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Old 12-11-2013, 12:00 AM
 
17 posts, read 24,821 times
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Hello everyone,
My wife and I are planning to move to the Tampa area (or surrounding) in late 2014 as I will be finished with my schooling and we will be financially ready for it. My question is this, as.. if possible, I'd like to hear of the best cities/areas to live in from all 3 locations listed in the title. The criteria I am looking for is as follows

Less ghetto the better. I think we can all relate to this desire.

Closer to the beach the better, or bay region for Tampa.

Cost of living not incredibly outrageous. Looking for either an apartment or house for rent ranging from 600/mo up to 1600/mo. We are avid ocean and beach lovers so the closer the better. But I also want to know that not only will she be safe, but also myself and our belongings.

Locations for st Pete, Clearwater and Tampa are welcome. And reasons for why are also welcome!

Thank you. And I am sorry for how this may turn out as I am writing from my phone.
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Old 12-11-2013, 05:48 AM
 
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Given your desire for close proximity to the beach I would eliminate Tampa and focus on the St Pete-Clearwater area as having long drives involving crossing bridges from Tampa will make frequent trips to the beach a major drag. There are a number of areas that fit your criteria for budget, safety and close to the beach. Check out the NE St Pete/Gateway area, Countryside in Clearwater, Safety Harbor, Dunedin (north of downtown, west of Keene) Belleair/Bellair Bluffs, the far west side of either Largo or Seminole (west of Walsingham Park/Reservoir) and St Pete Beach.
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Old 12-11-2013, 06:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyle19125 View Post
Given your desire for close proximity to the beach I would eliminate Tampa and focus on the St Pete-Clearwater area as having long drives involving crossing bridges from Tampa will make frequent trips to the beach a major drag. There are a number of areas that fit your criteria for budget, safety and close to the beach. Check out the NE St Pete/Gateway area, Countryside in Clearwater, Safety Harbor, Dunedin (north of downtown, west of Keene) Belleair/Bellair Bluffs, the far west side of either Largo or Seminole (west of Walsingham Park/Reservoir) and St Pete Beach.
I think the important thing to consider before making a decision is what does your lifestyle consist of?? Is it all about the beach, maybe the nightlife, what about sports. More importantly where do you think you will be working??? Surrounding yourself with a good mix of the above with a close commute to work will make a huge difference.
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Old 12-11-2013, 10:20 AM
 
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First off thank you for the suggestions. Very helpful and good information! We are not really into parties, clubs or hard events. As well we really couldn't care less for sports. We live very relaxed lifestyles. What I will say though is we don't mind going to a bar on occasion for some drinks, though not a crazy bar like some college campus ones.
As far as employment, IT security industry is my field of study, though I also have experience in corrections law enforcement so I could land a job in either area. With the IT aspect I'd say closer to Tampa the better. But even if I'm 30 minutes away from work I could live with it. I do that already for work as the town I live in offers very little without travelling outside of it for work.
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Old 12-11-2013, 10:31 AM
 
21,186 posts, read 30,343,833 times
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Originally Posted by lrs184 View Post
First off thank you for the suggestions. Very helpful and good information! We are not really into parties, clubs or hard events. As well we really couldn't care less for sports. We live very relaxed lifestyles. What I will say though is we don't mind going to a bar on occasion for some drinks, though not a crazy bar like some college campus ones.
As far as employment, IT security industry is my field of study, though I also have experience in corrections law enforcement so I could land a job in either area. With the IT aspect I'd say closer to Tampa the better. But even if I'm 30 minutes away from work I could live with it. I do that already for work as the town I live in offers very little without travelling outside of it for work.
Do Tampa firms pay more for some reason than firms in St Pete or Clearwater???
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Old 12-11-2013, 10:35 AM
 
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No not at all, nor have I researched that. I'm making an assumption based on how it is here in Indiana. If you want more than just a few job opportunities, you go to larger areas. Perhaps it's not the same in that region, but I'd be hard pressed to find many IT security opportunities here without being in Indy or the outskirts.
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Old 12-11-2013, 10:44 AM
 
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But these are also the reasons for why I am here. To find out as much as possible. So any information is welcome. Including job market and so on.
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Old 12-11-2013, 02:00 PM
 
21,186 posts, read 30,343,833 times
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Originally Posted by lrs184 View Post
No not at all, nor have I researched that. I'm making an assumption based on how it is here in Indiana. If you want more than just a few job opportunities, you go to larger areas. Perhaps it's not the same in that region, but I'd be hard pressed to find many IT security opportunities here without being in Indy or the outskirts.
Pinellas County (St Pete-Clearwater) isn't the "outskirts" as it comprises roughly 50% of the Tampa Bay metro area and was largely built out by the 1980s, save for the far northern tip. The population density is such that there are nearly as many people living in Pinellas County as Hillsborough County (Tampa), yet with half the landmass. St Petersburg, Pinellas County's largest city (245K) is the fourth largest city in the state. The county ranks as Florida's sixth largest and coupled with Tampa/HillsboroughCounty ranks as the 18th largest metro area in the US...the 2nd largest in Florida after Miami/Ft Lauderdale/West Palm Beach.
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Old 12-11-2013, 02:57 PM
BBI
 
490 posts, read 810,610 times
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A few thoughts:
  • If you want laid-back, beach-vacation feel, Pinellas is better than Hillsborough.
  • Biggest job centers are in Tampa (downtown, Westshore) and north end of St. Pete (Carillon, Gateway). There are some other companies scattered around the bay area, but those are the most likely spots.
  • Peak rush hour, if you're living in Pinellas, double google maps drive times if you're (1) crossing a bridge or (2) driving on a big road north of St. Pete proper (Bay/Roosevelt, Ulmerton, US 19, etc.). If your commute isn't at rush hour or isn't on one of those roads, you can trust google maps times. FYI, rush hour is roughly 730-9am and 5-630pm.
  • Not sure how old you are. We're early 30s, which makes us too young to live in the beach communities or in Dunedin.
  • Not sure if you have kids. A lot of north Pinellas is suburbs. Safety Harbor, for instance, has a great little kid-oriented downtown.
  • For chill bars, mixed ages, check out downtown St. Pete. Very effective use of the bay in town and just north of it. 15 min drive to gulf beaches. Full disclosure: we live just north of downtown in the Old NE neighborhood.
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Old 12-11-2013, 04:40 PM
 
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We are in our early 20's (24 myself). We also do not have kids, so where we can move to is pretty open. Why do you say too young to live in beach communities?

Really though we are just very relaxed and don't really have high demands for living requirements. Just a safe area for the most part. It is sounding like St. Pete will definitely be the place to check out based on what you both are saying.
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