Moving to Florida From Chicago

The promise of blue skies and endless sunshine is certainly appealing, especially as we get closer to fall and winter weather in Chicago. If you’re hoping to make the move from the Windy City to Florida, there are at least 10 things you need to know.

Cost of living comparison

When comparing the cost of living, it’s pretty easy to see that incomes are slightly higher across-the-board in Chicago. Depending on which part of Florida you choose and what kind of property you have your eye on, your budget may stretch a bit. In Florida, you also don’t have to worry about a state income tax.

Lower Unemployment rate

The unemployment rate in Florida is much lower than it is in Chicago. Florida is big on tourism, and even with COVID still impacting the economy, tourists continue to flock to the Sunshine State.  

Sunny skies 

Florida gets more than 200 sunny days a year, but they can’t all be perfect. Humidity is high and thunderstorms are common, especially during the summer months. On the flip side, all the “nice” days mean extra days to enjoy the beach and other outdoor adventures.

Outdoor recreation

With that in mind, outdoor recreation is big in Florida. From boating and fishing to spending time out on the sand, there’s plenty to do in Florida. Unlike living through a winter in Chicago, the state still has plenty of opportunities to get out and enjoy the natural beauty and surroundings.


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800+ miles of beaches

Speaking of, Florida has more than 800 miles of sandy beaches to explore. Sure, Chicago has some lake beaches, but they just don’t compare to the beaches of Florida, stretching from the white sand of the Emerald Coast to Southwest Florida, some of the barrier beaches to the Space Coast.

Vibrant nightlife

In terms of nightlife, it depends on, again, which part of Florida you’re interested in moving to. While Orlando is more family-centric, some of the coastal communities are more laid-back. If you’re looking for a place with great nightlife, consider the flashy clubs and diversity of Miami.

Entertainment possibilities

In terms of entertainment, the State of Florida is home to some of the world’s best theme parks. Walt Disney World and Universal are the big ones. They’re in Orlando, as is SeaWorld. The state also offers Legoland and the opportunity to swim with dolphins at Discovery Cove.

Unique locations

You can also choose from one of Florida’s truly unique destinations, like Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral. For those more interested in a natural setting, you can always get out and explore Everglades National Park. 

Public transportation

Another big difference between the two has to do with public transportation. While Chicago has a pretty extensive transportation system, options vary by region in Florida. In some locations, people can opt for a water-taxi or use their own personal boat. 

Retirement options

For those approaching their retirement years, Florida is a great place to retire. Affordable homes, lower taxes, great weather and an attractive setting all help to make Florida tops when it comes to retirees.


Posted by Helaine Cohen on
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