moving to Florida

MOVING TO FLORIDA GUIDE with Updated Checklist

Moving to Florida may be the best decision you ever make. Some people move to Florida for a new job, to start a business, or to escape freezing cold winters. But moving to Florida can be stressful without the right plan. So, careful planning is a must to make your move to FL a success.

How to prepare to move to Florida?

There are so many things to think about before moving to Florida. First, you need to start researching employment opportunities reading about different parts of the state to find the perfect city to live in. Then, you need to think about putting your home on the market, enrolling your children in a new school, scheduling movers, getting a Florida driver’s license and plates, finding a family dentist and doctor, and so goes the list of seemingly endless items on your to-do list.

What is the best time to move to Florida?

The best time to move to Florida is during the slower winter season. Moving to Florida during winter will reduce stress. In addition, if you move during winter, you might be able to negotiate a lower rate with a moving company since there will be less competition than during the busy summer months.

Also, if you want to buy a house, you might get a better deal around the holidays. With less competition to buy your Florida home, you might get a better deal.

The milder weather will also make your move easier. It’s more pleasant to move in 60-degree weather during the hot, humid months.

If you can, try to time your move to Florida to avoid moving during the busy summer season.

To help you with your move to Florida below is our updated checklist.

What do I need to know when moving to Florida?

Every year, hundreds of thousands of people move to “The Sunshine State.” That’s more than 600 people daily who choose to move to Florida, and according to some other estimates, there may be as many as 1,000 people who choose to live in the Everglade State every day.

If you’re want to become one of the more than 21 million Florida residents, you should learn a bit before your move. From the job market to schools to property prices, it’s helpful to understand some of the basics before moving to Florida.

Of course, a new city or state will have a few surprises. But, that’s part of the excitement of moving — discovering the ins and outs of a new region to make it feel like home. With a bit of research, you can make the transition smoother and more enjoyable.

If you have your eye on the beautiful state of Florida, consider the following checklist:

  • Job market
  • Cost of living
  • Housing
  • Insurance
  • Population
  • Weather

Is it worth moving to Florida?

It’s worth moving to Florida if you enjoy warm and sunny weather year-round. Are you thinking about moving to Florida? It’s not hard to see why hundreds of thousands of people want to move to Florida from New York, California and every other state. There are many reasons to make Florida your home from the sunny weather to the lack of state income tax. Its world-famous theme parks, diverse population, delectable food, sandy beaches and attractions also make it a special place to live.

Is moving to Florida expensive?

Moving to Florida doesn’t have to be expensive. The most expensive part of moving is moving your stuff to Florida. Therefore, the less stuff you want to move, the less expensive moving to Florida will be. You can drastically reduce moving expenses by reducing the amount of stuff you own.

How much does it cost to live comfortably in Florida?

If you are single, you will need about $32,000 yearly income to move to Florida. But, two adults could live comfortably on about $52,000 yearly income. And a family of four would need at least $80,000 yearly income.

Of course, you don’t need to have a year’s worth of living expenses before you move to Florida, but it would be nice. If you move with a job, you should still have at least six months of living expenses saved before your move.

moving to Florida

How much money do you need to move to FL?

You should budget for moving expenses before moving to Florida, which could be between $3,000 and $8,000.

How to find a job before moving to Florida?

Most people who move to Florida need a job. Unless you are retired or wealthy, you’ll need something to generate income. If you are moving with a job waiting for you before moving to Florida, then you are in luck! Otherwise, before moving to Florida, make sure you search and find yourself that perfect job.

If you want to make your move a success, you shouldn’t move to Florida unless you have found yourself a job. You might have to work with a recruiter to expedite your job search. Before you apply, polish your resume.

How to get a driver’s license when moving to Florida?

New residents with an out-of-state license must get a Florida driver’s license when moving to Florida. This is required within 30 days of establishing a permanent residence in Florida. Make sure you bring your driver’s license from your former state. The Florida DMV requires you to surrender your out-of-state license to obtain your Florida driver’s license.

New Florida residents with an out-of-state driver’s license must obtain a Florida driver’s license within 30 days of becoming a permanent resident in Florida. When going to the DMV, be sure to bring the driver’s license from your former state, as you will be required to surrender your current driver’s license to obtain the new license.

