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Ft. Myers
Old 01-08-2021, 05:38 PM   #61
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Ft. Myers

We have stayed several winters in Ft. Myers and have enjoyed it. Also know several couples that have stayed several different condos in Florida and they say that Ft. Myers is the best for weather, friendly people and getting around. Get a real estate agent and visit several places. Summerland Rd. South is a good area. Don’t buy, lease yearly. You will have about ten years to enjoy before you move back home to be with you kids.
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:04 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by Silver View Post
One way to start looking at over 55 communities in Florida is to use "55 Plus Places". It's a site that can be searched country-wide, and it provides community-specific websites.
There are also reviews by residents, as well as homes for sale. Contacting one of the realtors listed may lead you to rentals as well.

https://www.55places.com/
I like https://www.floridaforboomers.com/ . Lots of great info and comparisons between locations.
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:11 PM   #63
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My wish list looks a lot like yours. I'm not ready to make a move yet but I'm looking at Solvita in Poinciana as I want a place with a lot of activities and it seems to have a more balanced mix of views than some of the other larger communities. I don't plan on driving a lot so I figure I can deal with the traffic a couple of times a month.
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:24 PM   #64
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I think NE Florida fits all of your requirements. Jax-St.Augustine-Daytona area
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:25 PM   #65
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I live in St. Petersburg and I think that matches what you are looking for pretty well
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:47 PM   #66
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Where I currently work in Florida this is what they tell us to expect. Ground has been broken and roads are going in.
https://www.emeraldlakesflorida.com/...lery-c9431b7-1
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:06 PM   #67
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Where I currently work in Florida this is what they tell us to expect. Ground has been broken and roads are going in.
https://www.emeraldlakesflorida.com/...lery-c9431b7-1
No Way! Way too far inland. All Florida is fine but the Beaches are far better. YMMV.
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:12 PM   #68
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No Way! Way too far inland. All Florida is fine but the Beaches are far better. YMMV.
Not on the beach but pretty darn close darn close to the beach.
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:48 PM   #69
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:48 PM   #70
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I lived in Florida for 12 years. I lived in St Petersburg. For me, I do not plan on moving back. I enjoy an occasional visit in the winter. I do not miss hot summers, tourists int he winters, fleas year around, huge cockroaches, traffic, constant change of neighbors, etc. I am glad I lived there for a time. People are people wherever, and there are plenty of things to do. The better retirement communities have activities, etc. I thought the traffic in the Tampa Pay area bad, as is the traffic in the Orlando area. If I were to do it again, I will pick a smaller town more inland. I never went and laid on the beach, and St. Petersburg beach has people coming all over the world to visit. Occasionally my wife would walk the beach on a Saturday or Sunday in the off season and eat at one of the places near the beach. Lots of touristy type things there. We had one hurricane in the 12 years we were there and not real bad, but they can be. Hurricanes can be widespread and impact a lots of people. Taste vary so much I cannot give you much advice beyond take a good long look at what you might want. I have friends in Florida and they enjoy it. I prefer to just visit in the winter and come back "home" for the other 9 months. So far, I have not even done that in my retirement, and may not. Wish you the best.
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:54 PM   #71
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I have lived in FLA for 3 years and never seen one cockroach or palmetto bug. I believe this mention is overstated.
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My two cents
Old 01-08-2021, 07:55 PM   #72
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My two cents

I have lived in Florida since 1991, and as a retired Sales rep, have spent time virtually in all parts of the state...we bought a modest home in a 55+ community in Flagler Beach, which is 30 miles S of St. Augustine, 1 hr south of Jacksonville, 1.5 hrs NE of Orlando...we LOVE IT. Palm Coast is the community right over the bridge on the mainland, another very nice area. I lived in Miami for 15 years, Clermont for 5, Sanford for 5 and have spent significant time on the west coast for work...the one "downside" is that we are in a mandatory evacuation zone when there is a named hurricane because we are across the street from the beach, but we just plan accordingly.
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Living the Dream
Old 01-08-2021, 08:56 PM   #73
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Living the Dream

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Originally Posted by SunnyOne View Post
I'm on the Gulf coast of FLA, snowbirding as transition to full retirement come this spring (April timeframe). This is a good temp stay, but don't see establishing myself on the Panhandle for various reasons.

I would really appreciate your suggestions as to areas, towns, retirement communities, whatever you suggest!

I would like to rent in FLA for a couple of years while deciding whether to buy a permanent home or even retire somewhere else...but I need a landing spot to begin with.

I am familiar with various parts of the state, but for short trips, no long hauls.

Here's my WISH list. I realize the final decision may be a compromise, but it doesn't hurt to dream lol.

(1) prefer to live in a retirement community, so I can be involved in activities.
(2) I'd like to live where it's at least close enough to drive for a day at the beach, but I don't need to live on a beach or in a beach town
(3) an area less prone to hurricanes
(4) an area with culture: live music, academics, performances, lectures, etc. (I realize its different now in he pandemic)
(5) good quality of healthcare nearby
(6) an area that is at least somewhat progressive
(7) some diversity would be good - I have lived rural and urban, so I am flexible and open minded.

Appreciated!
Have you looked at the Villages? We have been snowbirding here since 2015. Bought our first home here in 2018 and our second, our "Pandemic Paradise," in October of 2020.

