11 Reasons I Regret Moving to Florida
If you are planning to spend your retirement days in Florida and take advantage of the robust economy then you might choose Florida.
But, ask yourself if only affordability will bring you happiness. Or, a busy, crowded, and hectic state will give you happiness?
There are many cities in Florida that are growing very fast. Still, there are challenges of living in Florida.
Florida is the seventh most populous state in the United States of America.
I know the Disneyworld and a little child fantasy inside you always made you shift to Florida, it did to me.
The Sunshine State experiences a tropical type of climate and is home to various flora and fauna with beautiful dog-friendly beaches in Florida. Miami and Tallahassee were my dream places.
This sunshine state always felt like a rosy Disney world to me. But, the truth is I regret moving to Florida.
Here is my story and I will tell you why I hate living in Florida after 1.5 years of living there.
Therefore, I will explain to you why I hate living in Florida and give you the reasons not to move to Florida.
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Table of Contents
Where is Florida and Why Have I Always Wanted to Move There?
Living in Florida has many advantages and disadvantages. It sits in the Southeastern region of the United States and is bordered by the Gulf of Mexico in the west, Alabama in the North-West, Georgia in the North, Bahamas, and the Atlantic Ocean in the east, and the Straits of Florida and Cuba in the south.
Apart from its Disney World, the beautiful landscape and its location always captivated me to spend days there. I wanted to spend and experience the charming winters and witness the picturesque natural springs in Florida.
I have always seen photos on Google of how beautiful pine forests and Palmetto palms look like in Florida. Its wildflowers, wild blackberries, rosemary, and coastal dune lakes… These views are truly breathtaking.
Couples also love this state as there are plenty of romantic places in Florida with amazing coral reefs, underwater caves, islands, and swimming holes. Yes, Florida is not only for children but also welcomes adults of all ages.
I was so fascinated and always wanted to move to Florida but once I did I got the real picture. There are a lot of bad things about Florida too which people don’t mention.
I will give you the reasons why people regret moving to Florida:
Reasons Not to Move to Florida
Do you know when you experience the true feeling towards a place or a person? And get the actual picture to be like. When the honeymoon phase is gone, during the first few months you love everything around you but once the period is gone you experience true feelings.
Moving to Florida can be accompanied by a host of unforeseen issues that individuals may not anticipate. From the high cost of living and extreme weather conditions to challenges like traffic congestion and limited job opportunities, these factors can present unexpected obstacles for newcomers.
Here are the reasons why you shouldn’t move to Florida:
1. Crowded with Tourists All Over The Year:
No matter how much I like the freshwater springs of Orlando, I regret moving to Orlando; this place is so packed up with tourists that I always regret moving to Florida, Orlando. No less than 100 million people come here to spend their weekends and the roads and airports are always busy. You can read our 24 hours in Orlando itinerary if you’re planning to visit this place.
The main Central highway in Florida 1-4 which starts from Daytona Beach in the East through Orlando and ends in Tampa on the West is always full of people and traffic. I-95 which is around Miami is the most crowded and hectic place in Florida.
Traffic was a common thing in Orlando. Every day I have to spend more than 30 minutes sitting in the car hearing the honking sound while returning to my apartment from my office. And needless to say that the theme park was always full of tourists and people.
2. Environmental Concerns
This is another downside of living in Florida. Florida’s distinct ecosystems and citizens’ wellbeing are both affected by serious environmental issues. Rising sea levels pose a particular threat, as the state is predominantly low-lying, with densely populated coastal areas. As sea levels increase, Florida experiences increased coastal erosion, saltwater intrusion into freshwater sources, and a higher risk of storm surge damage during hurricanes.
Another pressing problem is the quality of the water. Harmful algal blooms, such as red tide and blue-green algae, have become more frequent, leading to fish kills, marine life die-offs, and respiratory issues for humans. The state’s important economic engine, the tourism sector, may be impacted by the deterioration of the water quality.
The Everglades and other unique ecosystems in Florida are in danger from habitat loss and fragmentation brought on by urbanization, agriculture, and invasive species. In addition to their inherent importance, these ecosystems also support biodiversity and essential functions like water filtering and flood control, thus protecting them is essential.
