Moving to Florida Pros & Cons of Retiring or Living in Florida Mon, 30 Mar 2015 17:06:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Start Here Before Moving to Florida Sat, 28 Mar 2015 18:30:32 +0000 Here Are Some Facts You May Want to Be Aware of Before Moving Your Family to Florida

Warning: Some of you may find these facts, statistics and studies disturbing. Why? Because they run contrary to after hurricane99.9999% of the information you’ll come by when researching a relocation to Florida. Most of what you’ll find on the internet is 100% positive, Florida is perfect, Florida is paradise type of information. It’s put out there by people who are motivated by their own personal financial interests because they will make money (often lots of it) if you move to Florida, and absolutely nothing if you don’t.  Almost all of them don’t represent your family’s best interest, just their own interest. There’s nothing wrong with that, it’s just business. If that’s the kind of information you are looking for, 100% Florida is perfect (not backed up by any studies or proof), and everyone who moves to Florida lives happily ever after, you may be very disappointed by reading further, because we don’t perpetuate myths on this site.

What You Will Find On this Blog

You will find links to polls, studies, statistics, reports, etc. done mostly by non-profit organizations that gather facts and statistics and make them available to the public. The difference is, these organizations aren’t trying to profit by having you move to any particular state. They just assemble and report the statistics, so as a consumer, you can compare where you live now to Florida, or any other state. Since these organizations are mostly non-profit entities, they don’t have the financial resources to get their findings out in front of the public as easily that cash generating, for-profit entities can. Most news outlets depend on advertising, so they may be reluctant to run certain study results, because that may disturb their advertisers. I don’t accept any advertising on this site.

So What Should You Know Before Moving to Florida?

University of Florida Study Shows Florida Is a Very Transient State.

People move to Florida after bad winters elsewhere or because they had a great time on vacation in the state. Everyone loves Florida when they first move. As time passes and they learn what living in Florida is really like, many (most?) come to realize they made a big mistake and move out. The time frame for this to happen varies. It could be years or months. It can be affected by natural events like particularly busy hurricane seasons or summer heat and humidity that last nine months a year or longer. It can be affected by economic events. When times are bad, Florida’s high growth can stop, jobs dry up and people move back home.

That doesn’t happen in Nebraska, New York, Maine or most other states, because most people are already “home”. High growth states can become disastrous when people stop moving in, at the same time even more people than the normal high turn-over, are moving out. This results in steeper drops in home vales, higher unemployment, more closed businesses, etc. than in non-transient states facing the same problem.

How Transient Is Florida?

The University of Florida documented 13,164,695 people who moved to Florida, from another U.S. state, using Census Bureau and IRS records in a study published in 2009. During the same time studied, they were able to document 9,540,260 moving out of Florida to a different US state. To give you some perspective, they documented more people moving out of Florida (back to their home state?) than the total population now living in 40 US states. If you took every single person now living in New Jersey and moved them to an uninhabited area, that still wouldn’t equal the amount of people who moved out of Florida. Roughly every 3 years, a million new people move to Florida to replace the roughly million who moved there previously, and moved out.

Will you become one of the many who move to Florida, only to move out? If so, how long will you last? How disruptive would that be? How much will it cost your family financially and emotionally? I’ll write more on the financial cost in an upcoming post because it will probably be far higher than you may estimate. Why? Because people move to Florida during the boom times, which pushes home prices skyward. They buy high, like now. Then, most need to or want to move out during the bust times, like after hurricane hits. Or when the high growth stops and Florida loses jobs faster than non-transient states. When everyone heads for the Florida exits and wants to sell at the same time, home prices drop like a boulder.

People Living in Florida Tell Pollsters It’s Not a Great State to Live In

Even after a record number of years without a major hurricane swamping of leveling big chunks of the state, 89% of Floridians polled said Florida was not the best state to live in (2013 National Gallup Poll of all 50 states). Keep in mind a huge number of these people previously that Florida was the best state, that’s why they moved. What happened? Perception met reality. What reality? As you’ll see if you care to read further, the truth is that many other states offer a higher overall quality of life than Florida, including many of the states these poor people left to move to Florida.

Here’s More

Florida’s Crime Rate Among the Worst in the US

Study Finds Most Depressing Cities Are in Florida

Study Says Florida Towns Score Poorly for Successful Aging

Original Best Places to Retire List Maker Excludes Florida from 2014 List

Note: This took guts, because Money Magazine & Time Magazine are for profit enterprises that depend on advertising. They put out a list choosing places based on actual quality of life factors, not what will sell more advertising.

Study Says Florida’s Worst than Most States for Retirement

So what’s the point?

Florida’s overall quality of life is far lower than what most people who haven’t lived there, believe. Most people who actually live in Florida, aren’t that happy about the state and their lives. Far more people move to Florida only to discover it was a mistake, and move out regardless of cost, than what most non-Floridians would suspect.

