Moving to Florida Pros Cons of moving and living in Florida Tue, 26 Aug 2014 20:15:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 What? Better Place to Retire Florida VS South Dakota Sat, 23 Aug 2014 17:23:28 +0000 Would it be Better to Retire/Live in Florida or South Dakota?

I know, you think that’s a stupid question because the “obvious” answer is that Florida is a much better place to live or retire than mount rushmore south dakotaSouth Dakota. Some of you are probably asking, “Where is South Dakota, is that near the Ukraine? For those of you who have been out of school for a long time, South Dakota is part of the US. What does South Dakota have to do with a website about moving to Florida? If you “assume” that Florida is the best state to live in or retire to, I’m going to use South Dakota to make a point.

The Match-up Florida (where you want to move to) VS South Dakota (you don’t even know where it is)

Ok lets begin! It’s Florida, the assumed best state to retire/live in by millions VS South Dakota a place most Americans have never been to and but there’s something about a big bunch of rocks there.

1) Quality of Healthcare Who Wins Florida or South Dakota?

We all want to know that we’ll be properly taken care of if we get sick, so which is the better state when it comes to healthcare quality?

Winner: South Dakota

What? South Dakota? They have doctors there? According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality South Dakota easily beats Florida (which scores in the lower half of all states). Score Florida-0 / South Dakota-1

2) Violent Crime Rate, Who Wins Florida or South Dakota?

I don’t know about you, but a best place to live or retire has to have a low risk of becoming a victim of a violent crime and becoming tomorrow’s news headline. Who has a lower rate of rapes, murders and other violent crime?

Winner: South Dakota

Unfortunately for Florida which consistently has one of the highest the highest violent crime rates in the US, this wasn’t even close with a violent crime rate about 50% higher than South Dakota according to the FBI. The score in now Florida-0 / South Dakota-2

3) Well-Being Who Wins?

Now wait a minute. Are you just making this up? What is a “well-being” score? The Gallop Poll people together with Healthways asked residents of all the US states about their emotion heath, physical health, healthy behaviors, access to healthcare and other questions to come up with a “Well-Being Index”. It’s another tool to determine where people feel they are experiencing a better quality of life.

The Winner: South Dakota (by a mile)

South Dakota ranked 2nd out of the 50 states, Florida ranked 30th. Don’t blame me. The rankings are a result of residents from all states answering the same questions. Score Florida-0 / South Dakota-3

4) Total Burden of State Taxes, Florida Doesn’t have a Personal Income Tax, Who Wins?

Nobody loves paying taxes, so which state takes more money out of it’s residents pockets?

Winner: South Dakota

Wow, I didn’t see that one one coming, did you? Turns out South Dakota doesn’t have a personal state income tax either, and a lower total bite than Florida according to the Tax Foundation. Florida’s reeling right now, come on weather, when are we going to battle about the weather? Score Florida-0 / South Dakota-4

5) Property Crime, Who has Less of it?

Violent crime is bad, but how safe would you feel about living in your home after knowing criminals broke in and went through your stuff? Again, I sure don’t want to be shot or stabbed, but I don’t want thugs breaking into my home or stealing my car either, so who wins?

Winner: South Dakota

Again, not even close with Florida having 50% more of this type of life disrupting unnecessary stuff, according to the FBI. This isn’t your grandmothers Florida. Score Florida-0 / South Dakota-5

6) Standard of Living

Florida’s sure going to win this because I think people in South Dakota still do laundry by taking their clothes down to the river and beating them with sticks on the rocks. Anyway, Gallop asked residents of all states if they were satisfied with their standard of living, and if the felt it was going to improve or get worse in the future. Warning to Florida-lovers who never lived in the state, a persons feelings about Florida changes the longer you actually live there. Again, don’t blame me for their answers.

Winner: South Dakota

Residents in South Dakota scored in the top 10 in the nation at #6, and Florida, lets just say they weren’t as happy with their standard of living. Score Florida-0 / South Dakota-6

7) Question: Is your state the best, or one of the best states to live in?

Alright! Florida’s got to win this, right? Because if you found this website, you’re probably thinking of moving to Florida and to blow all that cash to move to a state a million miles away, you wouldn’t do that unless Florida was the best state to live in, right? Surely you must think it’s one of the best. I wonder what people who actually already live in Florida and South Dakota think. After all, all of the people who moved to Florida must of thought is was at least one of the best places to live in the US before they moved, right?