Coordinated efforts are needed to address these environmental issues, including sustainable development practices, coastal management plans, and improvements to water quality. Florida may seek to preserve its natural treasures for future generations and mitigate the possible effects of environmental degradation by prioritizing conservation and sustainability.
3. Why is Florida Called the “Sunshine State”?
My skin got miserable living in Florida, the weather and climate here are so harsh and warm that they burnt out my skin. I felt like I’m put inside a micro oven at 90 degrees Celsius. Yes, it’s that much hot.
You will experience 2 distinct seasons in Florida. Firstly, the Monsoon in August lasts for only 150 days out of 365 days. And second, the warm hot climate. The climatic condition in Florida is tropical, making it humid and hot.
In the summer season, Florida does experience rain showers and thunderstorms but it lasts only for a few minutes. I remember my office days when I had to move out of my house and the heatwave used to burn my skin.
There are so many reasons that I regret moving to Florida.
4. Affordable Places to Visit in Florida is a Myth:
Do you get excited seeing ads on television broadcasting how cheap Florida is? It’s all marketing my friend. You have to believe me in this, I also got trapped in their marketing advertisements. I might say, Florida was affordable back in the 1990s but not now.
The general living cost in Florida is higher than the average standard of living in the United States of America. Houses here are not that affordable, you have to earn a lot to afford a decent standard of living.
My family and I were not able to buy a house in Miami because the standard of living is very high and expensive. This is one of the prime reasons for not moving to Florida.
But don’t worry. If you have already decided to move to Florida whatsoever reason, there are still some affordable places to live in Florida. Fort Meade is a great place that you can always choose. It is 50 miles away from Tampa and one of the rural parts of Florida. But, worry not this place offers great job opportunities and affordable grocery shopping too.
5. Get Cautious about Tornadoes and Hurricanes:
Tornadoes and hurricanes pose significant drawbacks to consider when contemplating a relocation to Florida. This is another worst thing in Florida. From June to November there is always a fear among Floridians. We all know how badly Hurricane Charley hit Florida in 2004. Thousands of people have damaged their life and property.
How can you forget about the Earthquake and blizzard? I still get to hear stories from people who were present at that particular time. Such stories are so frightening to hear, I don’t know how they are leaving up with such daunting memories.
6. Lack of Cultural Diversity
Having lived in Florida for several years, I have personally observed a lack of cultural diversity in certain areas of the state. While Florida is often celebrated for its melting pot of cultures, there are pockets where a dominant culture prevails, overshadowing the presence of other ethnic groups.
In my experience, I have noticed that some smaller towns and more rural areas have a limited representation of diverse cultures. The local community tends to adhere to traditional customs and norms, making it challenging to find a wide range of cultural experiences. This lack of diversity can be felt in social interactions, community events, and even in the local cuisine offerings.
The lack of cultural diversity has occasionally disappointed me as someone who appreciates cultural interchange and accepts different viewpoints. But it’s vital to recognize that Florida is a large and diverse state and that there are places where ethnic variety flourishes, especially in urban centers and more cosmopolitan regions.
This divide can be closed and Florida can become a more culturally vibrant state for all people through initiatives to promote inclusivity, appreciate different cultures, and foster cross-cultural connections.
7. Too Many People Than You Ever Imagined:
In 2018, when I moved to Florida, their data showed that 65.5 million people moved in and it was no more a quiet place but a place of huge people.
People from New York, California, and Texas visit here and it has increased its annual growth rate of 2.5 % above the national average.
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8. Urbanization and Its Effects:
Why moving to Florida was a flop idea of mine? Excessive urbanization and suburban sprawl have adversely affected the place. As per the data it shows after Texas, Florida is the most populated state. This state is continuously growing outward.
If its growth was planned then it might not be a problem but Florida is expanding unmanageably and this has adversely affected its ecology and natural resources.
Heavy traffic, overuse of land, and improper public transportation make me wonder why I stayed in Florida for 2 years.
9. Bugs, Insects, and Reptiles are Your Home Visitors:
Ahh! The most annoying thing is bugs which from nowhere buzz around your ears giving you an awful feeling. If they bite you then I can guarantee you will get a high temperature. Flying bugs are the worst nightmare I had in Florida.
