7 Safest and Cheapest Cities to Live in Florida

Florida is a popular destination for many people who are looking for a sunny, warm, and affordable place to live. The Sunshine State offers a variety of attractions, from beautiful beaches and theme parks to natural wonders and cultural diversity. However, not all cities in Florida are equally affordable or safe. Some places may have high costs of living, low-quality housing, or high crime rates that make them less desirable for residents.

In this article, we will explore seven of the safest and cheapest cities to live in Florida, based on data from various sources. We will consider factors such as cost of living, median home price, average rent, crime rate, unemployment rate, and job growth outlook. We will also highlight some of the amenities and attractions that each city has to offer. These are the cities that combine low costs, high safety, and high quality of life for their residents.

1. Tavares

Tavares is a small city in Lake County, with a population of about 17,000 people. It is located about 40 miles northwest of Orlando, and it is known as the “Seaplane City” because of its seaplane base and marina on Lake Dora. Tavares has a cost of living index of 87, which is 13% lower than the national average. The median home price is $215,000, which is 16% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,050. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 15.9, which is 29% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 3.5%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 41.9%.

Tavares offers a variety of recreational and cultural activities for its residents and visitors. The city hosts several festivals and events throughout the year, such as the Tavares Seaplane Fly-In, the Tavares Dragon Boat Festival, and the Tavares Christmas Parade. The city also has a historic downtown area with shops, restaurants, and museums, as well as several parks and trails along the lakefront. Tavares is also close to other attractions in Lake County, such as the Lake County Museum of Art, the Lakeridge Winery, and the Mount Dora Historic District.

2. Ocala

Ocala is a medium-sized city in Marion County, with a population of about 63,600 people. It is located about 40 miles south of Gainesville, and it is known as the “Horse Capital of the World” because of its thriving equine industry and culture. Ocala has a cost of living index of 99, which is equal to the national average. The median home price is $274,900, which is 33% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,163. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 22.5, which is 14% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 4.1%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 39.4%.

Ocala offers a variety of outdoor and indoor activities for its residents and visitors. The city is surrounded by natural beauty, such as the Ocala National Forest, the Silver Springs State Park, and the Rainbow Springs State Park. The city also has a vibrant downtown area with shops, restaurants, and art galleries, as well as several historic landmarks, such as the Ocala Union Station, the Marion Theatre, and the Fort King National Historic Park. Ocala is also home to the College of Central Florida, the Appleton Museum of Art, and the Ocala Civic Theatre.

3. Gainesville

Gainesville is a large city in Alachua County, with a population of about 141,100 people. It is located about 70 miles southwest of Jacksonville, and it is the home of the University of Florida, the state’s flagship public university. Gainesville has a cost of living index of 101, which is 1% higher than the national average. The median home price is $282,000, which is 31% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,241. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 23.8, which is 10% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 3.2%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 38.9%.

Gainesville offers a variety of educational and cultural activities for its residents and visitors. The city is a hub of innovation and research, with the University of Florida and its affiliated institutions, such as the UF Health Shands Hospital, the UF Innovation Hub, and the Florida Museum of Natural History.

The city also has a lively downtown area with shops, restaurants, and nightlife, as well as several festivals and events, such as the Gainesville Downtown Festival and Art Show, the Hoggetowne Medieval Faire, and the Florida Gators football games. Gainesville is also close to other attractions in Alachua County, such as the Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park, the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, and the Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo.

4. Palm Bay

Palm Bay is a large city in Brevard County, with a population of about 118,100 people. It is located about 70 miles southeast of Orlando, and it is part of the Space Coast region, which is known for its aerospace and technology industries. Palm Bay has a cost of living index of 102, which is 2% higher than the national average. The median home price is $285,000, which is 30% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,275. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 24.3, which is 8% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 4.3%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 38.7%.

Palm Bay offers a variety of recreational and leisure activities for its residents and visitors. The city has over 30 parks and recreational facilities, such as the Palm Bay Regional Park, the Fred Poppe Regional Park, and the Ted Moorhead Lagoon House. The city also has a diverse and multicultural community, with events such as the Palm Bay Caribbean Festival, the Palm Bay Diwali Festival, and the Palm Bay Oktoberfest. Palm Bay is also close to other attractions in Brevard County, such as the Kennedy Space Center, the Brevard Zoo, and the Cocoa Beach Pier.

5. Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach is a medium-sized city in Volusia County, with a population of about 69,300 people. It is located about 50 miles northeast of Orlando, and it is known as the “World’s Most Famous Beach” because of its 23 miles of sandy shoreline and its history of motorsports. Daytona Beach has a cost of living index of 103, which is 3% higher than the national average. The median home price is $300,000, which is 27% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,607. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 25.8, which is 4% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 4.5%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 38.6%.

Daytona Beach offers a variety of fun and exciting activities for its residents and visitors. The city is a mecca for beach lovers and thrill seekers, with attractions such as the Daytona Beach Boardwalk and Pier, the Daytona International Speedway, and the Daytona Lagoon Water Park. The city also has a rich cultural and historical heritage, with venues such as the Museum of Arts and Sciences, the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse and Museum, and the Mary McLeod Bethune Home. Daytona Beach is also home to several colleges and universities, such as the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the Bethune-Cookman University, and the Daytona State College.

6. Leesburg

Leesburg is a small city in Lake County, with a population of about 23,700 people. It is located about 45 miles northwest of Orlando, and it is part of the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford metropolitan area. Leesburg has a cost of living index of 104, which is 4% higher than the national average. The median home price is $305,000, which is 25% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,325. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 26.2, which is 3% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 4.6%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 38.5%.

Leesburg offers a variety of outdoor and indoor activities for its residents and visitors. The city is surrounded by lakes and canals, making it a popular destination for boating, fishing, and kayaking. The city also has a historic downtown area with shops, restaurants, and museums, as well as several events and festivals, such as the Leesburg Bikefest, the Leesburg Art Festival, and the Leesburg Mardi Gras. Leesburg is also close to other attractions in Lake County, such as the Venetian Gardens, the Lake Griffin State Park, and the Leesburg International Airport.

7. Kissimmee

Kissimmee is a large city in Osceola County, with a population of about 73,900 people. It is located about 25 miles south of Orlando, and it is a popular tourist destination because of its proximity to Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, and other theme parks. Kissimmee has a cost of living index of 104, which is 4% higher than the national average. The median home price is $305,000, which is 25% below the Florida average, and the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,325. The crime rate per 1,000 residents is 26.2, which is 3% lower than the state average. The unemployment rate is 4.6%, and the 10-year job growth outlook is 38.5%.

Kissimmee offers a variety of fun and family-friendly activities for its residents and visitors. The city has a historic downtown area with shops, restaurants, and museums, as well as several events and festivals, such as the Kissimmee Festival of Lights, the Kissimmee Bluegrass Festival, and the Kissimmee PrideFest. The city also has several parks and recreational facilities, such as the Kissimmee Lakefront Park, the Kissimmee Golf Club, and the Bob Makinson Aquatic Center. Kissimmee is also close to other attractions in Osceola County, such as the Gatorland, the Osceola County Historical Society, and the Old Town.

Conclusion

Florida is a state that offers a lot of benefits for its residents, such as a warm climate, a diverse culture, and a low tax burden. However, not all cities in Florida are equally affordable or safe. Some places may have high costs of living, low-quality housing, or high crime rates that make them less desirable for residents.

In this article, we have explored 7 of the safest and cheapest cities to live in Florida, based on data from various sources. We have considered factors such as cost of living, median home price, average rent, crime rate, unemployment rate, and job growth outlook. We have also highlighted some of the amenities and attractions that each city has to offer. These are the cities that combine low costs, high safety, and high quality of life for their residents.

If you are looking for a place to live in Florida that is affordable, safe, and desirable, you may want to consider one of these 7 cities. However, before you make any final decisions, you should also do your own research and visit the cities in person to see if they suit your needs and preferences. Florida is a large and diverse state, and there may be other cities that are not on this list that may also fit your criteria. Ultimately, the best place to live in Florida is the one that makes you happy and comfortable.

Leave a Comment