Money Ranks 3 Fla. Cities 'Best Places to Live

Tampa, Altamonte Springs and Sarasota make Money.com’s top 50 "Best Places to Live in the U.S." for 2022-23.

TAMPA, Fla. — Three Florida cities were recently ranked among the best places to live in the United States, according to a new list from Money.com.

Money said it looked at economic opportunities, quality of life, diversity, and where the best futures lie to come up with the top 50 cities in America.

Three Florida cities made the list: Tampa (No. 9), Altamonte Springs (No. 33) and Sarasota (No, 43).

Sarasota

Money called Sarasota a “paradise for beach, culture and wildlife lovers.”

“Sunbathers can enjoy sandy stretches on nearby Siesta Key (which has a thriving social scene — ever seen that MTV reality show?) and Longboat Key (where hundreds of sea turtles lay their eggs every year). Art fans won't feel out of place, either. Sarasota boasts the Ringling Museum, a museum built by circus operator John Ringling and his wife in the 1920s. Styled after the Uffizi in Florence, Italy, the museum is home to pieces from artists like Peter Paul Rubens as well as a massive courtyard filled with bronze cast statues — including a replica of Michelangelo's David,” Money reported.

A downside to Sarasota is that the homes are expensive. Money's data showed that the median home sale price in 2022 was over $568,000.

Money said the population in Sarasota tends to be older and less diverse than neighboring Tampa.

Quick facts about Sarasota:

  • Population: 56,115
  • Median household income: $64,142
  • Median home price: $368,733
  • Unemployment rate: 2.6%

Tampa

Money said Tampa is “a rare combination of action-packed and affordable.” The report said median home sales in the city are about $381,000, which is one of the lowest on the list.

“There's nightlife galore in the Ybor City district. Tampa's 20- and 30-somethings also flock to spots like Angry Chair Brewing, which serves its famous stouts alongside kitchen faves like pickle dip, and Taco Bus, which was dishing burritos out of its yellow school bus way before food trucks were cool,” Money reported.

The downsides of living in Tampa are the traffic and climate, which Money said is “sweltering and hurricane-prone in the summer.”

“If you can stand the heat — pun intended — you'll benefit,” Money said.

Quick facts about Tampa:

  • Population: 379,742
  • Median household income: $70,145
  • Median home price: $381,352
  • Unemployment rate: 2.7%

Altamonte Springs

Altamonte Springs, which is about 30 minutes from Disney World and an hour to the beach, was the second Florida city ranked on Money's list.

Money said Altamonte Springs “doesn't feel overly busy” and the cost of living is “pretty average” when compared with the other places on the list.

“Central Florida is prone to hurricanes and political turmoil, but on the plus side, it doesn't charge a state income tax,” Money said.

Another perk about Altamonte Springs is that the area boasts a nearly 93% high graduation rate, according to Money. The report said the residents enjoy a good mix of recreation and education.

Quick facts about Altamonte Springs

  • Population: 44,383
  • Median household income: $62,762
  • Median home price: $210,105
  • Unemployment rate: 2.7%

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