A state located in the southeastern region of the U.S, Florida has a population of over 21 million. Among the 50 United States, it is the third-most populous and the 22nd-most extensive.

Living in Florida

Living in Florida

Florida has a border to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the northwest by Alabama, to the north by Georgia, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, and to the south by the Straits of Florida. The capital of this state is Tallahassee and it’s the most populous municipality in Jacksonville.

Also referred to as the Sunshine State, Florida is known for its tropical climate, diverse wildlife, and plentiful beaches. Although, it is surprisingly quite a big, diverse state which is not uniform at all.

The Miami area seems like NY made a switch to the Caribbean. The panhandle area that incorporates cities like Tallahassee, on the opposite hand, certainly has more of a southern feel. The Orlando area is extremely touristy, and the Florida Keys are totally unique.

You may have your appeal towards spending your days in the sunny space of Florida. And if you are planning to make a move there, we have some advantages and disadvantages lined up for you to consider.

Pros of Living in Florida

1. Overall Low Tax Burden

As compared to where you live now, you’ll most likely be paying far less of your hard-earned money in taxes to state and local government entities in Florida.

The general tax burden Florida residents pay is the fourth-lowest of the 50 states, according to wallet hub.com. The only exceptions are the residents of Tennessee, Delaware, and Alaska, who pay less in combined to state and native taxes. The general tax burden can be explained as the combined cost of excise, income, property, and sales taxes.

2. Weather

The weather in Florida is just about as close to perfect as you can get anywhere in the US, from November through February and sometimes March, it depends on your location in Florida and also the weather that specific year.

Even in the winter months, you’ll be expecting warm temperatures at or around what you’d set your thermostat to, combined with comfortably low humidity and much sunshine.

During the winter, there’s no threat of hurricanes. Also during most years in the course of winter, the threat of tornadoes, violent thunderstorms, and even regular rainfall is often quite low.

3. Better Protection of Financial Assets

According to Florida Move Guide, Florida (along with Texas) have laws drawn to better protect their citizen’s home and other assets than most other states. So if you don’t have a lot but you would like the strongest laws to assist you to retain what you’ve got or if you’re a high net worth individual, becoming a Florida resident could also be a further reason to determine your primary residence within the state.

4. Most Traveled to Tourist Destination in the US

People from everywhere on the planet spend tons of their time, money, and energy to visit Florida for a vacation. By living in Florida, you’ll just be at a distance where a brief, far less costly trip by car will take you to the beaches, theme parks, and amazing winter weather that over 110 million tourists a year now attend great lengths to have a chance at enjoying.

5. Best Roads in the Country

If you have gotten tired of constantly hitting body jarring potholes then Florida could also be the place for you as most of the roads in this state are flat, straight, smooth, and pothole-free due to there being no presence of freezing and thawing effect which will wreak havoc on the roads.

6. No Snow-Shoveling in Winter

According to the national oceanic and atmospheric administration (NOAA), Florida has more possible days of sunshine than most other states.
It is also uncommon to be scraping ice off your car windows and you won’t have to be dressing up in thick layers of winter wear each time you heat outside during the colder months.

7. Outdoor Activities

Be it yachting, surfing, sailing, diving, swimming, or going for a cruise the warm weather of Florida allows you to go all out!

Also, there are outdoor sports such as golf and tennis to partake in, so if you are into those you’ll find lots of high-quality facilities all year round.

Cons of living in Florida

1. High Cost of Living

As of the start of 2019, the overall cost of living in Florida is above the value of living in most other states, according to the information derived from the Council for community and economic research.

There have been complaints by many working Florida residents of being paid lower wages for an equivalent job that they had within the state they moved from. With the costs being higher and the income lower, there can be increased stress and that’s not what most people expect.

2. High Overall Crime Rate

The crime rate in Florida is higher and has been for years, than it is in most other states, according to information derived from FBI statistics. To avoid such a disadvantage, you can move to a city or town in Florida that offers the residents a low crime rate.

To go across a list, most of the “Best Places” listed at the site StateOfFloridaLiving.com will show properties that have far lower violent crime rates than the national average which might help you deal better with this problem.

