10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Florida For 2018


We used science and data to determine which cities in Florida have the best set up for children: a lot to do, good schools, and no crime.

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If you’re like the rest of us, you’re looking for the perfect place for your family. But you have a strict criteria; the city has to be safe, affordable, and stimulating. Basically, the place you move – or even visit – has to be outright perfect.

Is that attainable? Perhaps not, but we’ll get you as close as we can.

Promise.

According to the United States Census, the number of American families who move is trending downwards Why is that? Perhaps it has to do with the ‘safety net’ factor: We get comfortable where we live, and we’re afraid to try a new move. What if the schools are bad? What if it’s dangerous?

Well, we can pretty much guarantee that if you choose the cities we’re mentioning below, you won’t lose any sleep whatsoever.

So, where are the best cities for families in Florida? We’ve got the answers here.

These are the best cities to raise a family in the Sunshine State:

  1. Parkland (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. Maitland (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Winter Park (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Miami Lakes (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  5. Naples (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  6. Niceville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Weston (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  8. Eustis (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  9. Tampa (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Kissimmee (Photos | Homes For Sale)

If you’re thinking of making a move to Florida, and want a family-friendly place, we’ve got you covered. And if you already have kids, we’re surprised you made it this far into the article and hope your little ones give you a couple of more minutes of free time.

Keep on reading for a detailed methodology.

Or, check out some more reading about Florida and the best places for families in the country:

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How do you determine which place is best for families in Florida anyways?

To give you the places in Florida which are best for families, we have to look at a handful of metrics. Of course, we want to measure the type of people who live in each city, and make some assumptions about what’s family-friendly and what isn’t.

So we researched the internet for a database that contains all that information.

How we crunched the family friendly numbers for the Sunshine State

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using U.S. Census data produced for the state of Florida, we looked at every single city in the state. We paid particular attention to:

  • Crime (Both violent and property)
  • Quality of local schools
  • Distance to a major city without necessarily being in it
  • % of households with children
  • Family-friendly amenities nearby (museums, libraries and colleges)

We then gave each city a Family Score.

The higher the score, the better the city is for families. We also limited our results to cities with populations over 10,000 people. For Florida, that meant a total of 143 cities.

Read on to see why Parkland is where all the families are headed, while Cocoa Beach is probably a place made for singles.

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Parkland, FL

Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 28,354
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 40
Closest Major City: Hialeah
Households with kids: 51.0%
More on Parkland: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Parkland is a city in Broward County, Florida, United States.

Parkland is known for its zoning laws, which are designed to protect the “park-like” character of the city. Initially, there were no stores or traffic lights in Parkland, though this began to change in the mid 1990s and early 2000s with the additions of large neighborhood developments including Heron Bay and Parkland Isles.

Maitland, FL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 16,911
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 40
Closest Major City: Orlando
Households with kids: 23.0%
More on Maitland: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Maitland is a suburban city in Orange County, Florida, United States, part of the Greater Orlando area. The population was 15,751 at the 2010 census. The area’s history is exhibited at the Maitland Historical Museum. The city also hosts the Maitland Art Center, and examples of Mayan Revival architecture and Fantasy Architecture, the Maitland Telephone Museum and the William H. Waterhouse House Museum. A SunRail station is located in Maitland on Highway 17-92. The city is named for Fort Maitland.

Winter Park, FL

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 29,543
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 55
Closest Major City: Orlando
Households with kids: 23.0%
More on Winter Park: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Winter Park is a suburban city in Orange County, Florida, United States. The population was 27,852 at the 2010 United States Census. It is part of the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Miami Lakes, FL

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 30,833
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 52
Closest Major City: Hialeah
Households with kids: 40.8%
More on Miami Lakes: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Miami Lakes is a suburb of Miami, an incorporated town and former census-designated place in Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States. As of 2015 US Census, 30,791 people live in Miami Lakes.

Naples, FL

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 20,980
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 63
Closest Major City: Hialeah
Households with kids: 8.4%
More on Naples: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Naples is a city in Collier County, Florida, United States. As of 2015, the city’s population was about 20,600. Naples is a principal city of the Naples-Marco Island, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area, which had a population of about 322,000 as of 2015. Naples is one of the wealthiest cities in the United States, with the sixth highest per capita income in the country, and the second highest proportion of millionaires per capita in the US. Real estate is among the most expensive in the country, with houses for sale in excess of $40 million.

Niceville, FL

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 14,325
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 55
Closest Major City: Montgomery
Households with kids: 32.6%
More on Niceville: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Niceville is a city in Okaloosa County, Florida, United States, located near Eglin Air Force Base on Boggy Bayou that opens into Choctawhatchee Bay.

Weston, FL

Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 68,893
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 33
Closest Major City: Hialeah
Households with kids: 51.8%
More on Weston: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Weston is a master planned suburban community in Broward County, Florida, United States. Established as a city in 1996, much of the community was developed by Arvida/JMB Realty and is located near the western developmental boundary of Broward County. It is the most western city in Broward County, and its entire west side is next to the Everglades.

