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I see a LOT of luxury cars with "Maui Built" etc stickers and a local looking person inside. There's usually a custom license plate with the person's nickname too. My landlord's cousin's son has a massive S Class Benz!
I am just curious, why do you care what other people drive and how they choose to spend their money?
I'm a FL native, and lived in HI for 4 and a half years. After 6 months in San Diego, I'm considering moving back to HI. If I were to move back to FL, it would be to Sarasota. As far as differences go... I agree with most:
Cons: poorer education, isolated, confined, more expensive food, travel and real estate, some ignorant people, burn outs, humid (not as much as FL)
Pros: gorgeous beaches, perfect waves, clear water, consistent weather, friendly people, multicultural, diverse islands, amazing hiking, outer islands are virtually crime free, laid back, non materialistic, open minded interesting people, lots of free active outdoor activities
I'd recommend watching the news in both places. The news in FL is always about the latest murder, rape, death, poisonous food, etc... The news in Hawaii is much more positive with a focus on community, health and fun.
I visit both places on a regular basis after having lived in both, I can say I personally prefer Hawaii.
I completely agree! I want to live in Florida, maybe Miami, for a few years when I am done with college. How is Sarasota? Also, how did you like San Diego? Why were you only here for 6 months?
I was born and raised and currently live on Maui, and I am thinking about moving to the Tampa area of Florida. My husband is from Indiana and we lived there for about 5 years when we first got married, then we moved back to Maui about 3 years ago. We have 3 small kids and want (of course) to provide the best possible quality of life for them with the most opportunities for enrichment. I LOVE Maui, I always have and I always will, but everything is expensive and that really limits what you can do with your life here. My husband lived in the Tampa area for several years and had a lot of fun there, so we are considering it as an alternative.
Hawaii is less crowded than Florida, and has a much more more laid back lifestyle. Almost no traffic, unless you are dealing with Honolulu, and is even more temperate than Florida. The highest high in the summer is about 90 (and without the crazy humidity you have in Florida) and the lowest low in the winter is at or just below 60 in most places. During the day, winter or summer, the temperature is almost always 82-85. We don't get any thunderstorms (which I really miss) and hurricanes are very very rare. There are no predators and very few pests in Hawaii. We have mosquitoes, but not of biblical proportions like Florida. My husband had to explain why everyone had those metal cages attached to the backs of their houses in Florida. You can roll around in the grass outside here and you won't have any chigger bites or anything else. Hawaii seems to be a much more gentle place to me.
We have a decent 3 bedroom house here with no frills that we bought for about $430K last year. It was a great deal for Maui, but in Tampa, we could have a mansion with a pool for that price!! Groceries and gas here are much more expensive, but you do drive a lot less than on the mainland. We spend about $200 a month on gas for our cars and about $1000 a month on groceries and household items for 5 people. Shopping choices here are very limited, and if one store is out of something, chances are that everyone else is too. Our monthly budget leaves us with very little left over, so it's hard to be able to afford all the extras that create a good quality of life such as vacations, sports lessons, preschool, retirement and college savings, etc. Even if you were a multi-millionaire, your money would always go much farther for you in Florida. The temptation to leave will never go away for me. That being said, a lot of the best things about Maui are absolutely free. If you love to surf, snorkel, fish (and i mean fish- not catch), or hike you will find a lot to occupy your time here that won't impact your budget.
Florida offers a lot more opportunities for shopping, dining, museums, amusement parks, and just the ability to drive to wherever you want to go rather than flying being your only option. It is easier to find decent public schools in Florida, and no where else in the nation are they cutting so much funding from the schools that it is necessary to cut 17 days from the school year taking it from 180 down to 163. It is possible to get a good education in Hawaii if you apply yourself and you have parents who are supportive and involved- I'm proof of that, however, that's true almost anywhere, and wouldn't you rather have your children in a school with newer facilities, computers for everyone, happy well-paid teachers, and better test scores across the board?
Property taxes in Hawaii are very low, ours will be about $700 for the year. Florida's property taxes are significantly higher. Hawaii income tax is high at 10% vs. no income tax at all in Florida. Sales tax here is 4% (actually called a general excise tax) and in Florida it's 6%.
Another difference that my husband has noticed is the seafood. He loved the abundant and cheap seafood in Florida and was looking forward to having that again in Hawaii. He loves to fish and thought that would be his major past-time here. Hawaii's seafood is much more rare, and a lot harder to catch, therefore it is a lot more expensive. People here do not eat much seafood because of that. It is more for special occasions, unless it's cheap stuff that comes from somewhere else that you can get at Costco. He has become discouraged from fishing. He still goes, but in all the time we've lived here, I have only seen him bring home 1 fish. He has caught several others, but didn't keep them because of the risk of ciguatera poisoning. It's been kind of a bummer for him.
The job market is much healthier in Florida because there is just so much more available. It took my husband 3 years of searching to finally find the job he's got now so that we could move here. He has almost no other options if his current job were to go away. That all depends on what market you're in though. If you're in the tourist or restaurant industry, you'll do just fine here. The tech market, not so much.
There is a lot of give and take in both places, and I guess it depends on what stage of your life you're in and what your priorities are. I am still struggling with what would be best for our family.
Hawaii's lows are not even in the 60s that much. Maybe only sometimes, mostly in the mountains.
Coastal FL is completely different from the inner parts of FL. The coast is beautiful with white sandy beaches, palms, a more laid back atmosphere and at times, a breeze (it's still hot and humid most of the year though). The coastal areas of South FL are also much more expensive and generally have higher concentrations of people - there's great restaurants, shopping, and entertainment.
The inland is flat (swampy in places) hot and humid with strip malls, and generally has less educated and lower income people.
Not to mention how cold it gets in the winter. North Florida (panhandle down to Okeechobee) gets pretty chilly in wintertime, even more so inland. Even South Florida gets chilly sometimes. Just remember, guys, that central Florida (since you guys are mentioning Tampa and Orlando so much) is not even subtropical.
I don't think Hawaii, in general, is materialistic.
However, I do think the mainlanders who move to Hawaii, are often very materialistic. Living in Hawaii is just another thing 'to attain' for some of them.
I've always felt that Maui attracted the bulk of them. Being that you're in Maui, you're probably getting a stronger sense of that than anywhere else on the Islands.
Just my opinion though.
I agree. But Maui ca be a little because that is where all the golfers and country club people go for vacation or retirement. Since you are looking for a warm place to live, have you ever considered California or the rest of the desert southwest? Maybe even the south?
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