Mosquitoes, deer flies, wolf spiders, lovebugs, palmetto bugs, Florida carpenter ants, red fire ants, and a lot more are unwelcome guests in your house. Once, a bug bit my mother and we had to take her to the hospital. It’s that dangerous.
If you are wondering, is it a bad idea to move to Florida? Then you should know my story. One fine morning I made a cup of coffee for myself and went to my backyard. What I saw there I won’t forget in my entire life. A huge python was crawling in my garden.
10. Global Warming is a Serious Issue in Florida:
Did you wonder why New Yorkers are moving to Florida nowadays? Florida has no policy for personal income tax and hence everyone is moving out to Florida. And, this has adversely affected the place naturally.
In 2020, data shows that there is a huge rise in sea level and this is a huge threat to people living near the sea. The price of the properties near the sea has immensely dropped down to 8 % -10 % compared to areas interior to the coastal area.
Global Warming has increased more natural disasters like hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, and unpredictable weather changes. The sweltering weather and humid climate are so much pain to bear.
11. Did you know what a sinkhole is?
This is another worst reason not to live in Florida if you are aware of the sinkhole. Okay, if you don’t know it then give me a chance to explain it to you.
A sinkhole is a hole that suddenly opens up in the ground. These holes sometimes are so huge that they can engulf a car, a property, or a whole colony. You can find hundreds of YouTube videos regarding this.
Due to the Florida Aquifer, such a sinkhole occurs. The underground is filled up with porous limestone which is a natural cache for rainwater. As the population grows, more water is taken from the Aquifer as this is the only source of clean drinking water. And such sinkholes grow.
Pros and Cons of Living in Florida in a Nutshell:
- You can grow oranges in your yard
- You can get a house within your budget
- You can enjoy calm air and great pictures with palm trees
- You can enjoy pool bathe whenever you want
- There are countless places in Florida to celebrate Christmas
- Great news for students! If you want to widen your knowledge and conduct research then the University of Florida is the best place to study.
- I regret moving to Florida because my house was near the coast and when I planned to move out from Florida the price dropped down.
- Swimming is great to hear but do you want to swim when the temperature is 38 degrees Celsius?
- The hot and humid climate is enough to keep you sick all-round the year. This was the very reason not to move to Florida.
- I didn’t have to pay state income tax, true but I have to pay tons of money for my driver’s license. In Florida, you have to pay for everything. You have to pay at the parking station by the hour.
- If you are wondering if it is safe to move to Florida then I bet you bear, alligator, snakes and all the fearful reptiles can visit your house.
- If you are planning to retire to Florida then ask yourself are you able to deal with bees and bugs?
- You may find the cheapest cities to visit in Florida but if you want peace surrounding valleys, and mountains then this is not the place for you.
Therefore, there are benefits of living in Florida but with that, you have to accept its flaws too. This place will not only give you worse and good memories too.
If you ask me if I regret moving to Florida then my answer will be yes. This place’s weather was too harsh for my skin, I didn’t get a good job and my pay scale was even low compared to New York and there was always a fear of natural disasters and reptiles.
Remember, if you are moving to Florida and searching for an affordable place then it’s very important for you to do great research and come up with the best places which are cheap and safe for you to live in. You can also check out the ultimate moving to Florida checklist.
Places like Fort Lauderdale, Tallahassee, and Jacksonville are one of those places where the crime rate is high. I’m sure you don’t want to get robbed or die in search of the cheapest place. No matter what you should always avoid these dangerous places in Florida.
Therefore, do your research wisely and come to this place and draw your own memories.
Read Other Florida Posts:
- 10 Most Popular Places to Live in Florida
- Top 10 Places to Live on The Gulf Coast of Florida
- 7 Best Towns To Live In Northern Florida
- 10 Best Campgrounds in Florida for Camping
FAQs: Regret Moving to Florida
1. What’s bad about living in Florida?
A: The worst thing about living in Florida is its humid tropical climate. It’s very hot and the heatwave during afternoons feels like they are piercing your body in and out.
2. What is the safest area to live in Florida?
A: In my opinion, Weston is the safest area to live in Florida. It has a high quality of living which I always dreamt of and is less crowded.
