Living in Sarasota, FL Pros and Cons

Many consider Sarasota, Florida, to be a paradise. Located on the Gulf of Mexico, we’ve got sun over 300 days a year. Of course, every location has its good and bad sides. As with all of them, there are many living in Sarasota, FL pros and cons. If you’re thinking of making a move here, you should know them before making a final decision. Lucky for you, we’ve put together a list of them! (Now you won’t have to waste time searching online!) So if Sarasota is your destination, take a few minutes to get acquainted with this beautiful city. (And just FYI, there are more pros than cons.)

PRO: Living in Sarasota Means Awesome Weather

Some people may not like hot, sunny days, it’s true. But most of us love hot, sunny days! If that’s you, Sarasota is a fantastic location for your new home, job, or when going to college! The weather here is sub-tropical, which means it’s warm to hot all year. Yes, the summer get’s hot as blazes (see the following CON), but that’s why we have air conditioning. Here in Sarasota, you can go outside and enjoy yourself almost the entire year! (Just make sure to put on plenty of sunblock.)

CON: It Also Means Some HOT Summers

OK, we have to admit that Sarasota can get a little bit unbearable from time to time in summer. That’s because the sun never takes a break, shining down every day like a giant heat lamp. If you’re not a fan of sweating, sunburns, and relentless humidity, it can be problematic. Of course, everything is air-conditioned. Schools, churches, department stores, even the boat docks at the many marinas! So, while it may be hot as hades outside, at least you can keep cool as a cucumber inside.

PRO: Living in Sarasota Means Beaches Galore!

You’ve probably never seen beaches like the beaches here in Sarasota. The sand is beautiful, white, and sugary. The Gulf waters are sublime, and, to make things perfect, they’re all free. Unlike the beaches ‘up north’, Sarasota’s beaches don’t charge a single penny to use them. And get this, even parking is free! That’s incredible and one of the best perks of living here!

living in sarasota fl pros and cons

CON: Living in Sarasota Means the Occasional Hurricane

While the weather in Sarasota is usually excellent, they occasionally suffer hurricanes. That’s not good, but there is some good news. Since Sarasota is on the west coast of Florida, they get fewer storms than Miami or Jacksonville. But every few years, a hurricane storms through, causing damage that makes a mess of things for a few weeks.

PRO: Boating, Boating, and More Boating

Do you love boating more than life itself? If you do, you’re going to adore Sarasota! There’s so much to do out on the water here you won’t get bored. Boating, fishing, and swimming. Skiing, wakeboarding, and sailing. And, of course, there’s surfing, which is huge around these parts! If you’re a boat owner, the options to get out on the water are plentiful and plenty of fun! Most people here own their boats, but you can rent them also. (Plus all the gear you need.) 

Aerial view of boats

CON: Traffic In Winter is A Mess

No living in Sarasota, FL pros and cons list would be complete without the mention of the traffic problem. While northern states are freezing in the winter, Sarasota stays warm and comfortable. That’s why hundreds of thousands of “snowbirds” come down during that time. While we love seeing everyone come back every year, the traffic can be problematic. It starts right around Thanksgiving and doesn’t let up until Easter. While it may not be as bad as Atlanta or New York, it can be a bit frustrating. We suggest budgeting an extra 15 or 20 minutes to make it to your Sarasota destination on time.

PRO: High-Quality Healthcare

A lot of folks come to Sarasota to retire, it’s true. At that age, healthcare is essential and, in many cases, necessary. The good news is that Sarasota has four excellent hospitals. All four have won prestigious awards for the quality of care they give their patients. That includes Sarasota Memorial Hospital. It’s an acute care facility that’s one of the largest in Florida. It’s also received recognition on many occasions for being one of the best hospitals in the US. Of course, many young families live here in Sarasota even. The good news is that everyone benefits when you have excellent healthcare. 

PRO: No State Income Taxes

Whether you’re on a fixed income or not, nobody loves giving extra money to Uncle Sam. There’s no state income tax in Florida, though, making it a great place to settle down. Also, the rate of property tax is excellent and competitive with the rest of the country.

CON: Housing Costs Are Rising

Living on the water has its perks, but the cost is certainly not one of them. There are condos here that start at $600,000, which is on the high side. Yes, if you go further inland, the house prices drop. However, If living near the beach is your dream, you’ll need an income to match.

Aerial view of beach with an overlay of text

Living in Sarasota, FL Pros and Cons: Renting Storage

Whenever you move, there’s always the risk that the closing can fall through when you arrive at your new home. The same can happen here in Sarasota, and that’s why we recommend renting a storage unit before you arrive. That way, if your closing has any problems, you’ll have an affordable option to store everything. 

Are you already living in Sarasota? If yes, and you need extra storage space, a storage unit is your best bet. Not only can you store household goods but also RVs, boats, and jet skis! A storage unit is safe, secure, and guarded by 24/7 security cameras. Plus, they always have managers on-site during the day. If you need extra storage space, it’s the most affordable option.

In Closing: Living in Sarasota, FL Pros and Cons

As we said, there are more pros than cons to living in Sarasota. We hope you agree and welcome you to your new home! We know you’re going to love it here in Sarasota because we also do! Best of luck in your new home, and have fun enjoying everything that our lovely city has to offer!