No written exam or road skills testing is required to change a valid out-of-state license to an FL driver’s license, but you’ll need to pass the vision test.

What paperwork is required to get a Florida driver’s license after moving?

Ensure you have all of the documentation needed for proof of identity and residency. If you are a U.S. citizen, you must provide one of the following certified or original documents:

  • Certificate of Citizenship
  • Certificate of Naturalization
  • Valid, unexpired United States passport
  • Passport Card
  • Certified United States birth certificate
  • A government agency must issue the birth certificate
  • Consular Report of Birth Abroad

What are the cons of moving to Florida?

Before moving to Florida consider the cons such as swampy weather for most of the year. If you love the beach, you probably won’t mind that hot and humid weather. But, if spending time on the beach feels like taking a nap on hot sandpaper, you might not want to move to The Sunshine State. Your air conditioner is going to run for eight or nine months every year, so consider the costs involved.

But, there are many other cons of moving to Florida:

  • Hurricane season – They say, in Florida, there are only two seasons, “tourist” and “hurricane.” During hurricane season people rush out of the state, and during the tourist season, Florida residents have to put up with horrendous traffic.
  • Tourist prices – Some Florida residents complain that businesses jack up prices during the high season. Unfortunately, as a result of high prices during the busy season, Florida residents are forced to pay “tourist” prices for everything from golf green fees and theme park access.
  • Large crowds – If you want to take a relaxing walk on the beach in the high season, you’ll have to get there by sunrise to find a parking spot.
  • Overpriced restaurants – Restaurants serving the tourist crowd aren’t concerned with quality. Especially, in the touristy areas, you’ll have to put up with large rude crowds, and overpriced restaurant food.
  • High cost of car ownership – It’s true there’s no state income tax, but the government is making up for it with expensive car registration fees. When you move to The Sunshine State, expect to pay a sales tax on your vehicle. You could pay as high as a 6% tax when moving to Florida.
  • Bugs – Cockroaches (called palmetto bugs), mosquitoes, ants, termites, and all kinds of other bugs thrive in Florida. Bugs are a fact of life in Florida, so if you can’t stand bugs, you probably shouldn’t move to Florida.

What are the pros of moving to Florida?

If you love hot, humid, beach weather, you might want to move to Florida. Florida has over 1,300 miles of coastline, making it a beach paradise.

Here are some of the pros of moving to Florida:

  • Snow and frost-free weather – If you live have lived through sub-zero winters, you will appreciate Florida weather. It’s true that Florida weather isn’t perfect. Yes, it’s hot and humid most of the year, but you never have to dig your car out from under three feet of snow after you have moved to Florida.
  • Reasonably priced real estate – Compared to New York and California, Florida real estate is affordable.  Cape Coral, Jacksonville, St. Petersburg and several other cities have up to 50% lower real estate prices than New York or California.
  • Lower cost of living – There is no income tax in Florida, making it less expensive than in other states like California or New York. In addition to lower housing costs, food also costs less than in many other areas in the U.S.
  • Amazing beaches – It’s no secret that The Sunshine State has some of the best beaches in the World.
  • Outdoor life – If you want to live an active outdoor life, living in Florida is guaranteed to get your heart rate pumping.
  • Theme parks – If you want to be near theme parks like Disney World, SeaWorld, and Universal Studios, moving to The Sunshine State might be the best decision you make.

Checklist for establishing residency in Florida

After moving to Florida, you need to establish residency. The following checklist should help you establish residency in Florida:

  • If you are moving for work, accept employment.
  • If you have school-age children, enroll them in a Florida school.
  • Notify USPS of your Florida address.
  • Register to vote.
  • Get your Florida driver’s license. You should do this in 30-days. Check with the Florida DMV for more details.
  • Register your out-of-state car with the Florida DMV.

Can I bring my guns when moving to Florida?

You can bring your gun when moving to Florida, but you should understand the gun laws.

Moving with guns to Florida

Florida has reciprocity agreements with thirty-four U.S. states, including bordering states Alabama and Georgia. The State of Florida will only honor resident concealed weapon (CCW) licenses if you are moving from one of the states Florida has a reciprocity agreement. Those with and without a concealed carry license can possess a firearm in the Sunshine State as long as they are 21 years old (or a member of the military or an honorably discharged veteran) and not otherwise prohibited from carrying a gun. Before moving to Florida with a firearm, check with the state of Florida for a complete list of carry license information.

