Florida is among the fastest-growing states in the country. According to U. S. Census data, Florida is ranked number nine in terms of percentage growth (at 1.1% from July 1, 2018, to July 1, 2019) and number two in terms of numeric growth (at 233,420 people, second only to Texas, which saw growth of 367,215).
Drawn to the warm weather, reasonable cost-of-living, and laid-back vibes, people from all over the country are choosing to make Florida home. But which cities are people choosing to move to?
Here are the top five fastest-growing cities in Florida (according to the October 2020 analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data by WalletHub).
1. Fort Myers
Fort Myers is a perennial favorite on lists of the best places in the United States to retire. For 2020-2021, Fort Myers ranked number two on the U.S. News Best Places to Retire list. Located on the Caloosahatchee River in Southwest Florida, Fort Myers enjoys comfortable temperatures year-round and affordable real estate, with the median home price sitting at a reasonable $226,825.
Local real estate agents can help retirees from all over the country settle into a new home in Fort Myers in 2021.
2. Town ‘n’ Country
Town ‘n’ Country is a Tampa area suburb with a population of around 85,000. Niche.com ranked Town ‘n’ Country as one of the best suburbs in the state for young professionals, as well as giving Town ‘n’ Country accolades for being one of the most diverse suburbs in Florida.
With so many young professionals and young families in the area, real estate agents can help first-time buyers find their new homes in Town ‘n’ Country.
3. Cape Coral
Located just 10 miles from Fort Myers, Cape Coral has also experienced dramatic growth over the last decade. And unlike Fort Myers, Cape Coral has the advantage of being situated directly on the Gulf Coast with more than 400 miles of canal, perfect for buyers who want to be on the water.
Real estate agents have an opportunity to impress out-of-state buyers by giving them a boat tour of the area. Why pack buyers into your car to tour homes when you can invite them on your boat for a truly memorable buying experience?
4. Port Saint Lucie
Port Saint Lucie is the first eastern city on our list, being less than 10 miles from the Atlantic coast. In 2019, the population of Port Saint Lucie crossed the 200,000 mark, up 22.9% from the 2010 population. And the city is hustling to keep up with growth projections. As of mid-September 2020, with a full quarter left in the year, 36,360 building permits had already been issued in 2020.
Local real estate agents may want to consider working with developers to sell new construction property in Port Saint Lucie.
5. Lehigh Acres
Lehigh Acres topped WalletHub’s list of the fastest-growing cities in America for 2019, and in 2020, it’s still in the top twenty. Located in Lee County, along with Fort Myers and Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres has benefitted from a respectable 3% increase in the number of businesses and 4.6% growth specifically in tech companies.
While home values are modest, they are growing quickly, with Zillow projecting a 10.3% gain over the coming year. Lehigh Acres real estate agents have an opportunity to increase their incomes thanks to this increase in values.
What About the Large Metro Areas?
You may have noticed that all five of the fastest-growing cities in Florida are small to mid-sized. What about the large metros?
While Miami, Tampa, and Jacksonville are all enjoying impressive growth in 2020, Florida is experiencing the same shift as the rest of the country in terms of increased interest in the suburbs and smaller cities.
Because of COVID-19, buyers’ and renters’ preferences have changed. Today’s home searchers are looking for more living space (with enough rooms for home offices) as well as some outdoor space. They also want lower population-density than most cities can offer because of the importance of social distancing. And with so many people now able to work from home, affordability is now more important than proximity to the office.
There is still demand in Florida’s metro areas. It’s just being outpaced by the exceptionally high demand for Florida’s smaller cities.
Whether you live in a city, suburb, or small town, Florida is the place to be. And real estate is the career to be in! Get your Florida real estate license online and start your new career as a licensed real estate agent.