3. What do you need to move to Florida?
A: You first need a job or a bank account which has a lot of cash and then you can enjoy the beauty of the place. You have to pay for your property, insurance, buy food and maintain a standard of living.
4. What should I know before moving to Florida?
A: Before moving to Florida, I would recommend you do a bit of research. I have mentioned to you all the adverse effects of the place. If you are a digital nomad, then please think before coming to this place. This place can be expensive.
5. Can I move to Florida without a job?
A: Yes, you can move to Florida without a job. But your bank account should have the cash to afford your lifestyle.
6. Do retirees regret moving to Florida?
A: In my opinion, the accurate answer is yes. Retirees want a peaceful place but Florida is a lot more crowded.
I deeply regret moving to Florida for most of these reasons you listed. I have been here for 1 year and just want to leave now. I am sick of the sun and heat, it’s overkill at this point. The traffic here is just as bad as up North but you have to drive even further to get anywhere. I can see Florida being fine if you are retired or don’t really need to or care about making a decent living. The cost of housing is obscene and the pay scale is the worst I ever encountered in my life.
People want you to work for cheap down here and just write off the rest as the ‘cost for living in paradise’. To each his own but this place is more like purgatory than paradise.
Thank you Gianna for sharing your experience.
I’ve been here 2 years and I regret it. The people are the rudest I’ve ever encountered, the roads are crowded, the stores are crowded and people don’t know how to drive. There have been more hit and run car accidents with in a 2 mile radius in these two years than my entire lifetime in a Northern state. Insurance is insanely expensive, health, auto and homeowners. The pay is borderline slavery, even for a professional with a degree. Luckily I bought a house before I moved , when prices were low, but when prices drop back in my home state, I will be moving out of this.
You took the words right out o do my mouth. Florida is ok to vacation in, but living here is nothing but a money pit. I’m trying to get my wife to move back to Iowa where the cost of living is way less than Florida.
I completely agree on all and there is even more to talk about
Go back up north I-95 runs north, don’t come back. All true Natives of FL will appreciate it. People come here and want it to be like back home, it isn’t thank God.
Typical Florida ignorance
Yeah – she thinks she’s a native. Ask a *real* native how they feel about Florida today
I agree!!! It’s especially gotten awful during Covid!!
Try experiencing the heat in Atl… with basically no water. My best to you, get a RV and moving around, you can work from home in ur RV from any state u choose.
Exactly, if you dont like it somewhere, go back to where ever it is you belong. 🙂
People don’t know where they belong anymore. Much more of the country and world have become overcrowded, crazy, fearful, hostile, expensive, transient, and dangerous. Also, if you need a job instead of having your own business, forget it. Businesses pay ALAP (as little as possible) now, and few offer good benefits or retirement plans, if any.
The weather sucks in NY. My skin is cracked from freezing. The traffic is gross on the belt and van suck any time of day. Crowded -you can’t compare it to NY. Please!
Crime is everywhere so that’s out- I’ll take lizards over insects anyway. The country is all insects. Live by the beach the breeze will keep them moving. The only truth is the summers are terribly hot especially if you are not use to them. You need to be financial equip and/or land a job before you get there. No skills-no money! I agree the pay scale sucks and doesn’t sinc with the cost of living as claimed but overall I would chose to visit NYC as a summer bird and leave it behind for the rest of the year. Need NY theater-hop a flight for a weekend and then run-out!
I’m still stuck here and prepping to leave!
Thank you Chicky for sharing your experience.
Is there a nice area in northern Florida to retire to? We are looking to retire to northern Florida, but don’t need all the attractions and people of Miami. Thanks Bernie
Hi Bernie, Gainesville can be a perfect place for you. We have a detailed post on the best places to retire in Florida.
Avoid south Florida like the plague. The area from Palm Beach to the keys became an overcrowded, overtrafficked, crazy, expensive, violent, crime-filled nightmare. Also, all cities and urban areas nationwide became bad.
Avoid North as well. A lot of mouth breathers.
My God, reading that hurt my brain.
