Where to retire in SW florida....need your input

  1. My husband is planning to retire next year and we're thinking of moving to Florida. We love the gulf coast especially the Bonita Spring/Naples and Sarasota areas and we're having a hard time deciding where to settle down.Would like to know your opinions about these places. Thanks.
  2. I don't know where you live now--will you be living in FL year-round? If so, have you spent time there in the summer months? Here in NC, we have people called "half-backs"--they moved from the midwest or northeast to Florida, found it was too hot and humid, and moved half-way back to the Carolinas.

    I used to live in se FL many years ago--it's changed tremendously. All I know about the areas you mentioned is that Naples is very high cost-of-living. It's beautiful, tho.

    Good luck with your decision!
  3. Thanks boxermom. We live in Northern VA right now. We'll be moving permanently to Florida. We've been to FL panhandle during the summer months but not to the southern part. Where in NC are you from? We bought a property at St James plantation in Southport with the intention of retiring there.This month we went on a trip to Bonita Springs and just love the area. We're still actually trying to decide whether to move to FL or NC.
  4. Have been in South Florida since 1960 and love it.....A/C takes care of all the humidity and actually, many times have to wear a jacket..just got back from a vacation in the St. Pete area and loved it.......and in the N.E. Coast, love the ATlantic Beach, Neptune Beach area., if you want further info p.m. me and I will be glad to give you as much information as I have.
  5. Belen :amazed: !! We live in St. James! We are renting a house while we build. It should be done in early December. Where in SJP is your property? Our rental is on Medinah Ave. in Members Club, and our house under construction is on Beaver Creek Dr. near the turn where the main road goes out to the gate.

    My husband wanted to retire in FL, but I'm midwestern to the core and tho I lived in Pompano Beach FL, as a teenager, I knew it would be too humid for me. It's humid here, too, but we'll have some sort of seasons.

    Another coincidence with you: our younger son lives in Falls Church, VA! What a small, small world.

    Again, best of luck deciding what is best for you both. If you decide it's St. James, we'll have to get together.:yes:
  6. Habanerita---thanks for the reply.We drove through St Pete/Tampa on our way to Sarasota 3 weeks ago.

    Boxermom---What a small world! We live in Manassas, VA and our property at SJP is on the ICW ( Harborsideway) The lot is actually close to where Jay Atkinson lives. We went there last spring and played golf at the Members Club.We really like it at St James also. How do you like the area?
  7. I live in Northwest fl, Pensacola to be exact. Have you tried looking around this area? It is still affordable, we have beautiful beaches and the people here are so so nice. Destin is also a good choice, a little more upscale and more expensive but beautiful. take a look: visitpensacola.com

    good luck!
  8. My father lives in Naples and I must say it's beautiful there. I live in Miami and like Naples much, much better. The humidity is killer everywhere in FL though, even with AC :sad:
  9. I live in Miami. Don't care too much for Naples area. I do have friends that live in the Vero Beach/Sebastian area (central/east FL). They retired there about 6 years ago. I've visited them on several occasions. I was never bored. Nice restaurants. Good shopping. Yet very quiet in the residential neighborhoods.
    Their home is a 3bdr/2bth w/ garage, an enormous yard, and stream bubbling past their house. Very lovely and only $102,000 - a steal by FL real estate standards. I highly recommend it.
  10. Juliep --- My husband's family is from Pensacola. We used to come there when my husband's father was still alive. You're right, the beaches along the panhandle are beautiful! We still come down to Panama City Beach for vacations. We're not entirely ruling out the panhandle.We might end up moving there.
  11. We are building a home in the Sarasota area (currently live in Indiana) & will be relocating there permanantly next year. I LOVE Sarasota! I've been all up & down the gulf coast & knew immediately I wanted to live there when we visited the first time.

    For me the panhandle (esp. Panama City) is too touristy. My uncle lives in Pensacola. Yes, the beaches are beautiful though.
  12. Belen, I'm adjusting gradually to this area. It's small-town, as you know. We moved from an area that had all the shopping I needed within a 20-minute drive, and for culture, museums, etc. we could hop on the train to Chicago. The 45 min. drive to Wilmington for a book store or a "real" grocery store gets old. We keep hearing that better stores are coming, but how many years...? Everyone we've met in SJP has been friendly--no complaints there. My husband and I could not agree on a place that we both loved, so this is a compromise. I just didn't want to go thru another winter hearing him complain about cold and snow.

    BTW, we've visited Manassas--really liked it.

    I hope you and your husband find a spot that you both love!