare
The abundance of water recreationSummer is not always pleasant
This is the world’s theme park capitalWeather is sometimes nasty
You pay less tax hereFlorida has lots of bugs
Round-the year world-class entertainmentPoor public transport system
The parks here are nature’s hidden trovesThere are hardly any mountain here
The world’s third-largest reef is hereIt is crowded with tourists
The state has the best roadsTerrible drivers make pedestrians unsafe
Florida is highly cosmopolitanThe crime rate is too high
Lots of healthy food to eatInsurance costs are high

Let’s see the pros and cons of living in Florida in detail.

It’s a no snow show here

Florida is one of the only two states with a tropical climate (Hawaii is the second state). The weather here is so good, especially in winter when the northern parts would be under white Florida is one of the only two states with a tropical climate (Hawaii is the second state). The weather here is so good, especially in winter when the northern parts would be under white blankets of snow. As it’s a no-snow show here, people flock to Florida from the northern areas. While it is warm and low humid in winter, there is no threat of hurricanes, tornadoes, violent thunderstorms, and even regular rainfall can be the lowest.

You are never far away from the beach

Florida boasts 1,200 miles of coastline, making it home to hundreds of beaches. Even if you live inland, a beach is not far away. And that makes beach games an integral part of Florida’s sports. The state also hosts unlimited beach festivals year around.

We’ve got a list of top beaches in Florida. 

  • Miami Beach
  • Fort DeSoto Beach
  • Clearwater Beach
  • Cocoa Beach
  • Fort Lauderdale Beach
  • Venice Beach
  • Fort Myers Beach
  • Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park
  • Panama City Beach
  • Daytona Beach
  • Bahia Honda 

The abundance of water recreation

Water is everywhere in Florida. And this makes water sports the popular activity here. After you move to Florida, do not get surprised seeing families spending free time in the water. It is a part of Floridan culture. Join Floridans on sailboats to luxury yachts to ski boats or even just good ol’ pontoon boats for fun with the family. Go for a canoe ride or kayaking trip along the mangroves to do some bird watching. Jet skiing, parasailing, snorkeling, and diving are other water activities to explore in Florida. 

This is the world’s theme park capital 

Florida is the world’s theme park capital. From Walt Disney World to Universal Studios, Sea World, Busch Gardens, and Legoland, almost every entertainment tycoon has theme parks here. It would require weeks to completely explore the fun worlds in Florida. This means you’ll hardly get time to spend at home on weekends or will save flight tickets on vacations. 

You pay less tax here

As a Florida resident, you’ll pay much less of your hard-earned income to government entities than your friend in a neighboring state. Florida taxes are the 4th lowest in the US in the form of excise, income, sales, and property taxes.  

Round-the year world-class entertainment

Florida is all about celebration. Moving here, you’ll realize that the entertainment does not limit to theme parks but there is a celebration at every corner of the state. Every city in Florida hosts concerts, performances, symphony, opera, and much more year-round. In addition, you’ve got unlimited places to pamper yourself, wine, dine, and party. 

The parks here are nature’s hidden troves

Perhaps no state is naturally more scenic than Florida. The state has about 175 state parks and 11 national parks, each hidden troves of nature. The protected lands in Florida showcase stunning ecological and biological diversity. Interestingly, Florida is the only place on the planet where both crocodiles and alligators coexist. 

Here is a list of the 14 best parks, both national and state, in Florida.

  • Biscayne National Park
  • Apalachicola National Forest
  • Bahia Honda State Park
  • Everglades National Park
  • Dry Tortugas National Park
  • Big Cypress National Preserve
  • Canaveral National Seashore
  • Everglades National Park
  • Dry Tortugas National Park
  • Big Cypress National Preserve
  • Silver Springs State Park
  • Gulf Islands National Seashore
  • Point Washington State Forest
  • Fort Matanzas National Monument

The world’s third-largest reef is here

The 350-mile Florida Reef or the Great Florida Reef is the only coral reef system in the continental US. It is home to over 40 species of reef-building corals that provide shelter, food, and breeding sites for millions of plants and animals. It is also the third-largest coral reef system in the world. 

The state has the best roads

Florida takes pride in its robust, flat, and straight roads. If you’ve moved here with your car, you’ll have an amazing driving experience as the roads are pothole-free and are in good condition. The absence of freezing and thawing effects in Florida play a major role in maintaining the roads in good condition. 

Florida is highly cosmopolitan

A big plus of Florida is its diversity. Over the past 10 years, the state has become highly cosmopolitan and as per the 2020 Census, Florida is 64.1% diverse, higher than the national average. While about 51.6% of the population is non-Hispanic White, 26.5% are Hispanics and 14.5% of the population is Black or African American. 

Lots of healthy food to eat

Because of the weather conditions and the absence of snow, Florida cultivates many fruits and vegetables that many other states don’t. The state is the largest cultivator of grapes and oranges in the US. About 70% of oranges in the US are grown in Florida. Eating fresh and organic fruits and vegetables is not possible anywhere in the US as in Florida. 