Winner: South Dakota

Curses, those darn people at Gallop Polls are busting my myth that Florida is a great place to retire to or live in. Less than 50% of Floridians responded that Florida was the best state to live in, or even one of the best. More than 50% of South Dakotains (did I say that right? It doesn’t matter, they don’t have internet up there yet so nobody from South Dakota will ever see this) think their state is the best or at least one of the best. There’s more. A higher percentage of Floridians said Florida was THE worst state in the US to live in, than South Dakotaians said their state was the worst. Score Florida-0 / South Dakota

8) Weather, This Should be a No-Brainer, Right?

Now come on, Who’s got better weather, the “sunshine state” or some state that you never hear about, don’t know where it is and the main mode of public transportation is by buffalo.

Winner: _____ You score it after you read below.

South Dakota: 4 Seasons with cold winters. Florida: 3 seasons, winter (3months and beautiful weather) summer (up to 9 months of hot humid weather with the air conditioner running full speed) and hurricane season (6 months per year)

Hint: Why do people move to Florida? For the weather. Why do people move out of Florida? The weather (and other things)

8) Which State has More Tourist Attractions?

Winner: Florida! Yea Florida!

The Points I Wanted to Make?

1) Florida is a great place to Visit

2) A great place to visit doesn’t necessarily make a great place to live.

Think you’d be crazy to move to South Dakota?

Then watch this short video!

I‘m working on finishing my new book that will show where the true best places to retire/live are, where to move from, best retirement lifestyles, places to travel and live overseas and more. There’s nothing out there like what you’ll learn from this book.


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Best Cities for Successful Aging Florida Mon, 30 Jun 2014 14:38:03 +0000 The Best Smaller Metro Area in Florida for Successful Aging is Gainesville, FL

Gainesville Florida has been one of our favorite places to live or retire for years. Usually not even award metalsconsidered by most retirees when deciding where to relocate to in Florida to enjoy their retirement years, yet the great little city continues to show up on various best places list year after year. This time it showed up as the 6th best place to age well out of 259 small metro areas in the US and easily the highest in Florida according to The Miliken Institute. They ranked areas based on how well they scored in areas important to seniors such as healthcare, wellness, convenience, community engagement, crime, safety and weather.

Gainesville FL is a “Young” City

What’s amazing about this ranking as a best place for successful aging is that we’ve always felt it was one the the best places to live in Florida for young people as well. Located in the center of Florida about an hour south of Jacksonville and an hour north of Orlando, Gainesville is the home of the University of Florida. The county in which it is located is mostly rural so the roughly 50,000 students that call Gainesville home, make Alachua County the “youngest” in the state of Florida. After spending time anywhere else in Florida where there are lots of retirees it can be a shock when you first arrive in Gainesville.

Gainesville FL Doesn’t Close at 8pm Like Many Other Florida Towns

Because of all the students who live there, their parents who flock to the city on weekends to visit and the alumni that come in to watch football games, there’s a lot of money spent in Gainesville on dining, shopping and entertainment. Sure all the big box stores and fast food franchises are there, but there are also tons of fantastic, unique independently owned restaurants and shops. You can read more about Gainesville here

Best Small Cities for Successful Aging Florida Runner-up Punta Gorda Florida

Punta Gorda on southwest Florida’s Gulf Coast is located about an hour north of Fort Myers Florida. It was a top pick nearly 20 years ago on Money Magazines Best Places to Live list. It is also a top pick by a major golf publication because of the large number of golf courses in the area. Unlike Gainesville, Punta Gorda has one of the highest median ages in Florida and while the restaurants are crowded with seniors looking for early bird dinners at 4pm in the afternoon, you’ll hear nothing but crickets at 8pm in this area.

Ranking down at the bottom of the list for small metro areas in Florida were Panama City at 193 and Ocala at 216th out of 259.

Jacksonville is the Best Large Metro Area for Successful Aging in Florida

I think this another good choice by the institute, even though ranking 40th out of 100 US metro areas isn’t real impressive, it is the their best choice in Florida. We have named Jacksonville as a best city in Florida in this post. Cape Coral-Fort Myers was ranked 46th and Sarasota-Bradenton-Venice placed 47th. The Sarasota and Venice areas have been yearly favorites of ours for both general places to live and for retirement.

Large Florida Metro Areas that scored poorly are Palm Bay-Melborne-Titusville at 89th and Lakeland-Winter Haven at a low 97th out of 100. Ouch.

The trend that started about a decade ago, of colder snowy states making up the top spots on “best places lists” continues. Recent health and wellness, best to live, best to retire and in my view most importantly in polls of residents of the states themselves, states that were never considered as the place to move to decades ago, now seem to be the places where people are enjoying life and where they live the most. Fast growth states from a decade ago like Florida, Arizona and Nevada have fallen behind.

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