I lived in Florida for 27 years and hated every moment of it. When I moved to New Jersey, I doubled my salary. No bugs in the house in Jersey and thunderstorms are rare. Yes it snows but I prefer that to 9 months of unending heat and humidity. The people are nicer up north and they aren’t topless bars all over the place here.
Accurately observed and said. 60 years ago Florida , California, and other warm, once-desirable states were reasonably populated, affordable, and friendly. Then they went increasingly bad. Way too many humans, cars, morons, punks, thugs, illegal aliens, non-English speakers, hostility, and crime now. Jersey is a good place with good, friendly people. Best solution – live “up north” from May through October, and in an uncrowded tropical area from November through April. Or at least take several vacations in the winter to tropical areas.
I wish people took your advice and stopped moving here. I live in Sarasota and ever since Covid EVERYONE from New York, Illinois, California, ETC are moving here and buying houses with cash and taking up a lot of the rentals in the meantime. Prices with housing has since then increased to outrageous amounts as well as rent. So now for locals like myself, we have a hard time buying and renting! I wish I could move, but my husband’s whole family are all Sarasota natives, and he also has a very good job and has been moving up in positions every year or so. Wish us natives good luck! LOL
California was once desirable, like Florida, but way too many humans moved to both states and ruined them. Also, Latins and Asians took over California. Fed up Americans are starting to move to small-to-medium size towns in states like Missouri, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas, and other countries.
We are feeling your pain in Huntsville Alabama. A house that cost $125k a year ago is now $300k. Rent went from $850 mo to $1600 mo. My 15 minute commute is now 35 min. I miss my little city.
I see the trend in the comments! In simple, if moving to Florida, make sure you have a large bank account and a good job awaiting you, upon arrival. This will insure for a comfortable transition, into the culture and lifestyle. This can be a beautiful experience, if you relocate to Florida, with a substantial amount of money in the bank and a good job! For those who decide to relocate to Florida without a substantial bank account and a good job, prepare for struggles in life; your opinion of Florida will change forever, and you will find yourself in this forum leaving comments complaining about how awful Florida is, because of poor judgment to move to Florida without doing proper research, being prepared financially and not having a career that can sustain a comfortable lifestyle.
It’s interesting that I don’t hear progressive individuals complaining about Florida, and why is that?! It’s simple, they prepared before they relocated. They thought of all aspects before making the move. Moral to the story; make sure you can afford the lifestyle before relocating; or you will become miserable within a year and hate Florida, that you once thought was paradise!
You summed it up well Mikel.
Well said and right on. Today you need a LOT of money to move to most parts of America. Don’t even think of moving without a LOT of money. If you run out of money and have to take low-paying survival jobs, you’ll hate it – and never get ahead financially again. This happens to millions of people who move. You’ll be stuck on a hamster wheel from hell till you get a high-paying job or start a profitable business.
These people are trying to discourage more people from moving there. It’s obvious but guess what that’s what we tried in California and it didn’t work . Not only is it way overpopulated and overpriced it’s a crap show of homelessness crime and ridiculously expensive housing . So get ready here they come . Sorry California native got jipped 😫😫
Right. Millions of people who moved to California and Florida without a LOT of money got into trouble. Unless you have a high-paying job lined up before you move, and a LOT of money to bring with you, don’t move until you have these things.
Being a native Floridian I’ve heard many of the very same complaints from many. Florida isn’t for everyone. Yes, over the decades i’ve watched many of the problems mentioned develop and grow beyond control. Once an area that has that perfect landscape and population density secret gets out, within 5 years it becomes a construction nightmare and overpopulates rapidly. Raised in Tampa I moved to Pasco county to escape the overcrowding and higher housing costs and found nice homes for cheaper costs. Then people started finding out and i’ve watched Paradise lost once again as it did where I grew up. It’s sad but it’s a fact of life here. No place is perfect and I surely wouldn’t move to the snow belt dealing with snow and cold 7 months out of the year. I’m content with shorts and short sleeves and the A/C to keep me comfortable and as for going out, so many places have delivery and lets face it, many don’t go to malls anymore and other things because of online services. You won’t find happiness by photos. I’ve met Florida newbies who are overjoyed to be here and others who hate it. It’s not for everyone. But every state has it’s negatives. Many listed in this review I disagree are issues simply because i’m born and raised and lived here most of my life. Sorry it didn’t work out for you!