Till now, we were discussing the positives of living in Florida. But as said earlier, moving to Florida has got its own pros and cons. Let’s see the negatives of living in the Sunshine State. 

High cost of living

If you’re moving to Florida for better income, hold on! Those who’ve moved here lament that they are paid lower for the same job they had in the state they moved from. The lower wages combined with higher expenses will not leave much in your savings account. The home rent, miscellaneous expenses, healthcare, and transportation cost higher in Florida than in the neighboring states. Check for the best career options in Florida.

The state ranks low in healthcare

While discussing the pros and cons of moving to Florida, we cannot be blind towards the poor healthcare. Despite being a paradise of beauty, Florida ranks low in healthcare. It ranks 36th and many hospitals are rated below the national average. However, there are decent hospitals in cities that are ranked best to retire. 

Summer is not always pleasant

Florida in winter is an amazing place but not in summer. It gets too humid in summer and venturing outside can be tiresome. You would need to switch on the air conditioner while driving or at home. 

Weather is sometimes nasty

It rains a lot and heavily in Florida. Thunderstorms are common and can knock out electricity. Hurricanes and tornadoes too lash Florida annually. This causes a major blow to the economy every year.

Florida has lots of bugs

If you’re scared of bugs, Florida is not for you. Bugs are everywhere in Florida,some of which are very large. The roaches and the fruit flies are a real nuisance, and you have to be scrupulously tidy when cooking or dealing with food. You need to know that scorpions, snakes, cockroaches, and spiders are there in large numbers. You also need to learn to bear mosquito bites. 

Poor public transport system

While big cities have public transport, it is almost non-existing in smaller towns and countryside and you need to own a car to commute in Florida. While moving here, ensure you bring your car or otherwise you’ll be in real trouble. 

There are no mountains

Florida is flat and the state has no mountains. If you love mountains and alpine wilderness, think twice before moving here. The state does not have hiking or mountaineering destinations and to enjoy one, you need to drive up to Georgia or Carolinas

It is crowded with tourists

Being highly scenic is something Florida is always proud of. However, the darker side is the high influx of tourists who make the state too crowded. “Snowbirds” invade much of Florida during the winter season, and spring break can get pretty crazy in some parts of the state. The population is shooting up too high and also the roads are choked year round. 

Terrible drivers make pedestrians unsafe

As Florida is one of the best states to retire, you will see septuagenarians and octogenarians in driving seats. Due to poor eyesight, some of them drive too dangerously and cannot recognize the road signs, resulting in major accidents. Pedestrians and bikers are the worst hit by these terrible drivers.

The crime rate is too high

Unfortunately, Florida’s average crime rate is higher than the national average. Even the violent crime rate is shooting up in recent years. And there are areas in big cities like Jacksonville where you need to avoid, especially in the late hours. 

Insurance costs are high

Because of the high rate of tornadoes, hurricanes, and lightning, insurance costs are too high in Florida. This means if you have a plan to live here, be ready to pay more to insure your things. 

Hope now you are aware of both the pros and cons of moving to Florida. We guess you are prepared to gauge both the positives and negatives, to make the right call.   

Tip: While you move home, the safety of your household belongings will be the priority. A  trustworthy moving company at your side can make you relaxed during the process. Here are the top-rated movers in Florida.

How many people live in Florida?

As of the 2020 Census, about 21 million people reside permanently in Florida. However, the population will be much more as people from different parts of the US come to Florida year round. In winter, thousands come as snowbirds while in summer, people flock here to explore the enticing beauty of the Sunshine State.

What are the best places to live in Florida?

As Florida has no shortage of places to reside, it is a tough task to filter down a few. However, considering the job opportunities, low crime rate, climate, and infrastructure, we’ve narrowed down the 10 best places to live in Florida.
St. Petersburg

Is Florida a good place to start a business?

Florida’s economy is the largest in the country. If Florida was a standalone nation, it would be one of the largest economies in the world. And it is no surprise; Florida is one of the best places to launch a business. Florida has many positive factors, including low corporate taxes, no income tax, robust infrastructure, pleasant climate, and low unemployment rate. If you are serious about business, consider tourism, finance, agriculture, and aerospace as these are the prominent industries.

Is Florida a good place to retire?

Yes, Florida is one of the most sought-after retiring destinations in the US. The pleasant climate minus snow, flat topography, no income tax, and amazing infrastructure contribute to making the Sunshine State a favorite retiree destination.

Is healthcare good in Florida?

It is true that Florida ranks low in healthcare and many hospitals rank below the national level. However, this is an overall ranking and it does not mean that Florida has no good hospitals. The state has many top-rated hospitals in Tampa, Fort Myers, Orlando, and Fort Lauderdale, which are rated as the best cities to retire.