3. The Weather Might Take a Turn

Apart from sunshine, there can be a lot of rain in Florida and when it does, it rains heavily. The thunderstorms can get strong enough to knock out your electricity, and lightning strikes are commonly taken. The hurricanes if they reach near you, might get disruptive and destructive.

4. Higher Risk of Natural Disasters

It costs more to insure a home in Florida as compared to anywhere else within the U.S. and the reasons for it are very good. As a resident, you may have to face dangers of disruption to your life from tornadoes, hurricanes, flooding, droughts, wildfires, and other disasters. Such disasters aren’t as common but if you’re living in Florida full time, you will have to consider these negatives.

5. Overcrowded

Now having around 20,000,000 people living in Florida and 1000 more moving in a day, the state is at present the 3rd most populous state within the country. Most of the 20 million residents sleep in along the coast and therefore the Orlando Metro area.

Once you add 110,000,000+ tourists a year who mostly stay within the same populated areas, traffic can become a nightmare, parking is often almost impossible to seek out and lots of residents feel overcrowding is reducing the state’s quality of life.

Costs of Living in Florida

Having known the advantages and disadvantages of living in the Sunshine State, you may have come up with a conclusion, and if you’re planning to make a move, here are some basic costs of living you should know.

1. Housing and Renting

There are many cities in Florida having affordable options for homeowners, like Jacksonville, where the median home value is $186,519 and greater than half the city’s residents own homes.

On the opposite side, Miami may be a far more renter-centric city. Almost 70% of Miami’s residents prefer to rent, possibly because homes are costlier than other large cities within Florida. In fact, its median home value is $317,273.

Renting might be a legitimate possibility if you don’t have the funds to form a deposit yet. As per rent data calculated on March 2019 in the Apartment List, a two-bedroom apartment in Miami features a median rent of $1,355, while an equivalent apartment type in Daytona Beach features a $1,018 median rent.

In comparison, the national median rent for a two-bedroom apartment is $1,175. That positions Miami $180 above the national scale and Daytona Beach $157 below it.

2. Food

You’ll be paying a varying amount for food in Florida depending on where you live in the state.
A gallon of milk goes for $3.58 and a pound of apples is priced at $2.26 in Jacksonville. Whereas, the prices of these items are mildly lower at $3.37 and $2.17 in Sarasota, according to the statistics given by Numbeo.com in 2019.

On a bigger scale, the MIT wage calculator shows that an adult with no children in Florida will need a wage of $25,324 before taxes. Of that estimate, almost $3,000 is allocated for the acquisition of food.

3. Taxes

Taxes don’t play a big role in the costs of living in Florida. To be more exact, there’s no state tax in Florida. Plus, the typical effective land tax rate in Florida is 1.02%, which is a smaller amount than the national average.

Florida features a statewide sales tax of 6%. Some counties add their own sales tax to that 6%, from around 0.5% to 2% hike. The state in turn features a sales tax rate that maxes out at 8%, which is less than the highest rates in other big states, like California.

Having to pay high gas taxes might come off as bad news. Florida’s gas tax is 41.36 cents per gallon on regular gas, the 10th-highest within the nation. Also, there’s a special tax on alcohol. This comes bent 48 cents per gallon on beer and $6.50 per gallon on spirits.

A special tax on communications services means consumers pay 7.44% extra on all phone, internet, and tv services. Service providers bill a maximum of 5.07%, with the remaining 2.37% left for consumers to pay on their own. Floridians pay a tax of 11.44% on satellite services like DirecTV.

4. Transportation

Florida’s gas prices average $2.76 per gallon, according to GasBuddy. That’s right below the U.S. average of $2.89. As far as automobile insurance prices go, Florida has a number of the very best average rates supported by data from insure.com. The typical annual premium within the state is $2,219, or $185 per month.

Public transportation options in Florida aren’t amazing, because of Florida being a driving state. A monthly pass for the transportation system in Miami-Dade County will cost you $145, or $72.50 if you qualify for a reduced fare. A 31-day STAR card for Jacksonville’s public transportation costs just $50, with a reduced fare of $30.