We moved here and we hate it! Trying to leave ASAP- we don’t need encouragement on that so save it. It’s expensive! Good luck finding passable medical and dental- it’s AWFUL! The insurance here is grotesque- home and car! Your 80 and get a license for EIGHT years and you can’t see or hear- WTF?! No inspection sticker- you can’t believe what’s on the road here- legally. Transients and awful customer service! The elderly drivers and the drunks. Way to many racists rednecks. Hot all the time! Bugs with their own zip codes. Lazy people complaining all day long- Trump won you know! The elderly complaining all day long about EVERYTHING and EVERYONE else. The rudeness and the all about me attitudes suck the life out of you daily. The political BS is insane as is the MANY who follow it and actually BELIEVE it! The Bible thumpers are no better! This was the LAST pick on our list when moving. Covid killed our TOP 4 other states. Things have calmed down so we are hitting Zillow. I can’t wait to leave and I pray every day it’s sooner rather than later! U want to vacation- enjoy. But, live here I advise not too. Take the locals advice-they don’t want you either- STAY AWAY you will be happier- truly.
I’m in the same boat and couldn’t agree more. If I were a native, I would hope that people left. I’ve only been here 6 months and I am looking for a way to break my lease. I absolutely hate it here! And I did check it out before I came because my daughter has lived here forever 3 years. Still, you simply can’t find out certain things until you live here and experience it fully.
Too many people! Too hot (I thought I hated the cold, but never again!), you have the rich and you have the service people, there is no middle class here (Sarasota), my auto insurance doubled, my rent nearly tripled (though it would have not been as bad without the housing bubble…though still worse than Illinois), I needed a mechanic and after going through 4 different mechanics, I just ended up trading my car in…they were all outrageously priced, it’s just crowded….I feel squished (where I lived in Illinois, I had wide open spaces with lots of room).
No need for anyone here to tell me to “move back then”…believe me, I am!!!
I moved here to help my daughter because she runs her own business and I’m able to work remotely. So, I didn’t “want” to move here…I felt a kind of obligation. Oh well, that has changed..and dramatically. I will never make this mistake again!!!
I fear even coming here for vacation has been ruined for me.
I’m still trying to figure out just what people love about it. There has not been one person who hasn’t said to me, “oh, you’re going to love it here.”
I even pray, please let me love it…
But, I hate it more every day.
I can’t wait to get back to the big tall trees, wide open spaces, crisp clear air, affordable mechanics and rent, and of course back to my friends! I will never complain about the cold or snow again!!! I promise!
Best of luck! I know your pain daily! Chin up- you will escape soon enough. Hopefully, we will too- 1 year more- hopefully less.
I wanted to move to a warmer location, from Md. ,decided not to move to Florida, too humid, way to many bugs. We decided to move to Arizona, best decision ever. Sunshine almost every day! Temperatures are high in the summer months, but the low humidity makes it easier, and you are in places with AC most of the time anyway.
The desert is beautiful and the people are so welcoming.
One lady remarked about swimming when it’s 88 degrees Celsius. Well that’s about 162 Fahrenheit.
This is a great article. Yes, please stay away from Florida, it stinks! Stay where you are, no reason to come here.
Thank you for posting, gives me some insight.
Guess the others haven’t traveled much across the country.
Housing market has BOOMed everywhere! Pay scales increased a bit but and all cites beautiful areas are crowed, expensive as heck and consistently have in influx for travelers.
If you don’t have a pocket full, go to the middle of nowhere.
We are in the middle of no where- it’s called Northern Flo RA Da! The further North you go- the more Southern it becomes.
I lasted three months in Florida and getting the hell out of it. Cost of living is expensive and they don’t want to pay you accordingly. I can make way more money elsewhere. Also, I have never seen a huge amount of morons as in Florida. Stupidity of people here is overwhelming. Is there some inbreeding going?
We always thought about Florida to retire. Loved to vacation there. We could afford Florida too (we have plenty of money) but I need wide open spaces and gentleman farms and small town life. I found it in Cape May, NJ. Never moving, even with cold winters.