Moving to Florida from California

Florida and California have a lot of sunshine, with some of the best beaches in the United States with warm climates. So, it isn’t a surprise that many people residing in California consider moving to Florida.

Many people confuse the Sunshine State (Florida) with the Golden State (California). Although there are some similarities, there are huge differences between the two states. And if you want your move from California to Florida to be a success, you should know the differences. Moving from one coast of the U.S. to another is a big decision. So, before you move to Florida, consider some of the differences:

California Florida
Job Market Stronger economy with many high-paying jobs. The median household income is about $67,000. The median household income is about $57,000.
Housing Median home prices are about $700,000. Median home prices are about $300,000.
Weather California has the best weather in the U.S. Especially, the coastal areas have year-round mild weather.  Florida’s subtropical weather can be unbearable for much of the year if you are not used to hot, humid weather.
Cost of living California, especially the large metropolitan areas of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego, are among the most expensive in America. California has some of the highest taxes in the U.S. Except for Miami, Florida is considered one of the low-cost areas in the U.S. With median home prices of about $300,000, Florida is much more affordable. No state income tax in Florida.

Moving to Florida from New York

It’s fairly common for New Yorkers to think about moving to Florida. So, if you’ve decided to make a move from New York to Florida, you should understand the pros and cons. After all, Florida is so much more than the “Sunshine State.”

New Yorkers moving to Florida get to trade freezing cold winters with a yearly average of 237 days of sunshine. If you aren’t impressed yet, perhaps loads of outdoor attractions, lower cost of living, and world-class beaches will. Florida offers a myriad of things to do and can be a great lifestyle change from the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple. This will, however, be a significant change, so here are a few tips to help with your relocation.

Moving to Florida from New York for the Great Weather

Many people who move to Florida from New York want to escape the brutal winters. Florida is nicknamed “The Sunshine State” for a reason. It’s warm and sunny most days. You can read about the humidity, but you need to experience it to believe it.

For many people, the hot, humid Florida weather is unbearable. So, before you move to Florida from New York, you should spend at least once summer season to make sure you can handle it. Then, rent an apartment or a house for a year to experience the humidity and life before moving to Florida.

Before you say “goodbye” to long winters and shoveling snow, make sure you don’t trade for one uncomfortable weather for another.

Moving to Florida from New York to Save Money

If you are moving to Florida from New York City, you’ll find that the cost of living is dramatically cheaper. Even the most expensive cities in Florida are cheaper than living in Manhattan. In fact, the median home cost in Miami is $500,000 while Manhattan is a staggering $1,000,000. That means Manhattan is 50% more expensive than Miami. In addition to cheaper real estate, Florida doesn’t have a state income tax, allowing residents to save money after relocating from New York.

Move to Florida from New York for the Beautiful Beaches

The Jersey Shore is great, but the beaches in Florida are exceptional. Even if you live in inland Florida, the amazing beaches are never far away. Florida residents have year-round access to some of the best and most amazing beaches. Some of these award-winning beaches include Miami Beach, Sarasota’s Siesta Beach, Pensacola Beach, Delray Beach, Grayton Beach, and Clearwater Beach, just to name a few.

Moving to Florida from New York City for activities

Thanks to its climate, Florida residents have plenty of opportunities to spend time outdoors boating, swimming, fishing, relaxing on the beach, or scuba diving. Florida residents also have easy access to world-famous attractions, including Sea World, Universal Studios, and Disney World in Orlando.

In south Florida, you can explore the Florida Keys, Everglades National Park, and experience some of the best fishing in the U.S. Miami’s art deco district is also filled with exhilarating nightlife, incredible restaurants, and upscale shopping. If that’s not enough, sports lovers will have their fill cheering on the state’s many professional sports teams.

The following two tabs change content below.
George Meszaros is the editor and co-founder of Success Harbor where entrepreneurs learn about building successful companies. Success Harbor is dedicated to document the entrepreneurial journey through interviews, original research, and unique content. George Meszaros is also co-founder of Webene, a web design and digital marketing agency.