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Tampa Relocation??

Hi ladies,

We initially were planning on relocating to Orlando, however due to my work situation, Tampa may be where we end up.

We have flown out to Orlando last month, but aren't familiar with Tampa. I plan on flying out in a couple weeks to check it out. Aside from the research I'm doing on Tampa, I'd love to hear your thoughts as residents.

Do you have any tips or suggestions?
Places to check out/avoid in terms of finding housing? (We  plan on renting first to learn our way around, before purchasing a home). 

What are the pros/cons about Tampa compared to Orlando in terms of:
- cost of living
- housing market
- hurricanes


Re: Tampa Relocation??

  • Hi Joelen!

    I was born and raised in tampa so I can tell you it is a great place to live! Tampa has many different areas (North, South, New, etc..) As far as comparing it to Orlando is has a lot of older charming neighborhoods vs. orlando having more new housing and subdivisions. It doesn't have near the traffic that orlando has either. The cost depends on the area and what your budget and priorities are? Where are you and your husband going to work? That may help to narrow down an area.

    I am in South Tampa (Davis Islands) which is a little more pricey but close to downtown, the airport, malls, etc. My husband and I have 3-5 minute commute apiece which is important to us so we were willing to pay more for the location. Although home prices here are plummeting so you would be moving at a perfect time!?


    Hurricanes - Tampa has never been directly hit by a hurricane. When I was younger (about 20 years ago, I am 30 now) we had one sit in the Gulf of Mexico and cause lots of rain and flooding but did not hit the area. So I would say not to worry. There is always plenty of notice that a hurricane is coming. The benefits of living here outweigh the slight possibility that a hurricane may hit someday.?

    ?Let me know if you have any more questions!?

  • The cost of living in Tampa is great compared to other big cities.  And personally, I wouldn't live it Orlando if it were free...I just couldn't deal with the tourists on a daily basis.  Definitely don't worry about hurricanes, like the pp said you get plenty of notice...and Tampa has been lucky...knock on wood.  I love the south Tampa area, however it is very prone to flooding and that can be an insurance issue.  My husband and I live in Riverview/Valrico...a suburb just east of Tampa...and it only takes me 20-25 minutes to get to downtown for work.  Another fast-growing area is the Ruskin/Apollo Beach area that is just south of Tampa...and nice driving wise b/c it has close interstate access.
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • hey Jolene!

    DH and I moved to St Pete from Minnesota, and the cost of living here compared to there is a lot higher, and finding the pay isn't as good. We live in NE st pete, and love it, I can't stand the traffic in tampa, I guess you will find ppl that live in Tampa tend to stay in tampa and ppl that live in St Pete tend to stay in st pete. The summers are 100 times hotter than up there, and the heat never goes away!!! They say you get use to it, we have been here almost 2 years and I'm still dying in the heat. haha so be prepared, sell the winter clothes ya won't need them.

    hehe If you are thinking of moving to ST Pete let me know. Or if you are in the area let me know maybe we can gtg.

  • I live in sout Tampa and love it here. I am 15 minutes from my job and could commute to St Pete, north Tampa, and anywhere in between going against the flow of rush hour traffic. Where I live we are not required to have flood insurance, which saves a ton of money. We do have it, but it's a couple hundred dollars a year, which pays for piece of mind. It's also handy if a pipe bursts in your house or if some type of flooding ever does occur.
  • Hey Joelen!  I emailed you my opinions yesterday.  Hope I can help.  I also picked up an apartment guide at the video store last night.  I could send it to you if you would like me to.  Let me know when you read my email.  Looking forward to a possible GTG with you and the other WC girls!  Kathy
  • Thanks so much ladies! Your input is so appreciated!

     I've booked my flight for Labor Day weekend and will be stay a few days after Labor Day. Since I'll be flying into Orlando and staying with my SIL, I'll be driving out a few days to check out housing and the area.

    My work office will be in Rocky Point and I'm aware of a few apartment complexes there - Post Properties has 2 complexes/subdivisions so I'm hopeful they will be decent places to live to start off. This might be our best bet since my office is less than a mile from either properties. And with us only having one car, maybe I could get away with buying a Vespa to commute to work while DH has the car for work.

    I know that Rocky Point is like a small island that is mostly businesses on it and some residential homes. Should I look elsewhere nearby or any specific thoughts on Post Properties?

    We're currently here in Chicago and are renting.... and we're not quite ready to purchase a home, despite the great deals going on with the housing market. I believe Post Properties has both a 7 and 12 month lease. We prefer to rent for a few months to start until we've acclimated to the area and find a specific neighborhood that suits our needs and interests enough to buy.

    As for the weather, we love the hot and our health actually does get better in warm weather. While we were there for a week in June, it didn't get quite hot enough for us, then again I know that the hotter months in FL usually is now... but we're ready for hot and humid. Believe it or not, we haven't installed our air conditioners in our place for 2 years because it doesn't get hot enough for us here in Chicago! I cannot wait to leave our long johns, heavy coats, books, scarves, mittens, sweatshirts, etc all behind. Put in me in flip flops and I'm a happy gal!

    I will post more details for an upcoming GTG sometime that weekend or perhaps the Tuesday night after Labor Day (Monday). I hope to meet some of you soon! :)

  • YA for scooters....haha  this is the one that i got

    www.flyscooters.com we got the black one. much cheaper than the vespa and has great reviews on scooterdawg.com haha anyway can't wait to meet you. What kind of work will you be doing when you guys get here?

  • Widdel, thanks for the scooter link!

    I will be working from home half the time and will need to be close to one of our offices. I'm in Corporate HR with a large employee benefits & insurance firm here in Chicago so I'll be coming from the firm's headquarters to work at a smaller office.

    As for my DH, he currently works for Trader Joes. Unfortunately, TJs won't be coming to Florida until 2010. There are tentative plans for opening up a TJs in the Tampa and Ft. Lauderdale areas then. But since there is no TJs, my DH will probably be a server or even try working at Whole Foods or World Market, as the type of products offered are similar to TJs. 

  • Cool I wish you guys good luck. If you need anything i will certainly try to help

    Can't wait to possibly gtg with you guys

    heather_bacon @ yahoo dot com

  • Rocky Point is a fun area, I actually got married at the Rusty Pelican which is right next to The Post.  There are a bunch of good places to eat arounf there like, Rusty Pelican, Bahama Breeze, Crabby Bills, Oystercatcher's and a few others that I can't think of the name of.  And it isn't really a residential area, but you are a hop, skip and a jump away from Kennedy Blvd. where there's a lot of stuff.
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • you mean we're supposed to get a Trader Joe's!!!! YIPEE!!!

    I'm so excited....an Ikea AND and Trader Joe's!!! :)

  • I know I am totally late to this post, but wanted to say that we are selling our house and had someone from Chicago come and look at it last weekend, and I was wondering if you would be you (since I saw your post about relocating) but didnt realise you were going to rent.


    Anyway, I think that the Post properties will be nice (my friend lived in some  while ago in another part of Tampa).  I also think that since its close to work, you would have no trouble with only one car.  That area is close to malls and lots of restaurants.  And it's also a pretty quick drive over to Clearwater Beach.


    Good luck with your move! 

  • Hi Sarah,

     No, it wasn't me. I haven't been to Tampa yet but will be visiting the weekend of Labor Day. Good luck with selling your house though!

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