Eustis, FL

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 19,661
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 37
Closest Major City: Orlando
Households with kids: 29.0%
More on Eustis: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Eustis is a city in Lake County, Florida, United States. The population was 15,106 at the 2000 census. The Census Bureau estimated the population in 2008 to be 19,129. It is part of the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford Metropolitan Statistical Area. Eustis High School is the town’s local public high school.

Tampa, FL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 361,477
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 100
Households with kids: 27.6%
More on Tampa: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Tampa is a major city in, and the county seat of, Hillsborough County, Florida, United States. It is on the west coast of Florida on Tampa Bay, near the Gulf of Mexico, and is the largest city in the Tampa Bay Area. The city had a population of 335,709 at the 2010 census, and an estimated population of 377,165 in 2016.

Kissimmee, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 66,840
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 60
Closest Major City: Orlando
Households with kids: 36.4%
More on Kissimmee: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Kissimmee is a city in Osceola County, Florida, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the population was 59,682. It is the county seat of Osceola County. It is a Principal City of the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida, Metropolitan Statistical Area, which had a 2010 population of 2,134,411.

There You Have It – The Best Places To Grow Up In Florida

If you’re looking for a breakdown of cities in Florida ranked by criteria that most would agree make a place a great spot for families, this is an accurate list.

Here’s a look at the best cities for singles Florida according to the data:

  1. Cocoa Beach
  2. Holly Hill
  3. Ormond Beach

For more Florida reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Places For Families In Florida

Rank City Population Amenities Score
1 Parkland 28,354 56
2 Maitland 16,911 54
3 Winter Park 29,543 58
4 Miami Lakes 30,833 56
5 Naples 20,980 81
6 Niceville 14,325 57
7 Weston 68,893 58
8 Eustis 19,661 54
9 Tampa 361,477 100
10 Kissimmee 66,840 47
11 Key Biscayne 12,935 52
12 Pembroke Pines 164,753 52
13 Bradenton 52,985 52
14 Clearwater 111,747 88
15 Boca Raton 91,702 57
16 Davie 98,717 35
17 Oviedo 37,545 32
18 Fernandina Beach 12,156 52
19 Lake Mary 15,478 61
20 St. Cloud 44,198 39
21 North Miami 62,158 51
22 Doral 53,426 47
23 Miramar 133,741 49
24 Miami Shores 10,772 45
25 Hialeah Gardens 23,351 33
26 Coral Gables 50,533 61
27 North Palm Beach 12,581 42
28 Palmetto Bay 24,522 34
29 Hialeah 235,626 41
30 Coconut Creek 57,731 44
31 Altamonte Springs 42,557 36
32 Oldsmar 14,023 54
33 Coral Springs 127,673 38
34 Sarasota 54,425 72
35 Temple Terrace 25,654 47
36 Winter Springs 34,439 43
37 Jacksonville 856,616 100
38 Cocoa 17,558 80
39 Miami 432,622 100
40 Safety Harbor 17,268 59
41 Minneola 10,371 31
42 North Miami Beach 43,722 62
43 Winter Garden 39,219 58
44 Lighthouse Point 10,946 32
45 New Port Richey 15,503 60
46 Fort Myers 71,051 69
47 Tavares 14,965 55
48 Fort Pierce 43,883 72
49 Satellite Beach 10,495 54
50 Sweetwater 20,718 30
51 Sunny Isles Beach 21,937 42
52 Miami Gardens 112,514 44
53 Orlando 263,306 100
54 Wellington 61,371 38
55 Bartow 18,501 55
56 Cape Coral 170,063 51
57 Cutler Bay 44,002 46
58 Clermont 31,171 48
59 Hollywood 148,114 61
60 Lake Wales 15,206 59
61 Fort Lauderdale 175,153 100
62 Edgewater 21,306 31
63 Margate 56,245 43
64 North Lauderdale 43,087 46
65 Miami Springs 14,430 48
66 Lynn Haven 19,799 37
67 Ocoee 41,393 58
68 North Port 60,871 46
69 Port St. Lucie 175,652 50
70 Pensacola 53,250 69
71 Sunrise 91,177 36
72 West Park 14,884 37
73 Vero Beach 16,070 51
74 Dunedin 35,882 57
75 Ocala 57,873 48
76 Seminole 17,906 43
77 Stuart 16,204 48
78 Tamarac 63,747 56
79 West Melbourne 20,207 45
80 Lauderhill 70,452 55
81 Oakland Park 43,660 55
82 Royal Palm Beach 36,829 58
83 Lake Worth 36,838 48
84 Deerfield Beach 78,642 42
85 West Palm Beach 104,978 68
86 Atlantic Beach 13,089 34
87 Fort Walton Beach 21,238 48
88 Winter Haven 36,669 43
89 Auburndale 14,638 44
90 Rockledge 26,144 30
91 South Miami 12,207 34
92 Palm Springs 23,592 43
93 Palm Bay 106,573 53
94 Boynton Beach 72,748 40
95 Longwood 14,117 32
96 Lakeland 102,714 58
97 Sebring 10,423 59
98 Daytona Beach 64,105 63
99 Port Orange 58,780 42
100 Casselberry 26,649 46

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