The cost of moving to Florida only to realize at some point it’s a mistake, can be very expensive. It can take a huge toll on your family emotionally, as well as financially. There is information available that can help prevent you from making the wrong choice.

The Florida Move Guide tells in depth, actual reasons given by people wanting to sell their homes to move out of Florida. It also explains what you can do when you first move to Florida to lower your odds of experiencing that same fate. After reading the book, you should have a much better idea what living in Florida is really like, and if Florida is right for your family or not.

How to Retire Happier would be most helpful to those who are now thinking about what they will do when they retire, including where they will live. All 50 states are ranked by quality of life factors and assigned a “chance of successful relocation” percentage. It can help you decide if moving from where you are now, to another state is a good idea or not. After reading How to Retire Happier, you may come away with a completely different plan for what you will do on your longest vacation ever (retirement), and in a far different location than you are now considering.

Hope you found this post helpful!








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Best Places to Retire in Florida 2015 Mon, 15 Dec 2014 16:03:05 +0000 These are the best places to retire to in Florida if you’re planning to move here in 2015. We believe we’ve used the same priorities that most retirees would in choosing a place to move to for retirement. This year we’ve given a high priority to access to amenities such as shopping, restaurants, pubs, entertainment, and recreation.

A very low crime rate was another high priority because the last thing you want in a retirement location is to be stressed out about your personal safety when trying to enjoy those amenities. We have included places that are affordable, and places that have a higher cost of living. We’re also going to let you in on a little secret. There are fantastic towns to retire in Florida where you would need to be able to pay a million bucks to buy a home, but you could rent a place in that very safe upscale town for a little over $1000.

I do need to point something out that you should be aware of. When I first moved to Florida 20 years ago, Florida cities and towns claimed most of Money Magazine’s “Best Places to Retire” list. The list that Money just put out right before I wrote this post, does not include any Florida towns. Money Magazine was a pioneer with best places lists, in fact I used their best places to live in Florida list, when I moved two decades ago. A lot has changed in 20 years, and when you compare Florida’s crime rates, quality of health care, cost of living, etc., Florida doesn’t fair as well as it did decades ago when our grandparents moved to Florida.’s excellent recent best places to retire list ranked Florida poorly also.

There’s two main reasons many new retirees still move to Florida. We all loved visiting Florida while on vacation. Unfortunately, living in Florida and being a tourist here are completely different, especially if you’ll reside in Florida twelve months a year. Retirees move to Florida for the “warm” weather. The reality is that most people who move out of Florida name weather as one of the main reasons. Before you make that final decision to move to Florida you may want to learn more about what living in Florida is really like.


The Best Places to Retire in Florida 2015


Florida’s West Coast- Punta Gorda

Punta Gorda is a safe small town with a large waterfront park on a river. There is also a large covered pier filled with restaurants, shops and pubs where lots of fun events and festivals are held. If you have a boat or are thinking of getting one, then this is a perfect place to look because there are a ton of homes with canals in the backyard that lead out to the river and then the Gulf of Mexico.

The official median home price for Punta Gorda is high but that’s because there are so many waterfront homes with Gulf access. Most retirees will be able to afford a nice non-waterfront condo or home here. Beautiful sandy beaches on the Gulf are just a short drive away. Englewood Florida, about a half hour north is another good choice but they roll the sidewalks up early there. These towns are worth looking into, especially if boating or fishing is something you’ll be pursuing during retirement.

Watch a Video of Punta Gorda, Florida

Florida’s East Coast, Upscale- Palm Beach

Yes, the Palm Beach, Florida where “the Donald” has a home. While you would have to spend in the neighborhood of a million bucks to buy a home here, you may find a decent place to rent in this town for about $1200 a month. This is one of the safest most beautiful places on the beach you’ll find in Florida, and just about anything you could want to buy or do is nearby.

While we don’t recommend West Palm Beach because of the crime rate, North Palm Beach is also a good choice. You can get a home there for about 1/3 the cost of Palm Beach, although rentals are only slightly less.

Video of Palm Beach, Florida


Florida’s East Coast- Indian Harbor Beach

Indian Harbor Beach is located on Florida’s east coast about half way between Jacksonville and Miami, not far off I-95. This is one of the few areas in Florida where it’s still affordable to buy an “island” lifestyle. Condos in Indian Harbor start under $100,000 at the time of this writing and single detached 3-bedroom 2-bath homes start under $200,000. Rentals start under $1000. Not bad for an area in Florida that is safe and you’ll likely be able to walk or bike to the beach from your home.

Indian Harbor Beach is almost due east from Orlando, and day trips to the theme parks from here are possible. Next door satellite beach is also a good bet. One caveat, barrier Islands may become the first causalities and possibly unaffordable overnight, if or when insurers raise rates because of sea level rise or in response to losses from the next major hurricane.

Indian Harbor Video (There wasn’t any good “tour” videos but found this one of baby sea turtles on the beach)


Next Page- Best Places to Retire in Florida 2015


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