Here is how the Villages stacks up to your "Wants":
(1) Over 3000 clubs. If you don't see one you like, you are welcomed to start one. There is every sport/exercise program possible from A to Z...archery
to zumba. More golf holes than anywhere in the world.
(2) Located in the middle of the state, almost equal distance to beaches on either coast. We frequently go out for the day.
(3)Again, being in the middle of the state helps.
(4) Yes, yes to all. Our home up north is in a cultural mecca, one which is rivaled by what the Villages has to offer.
(5) University of Florida on property, we are told another hospital is forthcoming in the Southern part of the Villages. Every medical specialty one could possibly need is located either in the plentiful medical complexes on property or within close geographic proximity.
(6) That is probably a personal definition, though we are in our 60's and consider it to be so.
(7) Here is where it may fall short. We have seen increased diversity over the years, but would like to see much more to enhance our population. Our hope is that all feel welcome to Florida's Friendliest Hometown.

To see if the Villages might be in your retirement future, would encourage you to participate in a Lifestyle Preview visit. Go to their website to learn more. Come join us in "Living the Dream."
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Old 01-08-2021, 10:48 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by firemediceric View Post
Where I currently work in Florida this is what they tell us to expect. Ground has been broken and roads are going in.
https://www.emeraldlakesflorida.com/...lery-c9431b7-1
I have no knowledge of this community, but I've been living in FL for 7 years, and there have been plans to build this place in the open lot across the street from us since before we moved down there. I was thinking it might happen starting last year, but nothing yet. They've been asking for some pretty obnoxious variances that would affect us pretty significantly. But this past year the owner ran for Mayor and lost. I think the plan was to grease the variances on through, but now not only is he not the mayor, but the new mayor should be pretty pissed at him. I know this has nothing to do with anything, except this...only believe something will happen in FL after it has completed. There are still partially built condo buildings in the state from the 2009 crash. They are building new stuff, but you never know what will actually be done. I wouldn't count on it, and definitely wouldn't count on it looking anything like the artist's conception pictures.

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No golf that I saw. I'm out.
I've lived on a golf course for 13 years, and never played a hole. I would have sworn I'd pick the game up, but it's never happened. But it make for nice scenery, and I can sit on the deck and watch people and say "I could have made that one".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dtail View Post
I have lived in FLA for 3 years and never seen one cockroach or palmetto bug. I believe this mention is overstated.
We had one single palmetto bug in the house in 7 years. And it wasn't even that big. Now the fire ant infestation sucked, and DW wasn't too thrilled with the black racer that got in. But the gecko that made us think our smoke alarm battery had gone bad was pretty entertaining. There's definitely wildlife in FL, but nothing that came close to the racoon infestation in our attic in MD.
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Old 01-09-2021, 07:58 AM   #75
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I live in Pompano Beach and we like it. Plenty to do.
There’s an old joke here: there’s south Florida and there’s the Mouse (Orlando), and the rest is Georgia. Be sure the culture matches yours somewhat.
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Old 01-09-2021, 08:48 AM   #76
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Throughout the South, some of the best places to live are in the major college towns. The universities provide culture, athletics and they're lively enough to keep a retiree more active.

If you've decided that Florida is the place, you should be quick to hone in on a city and make your purchase. With so many people leaving expensive highly taxed cities in the North, the real estate market in Florida is going to just get more expensive.

I've always wondered where Floridians go on vacation. And about every third car in the NE GA, NW SC, Western NC and East TN mountains have a Florida license plate. They are inexpensive places to live with 4 distinct seasons. It's those mountains calling me instead of retirement communities with so many "old" people in Florida.
We've lived in NE FL for 14 years moving here after I retired from the military. Kids launched & out of state. Leaving my PT job this month. I'm feeling the call to leave FL (my wife - not so much). Wanderlust I guess. East TN checks a few blocks (taxes, not flat scenery, maybe on a lake). I think we need to spend some time up there to check it out before she retires (still TBD). No retirement communities for us.
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Old 01-09-2021, 09:18 AM   #77
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I have lived in FLA for 3 years and never seen one cockroach or palmetto bug. I believe this mention is overstated.
I cornered a giant one in the bathroom a few years ago. The darn thing faced me and stood up on it's back legs. Sort of like put up your dukes grandpa, let's see what you got.
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Old 01-09-2021, 09:24 AM   #78
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I cornered a giant one in the bathroom a few years ago. The darn thing faced me and stood up on it's back legs. Sort of like put up your dukes grandpa, let's see what you got.
Interesting. One of former work colleagues saw a huge rat on the subway platform in NY and the rat stood up on its legs.
P.S. The rat won that standoff.
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Old 01-09-2021, 09:26 AM   #79
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I live in Pompano Beach and we like it. Plenty to do.
There’s an old joke here: there’s south Florida and there’s the Mouse (Orlando), and the rest is Georgia. Be sure the culture matches yours somewhat.
lol
Many retirement communities lean heavily one way or the other including the largest one.
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Old 01-09-2021, 09:33 AM   #80
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We get the odd Roof Rat, small, really like a large mouse, they are almost cute. The only time we see Palmetto bugs is when they come into the house to "Shuffle off their mortal coil". They are usually legs up in a corner somewhere. Not many though.
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